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Booker says “good shot” for cannabis in lame duck (Newsletter: October 18, 2022)



CO gov wavers on psychedelics endorsement; Sanders “worries” about youth marijuana Qs; KS medical cannabis “not a priority”; Gun lawsuit hearing

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Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) said he hasn’t made up his mind about the psychedelics legalization initiative on the state’s November ballot—despite previously voicing support for decriminalization and noting the therapeutic benefits of substances like psilocybin. 

  • Polis’s noncommittal stance on the psychedelics measure echoes how he declined to endorse the 2012 marijuana legalization initiative voters ended up approving at the ballot even though he was already a vocal cannabis reform supporter at the time.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) said “we’ve got a good shot” of passing marijuana reform legislation—including banking and restorative justice provisions—in the lame duck session after the midterm elections.

  • “I wouldn’t say it’s a great shot, but it’s on a good path.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) said the fact that he gets asked about marijuana so often at high school events “worries me, to tell you the truth” and that he’s “not a great fan of drugs and alcohol”—but he nonetheless continues to support legalization.

Kansas House Democrats are pushing back on the Republican Senate president’s view that medical cannabis is “not a priority” as a special committee of the legislature holds its second of three meetings this week to prepare a bill that could pass in 2023.

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) is cheering the “compelling” arguments her legal team made in a hearing on the federal government’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit she filed on medical marijuana patients’ gun rights.


The Congressional Progressive Caucus tweeted, “@POTUS  is pardoning thousands of people convicted of simple marijuana possession. When a Black person is 3.64x more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than a white person, this is an essential step forward for racial justice.”

Sen. Todd Young (R-IN) said during a debate that he will consider working to remove federal barriers to state marijuana laws, including on banking, but that it’s a “third-tier priority.” Democratic opponent Thomas McDermott, currently the mayor of Hammond, said he supports legalization.

Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR) said during a debate that President Joe Biden’s cannabis clemency move is “another example of weakness on crime.”

Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) tweeted, “Biden’s pardon is a huge step in the right direction that will positively affect thousands of Americans, particularly Black and brown people that have disproportionately been convicted of marijuana possessions.”

Rep. Troy Carter (D-LA) tweeted, “We must continue to push forward to expunge federal marijuana misdemeanors by passing my bill H.R. 8557.”


Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) said he “can’t in good conscience consider issuing blanket pardons” to people for marijuana until federal law changes.

South Dakota Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jamie Smith, currently the House minority leader, accused Gov. Kristi Noem (R) of “twisting my words on a point I was making on marijuana legalization” by selectively editing a video of him talking about having “more things to tax.”

Arkansas attorney general candidates shared their views on marijuana legalization.

Texas Democratic attorney general candidate Rochelle Garza discussed her support for legalizing marijuana.

A former California Department of Finance director and others wrote in voter guide arguments against a measure on the November ballot to ban certain flavored tobacco products that “prohibition has never worked—it didn’t work with alcohol or marijuana, and it won’t work now.”

A Kentucky representative discussed support for cannabis decriminalization and clemency.

A North Carolina representative tweeted, “I was proud to sponsor a bill to legalize & regulate cannabis in NC just this past session. I’ll be proud to do it again the next session, too. Like @POTUS once said, ‘It’s good for the economy. Helps everybody. Hurts nobody.’ Let’s blaze a trail forward.”

Colorado regulators issued a bulletin about reports of increased burglaries targeting marijuana businesses.

Rhode Island regulators issued guidance about marijuana product testing.

Utah regulators posted an update about the medical cannabis program.

Oregon regulators will consider changes to rules on the marijuana license moratorium and on sex and human trafficking at cannabis businesses on Wednesday.

Vermont regulators will review recommendations for marijuana social equity status and licensure on Wednesday.

Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,500 cannabis, psychedelics and drug policy bills in state legislatures and Congress this year. Patreon supporters pledging at least $25/month get access to our interactive maps, charts and hearing calendar so they don’t miss any developments.

Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.


Boston, Massachusetts’s Cannabis Board will meet on Wednesday.


The Czech Republic’s national anti-drug coordinator is proposing a plan to legalize marijuana.

Thailand’s opposition parties are asking the Election Commission to dissolve the ruling Bhumjaithai Party for alleged violations related to its marijuana reform policies.

Brazil’s Federal Council of Medicine adopted a resolution that restricts doctors to prescribing CBD only for  two types of epilepsy.

Canadian government ministers issued a statement marking the fourth anniversary of cannabis legalization.


A study suggested that “cannabinoids could potentially have a beneficial effect on oral cancer therapy.”

A study found that “combinations of the cannabinoids CBDV, THCV, CBDVA, CBCA, and CBGA exhibited a synergistic inhibitory effect on the viability of cells derived from colon polyps of patients.”


The Indiana Democratic Party tweeted, “@GovHolcomb in 2021: Legalization should be left up to the feds. This week: Marijuana is a state’s rights issue. The @indgop has failed Hoosiers. Enough of the partisan games and moving the goalposts. A vote for @INDems is a vote to legalize cannabis.”

The Maryland Association of Counties said it will push lawmakers in 2023 to frame marijuana legalization implementation legislation “with local discretion for facilities and a reasonable local revenue structure to offset local service demands.”

The Council for Federal Cannabis Regulation has a new executive director.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette editorial board is urging voters to reject the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial board is urging voters to defeat the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot.

Texas NORML published a voter guide.

The Michigan Initiative for Community Healing and Decriminalize Nature Michigan will hold a rally at the state Capitol on Tuesday to pressure lawmakers to support psychedelics reform.


Three former CannTrust Holdings Inc. officials pleaded not guilty to charges related to marijuana cultivation that took place in unlicensed rooms.

GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons spoke about how psychedelic therapy helped him treat PTSD.

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Tom Angell is the editor of Marijuana Moment. A 20-year veteran in the cannabis law reform movement, he covers the policy and politics of marijuana. Separately, he founded the nonprofit Marijuana Majority. Previously he reported for and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.


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