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Cannabis users too dangerous to have guns, DOJ says (Newsletter: November 17, 2023)



Marijuana amendments blocked; Most Americans in legal jurisdictions; OH legalization changes; MD cannabis protections targeted; CBD & dental pain

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The Department of Justice filed a federal court brief arguing that cannabis consumers with guns pose a unique danger to society, in part because they’re “unlikely” to store their weapon properly before using marijuana.

The House Rules Committee blocked floor votes on amendments to protect state marijuana legalization and medical psilocybin laws from federal interference. It also blocked a proposal that would prevent the Biden administration from rescheduling cannabis.

Former federal drug officials published a report showing that 53 percent of Americans now live in a state where recreational marijuana is legal, despite ongoing federal prohibition, and that three-fourths reside in jurisdictions that allow medical cannabis.

Ohio Senate President Matt Huffman (R) said it’s “all hands on deck” to make changes to the voter-approved marijuana legalization law before key provisions take effect next month, though the House speaker seems to want to move more slowly and consider options.

Maryland House and Senate Republican lawmakers are pushing a new bill to let police search people and cars based on the smell of marijuana, which is a legal product. The “Drug Free Roadways Act” would remove a protection enacted by the Democratic-controlled legislature this year.

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a bill to allow medical marijuana grower-processors to sell cannabis products directly to patients and to grant grower permits to independent dispensaries.

During a White House meeting, Indonesian President Joko Widodo pressed President Joe Biden to lift a Food and Drug Administration alert that broadly restricts imports of kratom to the U.S., according to advocacy groups.

A new study found that cannabidiol “can manage emergency dental pain effectively,” with researchers saying the results can “catalyze the use of CBD as an alternative analgesic to opioids for acute inflammatory pain conditions.”

The Missouri legislature’s Joint Committee on Administrative Rules issued a report criticizing the Division of Cannabis Regulation for overstepping its authority by requiring plain packaging for marijuana products.

Newly obtained documents show that loans offered by the New York Social Equity Cannabis Investment Fund to dispensaries owned by justice-impacted individuals are highly restrictive and come with steep interest rates.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, along with the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, published reports about the death of a Trulieve worker.

The House Veterans’ Affairs Committee tweeted, “Psychedelic-assisted therapy is a groundbreaking clinical procedure that has the potential to transform the way we look at mental health care — and fight back against veteran suicide.”

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) authored an op-ed about legislation he is cosponsoring to let states set their own marijuana laws without federal interference.

The House bill to remove the bar on people with felony drug convictions from working in the hemp industry got one new cosponsor for a total of 10.

The house bill to loosen requirements for hemp growers got one new cosponsor for a total of 10.


A spokesperson for Pennsylvania’s Senate president pro tempore said she won’t support legalizing marijuana until federal law changes.

A former Michigan House speaker convicted in a corruption scandal related to marijuana licensing is seeking to delay his date to report to prison. Separately, regulators suspended the licenses of a cannabis business.

Oregon House Republicans are pushing to repeal provisions of the state’s voter-approved drug decriminalization law.

Colorado regulators issued health and safety advisories about marijuana products with potentially unsafe levels of yeast, mold and aspergillus.

New York regulators will consider a settlement in a lawsuit that has prevented additional marijuana dispensaries from opening on Friday.

A top Massachusetts marijuana regulator is stepping down.

Missouri regulators revoked a marijuana manufacturing company’s license.

The Iowa Board of Pharmacy denied a petition to adopt rules providing religious exemptions to drug criminalization laws.

Minnesota officials hosted a webinar on how marijuana plays into child maltreatment cases in light of the state’s new legalization law.

Virginia regulators launched a public education campaign to deter marijuana-impaired driving.

Arkansas regulators fined a medical cannabis cultivation facility for multiple alleged violations.

Washington State regulators will host stakeholder workshops about rules for cannabis laboratory accreditation this month and next month.

Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,000 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.


The UK government issued a response to a House of Commons Home Affairs Committee report on drug policy.

The former head of the Australian Federal Police said he wants governments to implement marijuana decriminalization trials.

Ireland’s first medical cannabis clinic opened.

A former Philippine senator is calling on the government to cooperate with an International Criminal Court investigation into the nation’s bloody “war on drugs.”


A study highlighted the potential of medical cannabis “in improving patient outcomes for those with PTSD, particularly concerning sleep disturbances, which often do not respond to currently available treatments.”

A study suggested that “lifetime cannabis use may reduce breast cancer risk, but cannabis use disorder exacerbates the risk of breast and lung cancer.”


The University of Minnesota School of Public Health is launching a Cannabis Research Center.

Prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana launched a new drug news aggregation website.


AYR Wellness Inc. reported quarterly net revenue of $114.4 million and a net loss of $20.3 million.

Part of Canopy Growth Corporation’s plan to enter the U.S. market is being opposed by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A Benzinga editor explained that the outlet retracted a story billed as a cannabis interview with Berner because it “could not be verified & does not meet Benzinga’s editorial standards.”


Snoop Dogg tweeted that he is “giving up smoke.”

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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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