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Kennedy acknowledges cannabis opposition is an outlier (Newsletter: Feb. 8, 2018)

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State lawmakers consider marijuana referendums; New Fox News poll; Did Trump pressure Israel on cannabis exports?

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Congressman Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) acknowledged in an interview that his anti-marijuana votes put him at odds with his party.

Lawmakers in at least six states are considering bills that would place marijuana legalization referendums on November ballots this year, while another two are weighing medical cannabis referendums.

The former president of the National Rifle Association is calling for an end to federal restrictions on the purchasing firearms by medical cannabis patients.

/ FEDERAL

Rumors are circulating that President Trump pressured Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to suspend medical cannabis imports.

Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said he thinks the Obama administration “got it right” on marijuana.

Congressman Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) published an op-ed slamming U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s position on marijuana.

Congressman Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) and Congressman Denny Heck (D-WA) co-authored an op-ed pushing for marijuana businesses’ access to banks.

Congresswoman Dina Titus (D-NV) tweeted, “It is time we puff, puff, pass bills to protect marijuana businesses and consumers.”

Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN) tweeted that “prosecution of #marijuana has an opportunity cost: it wastes resources that could be used to prosecute opioid sellers, &crack, meth &heroin dealers.”

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration released information it claims “underscore[s] the serious and sometimes deadly risks” of kratom.

The U.S. House bill to increase marijuana businesses’ access to banks got one new cosponsor, for a total of 79.

The U.S. House bill to remove the 280E tax penalty on marijuana businesses got one new cosponsor, for a total of 43.

The U.S. House bill to prevent federal authorities for punishing people following state marijuana laws got one new cosponsor, for a total of seven.

The U.S. House bill to remove marijuana research roadblocks got three new cosponsors, for a total of 10.

FiveThirtyEight takes a lengthy look at U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s regressive criminal justice views.

/ STATES

Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell (R), a gubernatorial candidate, supports medical cannabis legislation.

Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood (D) said he has some concerns about marijuana legalization but views it as inevitable.

Leaders of the group Legalize Maine are financially backing the gubernatorial campaign of legalization opponent Ken Fredette (R), currently the House minority leader.

Connecticut Republican gubernatorial candidate Erin Stewart, currently the New Britain mayor, said she’s “fine with” marijuana legalization.

The Oregon secretary of state’s office slammed regulators for not having “robust” systems to track and secure marijuana.

The Illinois Senate Executive Committee voted 16-1 to approve a bill allowing people who have been prescribed opioids to apply for temporary medical cannabis cards.

The Nebraska Legislature’s Judiciary Committee will hear a medical cannabis bill on Thursday.

A member of Ohio’s medical cannabis advisory committee resigned in protest of what he sees as a process “debilitated by bureaucracy” that will likely fail “to provide adequate patient access and physician participation.”

The chair of Florida’s Senate Appropriations Committee is considering withholding funding from the Department of Health over its delays in implementing medical cannabis.

Georgia representatives filed a resolution urging Congress to “deschedule marijuana or otherwise allow the states and territories of the United States of America to determine for themselves the best means of regulating marijuana.”

Puerto Rico’s Senate is investigating promotional practices in the medical cannabis industry.

Hawaii lawmakers are considering legislation to allow reciprocity for out-of-state medical cannabis patients.

California regulators released marijuana tax guidance. And education officials launched resources aimed at preventing teen cannabis use under legalization.

Washington State regulators released guidance on marijuana tracking, and separately canceled the license of a cannabis retail outlet with a $1.4 million delinquent tax bill.

Michigan regulators sent an update to medical cannabis business license applicants.

/ LOCAL

Fulton County, Georgia commissioners are considering a marijuana decriminalization proposal.

The Louisville, Kentucky Metro Council is hosting a series of town hall meetings about legalizing medical cannabis.

A new report shows continued racial disparities in New York City marijuana and other drug arrests.

/ INTERNATIONAL

The Antigua and Barbuda Parliament approved a marijuana decriminalization bill.

The International Criminal Court is launching a “preliminary examination” of the Philippine government’s bloody “war on drugs.”

The Canadian government may need to rely on controversial procedural moves to accelerate the Senate’s consideration of a pending marijuana legalization bill.

Malta Prime Minister Joseph Muscat is pushing legislation to allow medical cannabis production.

Greece is fast-tracking medical cannabis legislation as a move to generate revenue.

A South Korea lawmaker introduced a medical cannabis bill.

/ ADVOCACY

The Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund slammed U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner’s (R-CO) efforts to block Justice Department nominees over federal marijuana policy.

Maryland activists held a lobby day in support of a new marijuana legalization referendum bill.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study of police actions in Nigeria concluded that “crackdowns constitute a form of structural violence in the everyday life of cannabis users, and have negative effects on their health and social and economic well-being.”

/ OPINION & ANALYSIS

A Fox News poll found that U.S. voters support legalizing marijuana, 59% – 32%.

A poll found that 76% of Virginia voters support decriminalizing marijuana.

/ BUSINESS

The founder of Lagunitas Brewing Co. says that legal marijuana is going to be “way, way, way, way bigger” than craft beer.

Leafly announced it will stop listing unlicensed marijuana businesses in California.

Tilray raised C$60 million in Series A financing.

USA Today looks at how airports in legalization states are handling marijuana issues.

Legal marijuana production in the small African nation of Lesotho is controlled by a U.S.-based company.

Keystone ReLeaf LLC, which failed to get a Pennsylvania medical cannabis business license, is suing regulators to overturn their selection process.

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.

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 Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy. (Organization citations are for identification only and do not constitute an endorsement or partnership.)

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Cannabis banking would make IRS’s job easier, official says (Newsletter: October 25, 2021)

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Senate panel demands drug war accounting; Luxembourg moves to legalize marijuana; Bipartisan cannabis research bill; TX delta-8 ban causes scramble

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The Senate Appropriations Committee issued a draft report demanding that the State Department explain why tens of billions of dollars spent on the international war on drugs has done virtually nothing to stop drugs and why the U.S. strategy remains “largely unchanged.”

An Internal Revenue Service official said giving marijuana businesses access to banks “would make the IRS’s job to collect [taxes] a lot easier.” She also discussed the 280E provision and how the agency takes steps to help cannabis firms comply with tax law.

Luxembourg’s ministers of justice and homeland security announced that the government plans to legalize possession and cultivation of marijuana for personal use early in 2022. A broader system to legalize and regulate cannabis sales would follow later.

A bipartisan group of members of Congress led by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Andy Harris (R-MD)  filed a new bill to remove barriers to marijuana research—including by letting scientists study dispensary cannabis. A prior version passed the House last year.

Hemp retailers are scrambling in the wake of a Texas Department of State Health Services notice clarifying that the state classifies delta-8 THC as an illegal drug.

/ FEDERAL

A onetime associate of former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani (R) was found guilty on federal charges of making illegal campaign contributions as part of a scheme to win marijuana business licenses.

The Department of Veterans Affairs published a contract solicitation to produce 1,000,000 capsules to be used in a proof of concept trial of cannabis derivatives in treating neuropathic pain.

Former Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-RI) participated in a summit hosted by prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana.

The House bill to deschedule marijuana and fund programs to repair drug war harms got five new cosponsors for a total of 92.

/ STATES

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) touted marijuana legalization as a key accomplishment at a pre-election rally for state Democrats.

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) tweeted, “We’re creating opportunities for generations of New Mexicans by building jobs and a whole new economic revenue stream through recreational cannabis.”

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried, currently the agriculture commissioner, tweeted, “Ron DeSantis *now* says his special session is to protect workers ignoring their employers’ vaccine policies. Why don’t we start by protecting patients who lose their jobs when they exercise their right to use medical cannabis?”

Connecticut’s attorney general said billboards advertising Massachusetts marijuana dispensaries are illegal.

Arkansas’s attorney general issued a warning about marijuana edibles in packaging that resembles well-known snack foods and candy.

Washington, D.C.’s attorney general tweeted about Senate legislation to let the city legalize cannabis sales, saying, “For 6 years, Congress refused to allow the District to regulate marijuana, trapping residents in legal limbo, threatening public safety by allowing the underground market to operate without oversight, and depriving us of tax revenue. This is welcome news.”

Massachusetts’s treasurer made new appointments to the Cannabis Advisory Board. Separately, a former regulator authored an op-ed highlighting new research that indicates the ban on cannabis vapes that the state instituted during an outbreak of lung injuries made the problem worse by preventing access to regulated products.

Colorado’s House speaker received an award from prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana.

A Mississippi senator is circulating a revised version of draft medical cannabis legislation.

Oklahoma senators will host an interim study on process validation and medical cannabis testing requirements on Monday.

The Montana Supreme Court overturned a man’s conviction for transporting marijuana after determining that police violated his constitutional right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.

Vermont regulators voted to ban marijuana stores within 500 feet walking distance from a school.

Michigan regulators published a bulletin about visiting medical cannabis patients from out of state.

Rhode Island regulators will hold a long-delayed lottery for medical cannabis dispensary licenses this week.

Oregon regulators fined a marijuana processor for violating packaging and labeling rules.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Community & Economic Development tweeted, “Move over corn, PA is moving to hemp.🌿 A first-of-its-kind 4-acre hemp maze is growing in Lancaster, offering a twist on this traditional fall attraction.”


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.

/ LOCAL

The Douglas County, Oregon Board of Commissioners voted to declare a state of emergency over illegal marijuana cultivation.

Kalamazoo, Michigan officials are considering approving a marijuana social use lounge.

/ INTERNATIONAL

The UK government ignored a confidential recommendation from its Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs to decriminalize drugs.

Argentina’s Supreme Court of Justice ordered officials to provide medical cannabis oil to a person suffering from refractory epilepsy.

Ireland’s Department of Education issued a warning about cannabis-infused candies in advance of Halloween.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “most pediatric oncologists and palliative care physicians recognize a potential role for cannabis in symptom control in children with cancer.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that 86 percent of Moroccans believe legalizing marijuana would contribute to economic development.

The Attorney General Alliance published a deskbook on cannabis law.

The Drug Policy Alliance, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Human Rights Watch and other organizations sent a letter urging congressional leaders to oppose the Biden administration’s plan to permanently classify fentanyl-related substances as Schedule I drugs.

/ BUSINESS

Jushi Holdings Inc. opened its 25th marijuana dispensary in the U.S.

Workers at a Curaleaf in Worth, Illinois voted to join Local 881 of the United Food and Commercial Workers.

MedMen’s former CFO testified that he resigned after discovering potential illegal transportation of marijuana and stock market manipulation.

Cybin Inc. announced the completion of its 74th pre-clinical study.

Canadian retailers sold C$356.9 million worth of legal marijuana products in August.

/ CULTURE

Mike Tyson is calling on the UK to legalize marijuana.

Joshua D. Angrist, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor who won a Nobel prize this month, once wrote in a published paper that he “smoked marijuana repeatedly throughout the day in high school.”

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.
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NY moves to allow cannabis homegrow for patients (Newsletter: October 22, 2021)

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RI marijuana legalization deal nears; DC drug decriminalization campaign launches; Another local psychedelics resolution approved

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Rhode Island lawmakers are nearing a deal on a marijuana legalization bill that could pass in a special session this fall. Negotiators from the Senate, House and governor’s office are approaching agreement on key issues like expungements, licensing and regulatory bodies.

New York regulators took action to allow medical cannabis patients to grow their own medicine after they previously missed the deadline to do so. The proposed rules will now undergo a public comment period before taking effect. Officials also gave an update on efforts to expunge previous marijuana conviction records.

A coalition of Washington, D.C. activists launched a campaign to pass a local measure to decriminalize drugs and expand access to treatment and harm reduction services.

The Easthampton, Massachusetts City Council approved a resolution supporting decriminalization of psychedelics and other drugs. It’s now the fourth city in the state to adopt such a measure.

/ FEDERAL

Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) wrote about his support for marijuana reform in a constituent letter.

Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) voiced concerns about marijuana and other drugs at a roundtable meeting about border issues.

The House bill to allow CBD as a dietary supplement got one new cosponsor for a total of 33.

/ STATES

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist, currently a congressman, tweeted, “When I’m governor, I will push for the full legalization of marijuana and the expungement of all related misdemeanors and third-degree felonies.”

The chairman of the New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee said he is working on a bill to legalize marijuana.

A Michigan senator delivered a floor speech about the failure of the war on drugs.

Pennsylvania regulators are accepting applications for permits to grow or process hemp in 2022. Meanwhile, the state Department of Agriculture is encouraging people to participate in a federal hemp survey.

The California Department of Cannabis Control sent a press release marking its first 100 days of existence.

Ohio regulators published an updated list of compliant medical cannabis devices.

Oregon regulators are considering changes to cannabis testing requirements.

New Mexico’s Cannabis Regulatory Advisory Committee is accepting applications for open positions.

Nevada regulators will consider marijuana business issues on Tuesday.

West Virginia regulators will host a medical cannabis patient signup event on Wednesday.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.


/ INTERNATIONAL


Mexico’s Senate majority leader published a blog post about the benefits of legalizing marijuana.

Italian activists have collected more than 620,000 signatures on a proposed marijuana legalization referendum and will deliver the measure to the Court of Cassation on October 28.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “medical cannabis was associated with reduced pain intensity/inference, lower anxiety/depression, and improved sleep and quality of life.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll of U.S. adults found that 83 percent think states should require licensed cannabis producers to use secure labels that can’t be counterfeited.

The Reason Foundation published a white paper on Second Amendment rights for marijuana consumers.

Law Enforcement Action Partnership led a letter asking the Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking to oppose permanently classifying fentanyl-related analogues in Schedule I.

/ BUSINESS

Amazon lobbied on federal cannabis policy last quarter, a disclosure report shows.

Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. is expanding its co-branded line of products with Rolling Stone to additional U.S. markets.

Jushi Holdings Inc. secured a $100 million Senior Secured Credit Facility from a portfolio company of SunStream Bancorp Inc.

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.
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USPS says hemp and CBD vapes are banned from the mail (Newsletter: October 21, 2021)

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FDA will use Reddit to learn about CBD & delta-8; Top Mexican senator: marijuana vote soon; Activist apes erect monolith at DEA headquarters

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Free to read (but not free to produce)! We’re proud of our newsletter and the reporting we publish at Marijuana Moment, and we’re happy to provide it for free. But it takes a lot of work and resources to make this happen.

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The U.S. Postal Service released its final rule to implement a ban on shipping vaping devices, and it clarified that hemp, CBD and marijuana vapes are generally not mailable—even if the products are federally legal.

The Food and Drug Administration announced a plan to search Reddit and additional “novel” data sources to better understand the health effects of CBD and other marijuana-derived compounds like delta-8 THC “in real-time.”

Mexico’s Senate president said lawmakers will finally pass a marijuana legalization bill “in the coming weeks or months” because there’s “no longer room for the prohibitionist policy.”

  • “We are the Mexico of freedoms, and the people are aware of it.”

Activists dressed as apes erected a 2,001-pound monolith in front of Drug Enforcement Administration headquarters to urge the agency to “evolve” from its drug war mindset—a play on Stanley Kubrick’s classic film 2001: A Space Odyssey.

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released new podcasts about hemp.

Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control Co-chair Chuck Grassley (R-IA) asked witnesses at a hearing if the U.S. has “lost the war on marijuana.”

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) said there’s momentum behind marijuana reform at the state level and “it’s a matter of time” before it is federally legalized, though there needs to be action on cannabis banking “right now.”

The House bill to allow CBD as a dietary supplement got one new cosponsor for a total of 32.

The House bill to require the Department of Veterans Affairs to study medical cannabis got one new cosponsor for a total of two.

/ STATES

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) signed a bill to ease restrictions on owning and investing in minority-, women- and veteran-owned medical cannabis businesses.

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried, currently the agriculture commissioner, called for a state investigation into a new medical cannabis rule issued by regulators that she says creates financial and regulatory burdens that only apply to black farmers.

Ohio Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Cranley, currently Cincinnati’s mayor, tweeted, “Instead of criminalizing marijuana we should legalize it and invest that money back into our communities. My plan will tax marijuana and use the revenue to create 30,000 jobs per year that pay a minimum of $60,000 per year to build the vital infrastructure that Ohio needs.”

The New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee voted to send marijuana legalization bills to interim study, delaying their consideration.

A Mississippi senator detailed new changes in the latest version of a draft medical cannabis bill.

A New York senator slammed the New York Post for its alarmist reporting about a new law that decriminalizes syringes.

An Oklahoma activist filed a court challenge against other activists’ proposed marijuana legalization and medical cannabis ballot initiatives.

Michigan’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development sent a press release urging farmers to participate in a federal hemp survey.

Montana regulators proposed marijuana rules and will hold a public hearing on November 16.

Louisiana regulators proposed changes to medical cannabis cultivation rules.

Connecticut regulators proposed recommendations for a public education campaign about marijuana.

South Dakota regulators issued a contract to a company to manage the state’s medical cannabis patient and business registration system.

Massachusetts regulators posted a medical cannabis FAQ.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.

/ INTERNATIONAL

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said his government will explore ways to reduce barriers to research on psilocybin and other drugs.

Switzerland’s Social Security and Health Commission of the Council of States recommended that the country legalize marijuana.

Costa Rica’s Congress approved a bill to legalize medical cannabis.

The Philippine Department of Justice released information about 50 deadly operations in the nation’s bloody “war on drugs.”

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “about half of participants who ever used CBD for pain reported improved pain, and many substitute CBD for pain medications including opioids and benzodiazepines.”

A case study suggested “a significant analgesic effect of cannabis in the treatment of symptomatic headaches.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll of German citizens found that 30 percent support legalizing marijuana and 59 percent back medical cannabis.

Americans Against Legalizing Marijuana highlighted the fact that Nikolas Cruz, who pleaded guilty to committing the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, said he believes “this country would do better if everyone would stop smoking marijuana and doing all these drugs” during remarks in court.

The American Family Association is working to dissuade Mississippi lawmakers from passing a medical cannabis bill.

The HIV Legal Network, Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, Canadian Association of People who Use Drugs and other groups sent a letter urging Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to prioritize drug policy reform in mandates to his new Cabinet.

/ BUSINESS

HEXO Corp has a new CEO.

COMPASS Pathways plc was granted a U.S. patent for crystalline psilocybin.

/ CULTURE

Ziggy Marley called out Singapore’s government for sentencing a man to death for possessing two pounds of cannabis.

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