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Majority of Biden-Sanders task force backs legal cannabis (Newsletter: May 14, 2020)

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Poll: Legal marijuana state resident say it’s a success; Few DEA comments as research deadline nears; LA lawmakers vote to expand medical cannabis

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

A majority of members of a criminal justice reform task force created by former Vice President Joe Biden (D) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) have gone further than the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee by publicly endorsing marijuana legalization. Advocates hope the group can get Biden to further evolve on cannabis by November.

With a little more than a week left to send feedback on a Drug Enforcement Administration proposal that gives the agency itself exclusive control over marijuana used in scientific research, only 31 people have so far submitted public comments on the plan.

A poll found that a majority of people in legal marijuana states believe the policy is a success. Even in Maine, where recreational shops aren’t haven’t opened yet, residents still say legal cannabis is working by a more than 2-to-1 margin. In Colorado, support is at 71%-17%.

The Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee again voted to advance legislation to add new medical cannabis qualifying conditions, and members also discussed a proposal to enact price controls on products.

/ FEDERAL

The National Institute on Drug Abuse tweeted, “Changes in state #marijuana policies suggest that the drug is gaining greater acceptance in our society. As a result, it has become increasingly important to understand its adverse health effects and potential therapeutic benefits.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture published another short podcast on risk management options available to hemp producers.

House Ways and Means Committee Republicans tweeted, “The American people know what is at stake, but does Pelosi? Instead of writing a bill that provides real relief she gave us a partisan wishlist that: ➡️Uses the word cannabis more than #COVID19 testing…”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) tweeted, “Dems $3T ‘stimulus’ bill uses word ‘cannabis’ 68 times (more than the word ‘jobs.’ Not terribly surprising, since we know smoking pot can make you repeat yourself….”

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) tweeted, “[email protected]’s $3 trillion bill is a liberal wish list that’s dead on arrival in the Senate. When your ‘jobs’ bill mentions cannabis more than jobs, there’s a problem.”

Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) said that “the word cannabis appears more times in Democrats’ bill than the word job.”

Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN) tweeted, “Cannabis is mentioned 68 times and women owned cannabis related business is featured as well. Regardless of your stance on weed why is this in a Coronavirus relief bill?”

Here’s a look at where Wisconsin congressional candidates stand on marijuana.

/ STATES

The Colorado Governor’s Office of State Planning and Budgeting projected a drop in marijuana tax revenue resulting from a decline in tourism during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Arizona Supreme Court rejected a lawsuit seeking the ability to electronically collect signatures for ballot measures, but a marijuana legalization effort says it will likely qualify anyway.

Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner tweeted, “Enjoying my hemp derived face mask produced by @ecofibre using @hempblackusa carbon. We believe hemp has tremendous medical and health potential with antibacterial properties.”

The Minnesota House of Representatives approved an agriculture bill that classifies hemp licensee and applicant data as private.

California regulators determined that the cannabis mark-up rate will remain the same through the end of the year.

Montana regulators extended the deadline for hemp cultivation license applications to June 1.

Washington State regulators are hosting a listen and learn forum on draft conceptual rules regarding marijuana true party of interest rules on Wednesday.

An Alabama senator whose medical cannabis legislation passed the Senate this year said he will reintroduce the bill exactly as approved by the chamber next session in order to ease its path to enactment.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 cannabis 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

New York City’s public advocate issued a statement celebrating the city’s ban on pre-employment marijuana testing going into effect.

/ INTERNATIONAL

A report from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on arbitrary deprivation of liberty during public health emergencies includes people who use drugs as a vulnerable population.

Israel’s economy minister signed an order allowing medical cannabis exports.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A review concluded that “THC+CBD chemovars may mitigate anxiety, symptoms of psychosis and certain cognitive impairments provoked by THC-dominant chemovars, particularly when administered orally.”

A study examined ” investors’ propensity toward classifying marijuana businesses as socially responsible investments.”

Ohio State University is conducting a survey on patients’ experiences with the state’s medical cannabis program.

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The American Civil Liberties Union published a podcast on the need for racial equity in marijuana policy.

The National Cannabis Roundtable announced leadership and membership changes.

/ BUSINESS

Aleafia Health Inc.  reported $14.6 million in quarterly net revenue and a net loss of $6.2 million.

/ CULTURE

Actress Jane Fonda signed on as a brand ambassador for CBD company Uncle Bud’s.

Former boxer Mike Tyson said his cannabis company plans to launch a new Punch Out video game.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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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 Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

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