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McConnell “guarantees” hemp legalization (Newsletter: Nov. 12, 2018)



VA secretary talks medical cannabis; Feds issue marijuana joint rolling contract; Legalization would give Illinois big economic boost, study finds

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) issued a “guarantee” that hemp legalization will be in the finalized Farm Bill.

Veterans Affairs Sec. Robert Wilkie said his department is open to exploring medical cannabis as an option for veterans, but only if federal law changes.

The federal government posted a notice that it is seeking to hire professional marijuana joint rollers…kind of. Part of a new National Institute on Drug Abuse contract is to produce “standardized marijuana cigarettes” with strains of various potencies.

A new analysis on the benefits of legalizing marijuana in Illinois found that it would:

  • Create 24,000 jobs
  • Generate more than $500 million in tax revenue
  • Infuse about $1 billion into the state economy overall by 2020


Incoming House Rules Committee Chairman James McGovern (D-MA) says he will allow floor votes on marijuana amendments.

Acting U.S Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has voiced support for the right of states to nullify federal laws, a prospect that has obvious implications for marijuana legalization.

Customs and Border Protection officials said they have seen a spike in marijuana seizures at the Canadian border.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) tweeted, “We need to decriminalize marijuana. The fight to pass the Marijuana Justice Act is about combating discrimination against communities of color. It’s about putting a stop to injustice. It’s about creating a fairer, more equal society.”

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) tweeted, “Michigan has just become the 10th state to legalize recreational marijuana. Missouri and Utah also passed medicinal marijuana. The tide is turning. As long as we keep pushing forward, cannabis prohibition will become a thing of the past.” He also tweeted, “After decades of failed drug policies, any effort to legalize marijuana must include expunging low-level offenses and reinvesting in communities of color.”

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) tweeted, “Thankful for the service of our armed forces this Veterans Day. Our vets must receive the respect and care that they have nobly earned and should be given equal access to medical marijuana if they choose.”


Utah lawmakers are expected to consider a compromise medical cannabis bill during a special session beginning December 3.

New Jersey lawmakers are aiming to vote on marijuana legalization on the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Florida Democratic agriculture commissioner candidate Nikki Fried, who supports marijuana reform, declared victory in a narrow race.

Vermont election results could bolster the chances of legalizing marijuana sales.

Here’s a look at the prospects for Illinois marijuana legalization in 2019.

Colorado regulators proposed rules changes for recreational marijuana and medical cannabis.

Ohio regulators are considering petitions to add new medical cannabis qualifying conditions.

A New York senator says it is important to protect the state’s medical cannabis program if marijuana is legalized.


South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D), who has been floated as a potential 2020 presidential candidate, said that voters in Indiana are ready for marijuana legalization.


A UK lord is calling for the legalization of drugs as a violence reduction measure.


The Fraternal Order of Police announced its support for limited criminal justice reform legislation.


A review concluded that “CBD shows similar efficacy to established antiepileptic drugs.”

A study on driving found that “chronic marijuana users had slower reaction times, deviated less in speed, and had difficulty matching a lead vehicle’s speed compared to nonusers.”


The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged Greenview Investment Partners L.P. with defrauding investors.

The Brink’s Company entered into a multi-year agreement to provide secure logistics and cash management services for Canopy Growth Corporation.


Jimmy Kimmel Live did a segment from a Las Vegas marijuana dispensary.

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


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