Nebraska Sen. Anna Wishart will introduce medical cannabis bill in early 2019 - Cannabis News

“If a ballot initiative is brought in Nebraska, there is no doubt in my mind it will pass."

Republican Chris Holbert proudly touts his ranking as one of the most conservative members of the Colorado General Assembly.

While the Senate majority leader still thinks allowing people to buy a high is a bad thing, he holds a different view of medical marijuana.

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Joe Duggan ~ Omaha.com ~ 

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Election 2018: A Complete Guide to Cannabis on the Ballot - Cannabis News

Cannabis legalization goes before the voters in a number of states on Nov. 6.

This year’s highlights: Michigan and North Dakota will decide statewide measures on the legalization of adult-use cannabis.

Utah and Missouri will consider medical marijuana legalization initiatives.

Other states will consider smaller reforms or advisory measures, including Ohio and Wisconsin.

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Minnesota: Recreational Marijuana Creates Buzz on Campaign Trail for Governor - Cannabis News

Medical marijuana is legal in Minnesota, but allowing recreational marijuana use for adults is an issue the candidates have been talking about on the campaign trail for Minnesota governor.

A KSTP/SurveyUSA poll conducted earlier this month found 56 percent of registered voters said they would support legalization of recreational marijuana for residents over 21-years-old, while 35 percent said no, and 10 percent were not sure.

"I trust adults to make their own decisions," said Tim Walz, DFL Candidate for Governor. Walz once called it “Pot for Potholes” at a previous candidate forum.

Walz supported medical marijuana and feels the state could legalize recreational use and tax the product.

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Feds Would Compile Tips For Growing Marijuana Under Proposal Advancing In Congress - Cannabis News

“If this bill moves forward, I hope NIDA, DEA and FDA will seek significant input from experienced cannabis growers as they develop standards for good manufacturing practices.”

A key congressional committee approved a bill last week that would require the Department of Justice to issue more licenses for people to grow marijuana for research.

But lost in the excitement about the historic vote, a little-noticed amendment got attached to the legislation that would have additional surprising impacts for cannabis policy.

The provision directs federal agencies to compile a list of “good manufacturing practices for growing and producing marijuana.”

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Sen. Dianne Feinstein Signs Onto Marijuana Bill After Decades Of Drug War Advocacy - Cannabis News

A bill that would amend federal law to give states the autonomy to set their own marijuana policies gained a tenth cosponsor last week, and a somewhat surprising one at that.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has long been one of Congress’s most vocal opponents of legalizing cannabis.

But now she’s backing legislation to end federal prohibition so that states like hers can implement legalization without interference.

The bill, nicknamed the STATES Act, was introduced by Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Cory Gardner (R-CO) in June.

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Marijuana Bill Approved By Congressional Committee, Despite Drug Conviction Restriction Dispute - Cannabis News

A powerful U.S. House panel that oversees federal drug enforcement efforts approved a bill on Thursday to require the Department of Justice and Attorney General Jeff Sessions to begin issuing more licenses to grow marijuana for research.

Prior to the vote, a bitter dispute broke out over a provision of the legislation that prevents anyone with a “conviction for a felony or drug-related misdemeanor” from being affiliated with cannabis research cultivation operations.

“There is no legitimate health or public safety justification for the inclusion of this language and we urge you to strike this unnecessary, punitive ban on individuals with previous drug law violations,” reads a letter sent to the committee's leaders on Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights Watch, #cut50, the Drug Policy Alliance and other groups. 

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Tom Angell ~ Forbes.com ~ 

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Marijuana In Texas: Where Ted Cruz And Beto O’Rourke Stand On Legalization - Cannabis News

When Texas voters hit the polls in November, they’ll face a choice between two U.S. Senate candidates who have significantly divergent views on marijuana and are facing off in one of the nation’s most-watched races, the result of which could determine whether Democrats or Republicans end up controlling Congress’s upper chamber.

Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) is taking on incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who is running for a second term.

Polling reveals a surprisingly tight race—with O’Rourke behind by about four points on average—and while marijuana isn’t exactly center stage for either campaign, it’s clear how the candidates differ on the issue. 

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Kyle Jaeger ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~ 

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Vets' medical marijuana debate revived - Cannabis News

Medical marijuana for veterans is having another moment on Capitol Hill.

As lawmakers work to wrap-up their pre-election work in the next three weeks, they’re also considering a host of proposals that could have wide-ranging effects on veterans' ability to access cannabis for a host of ailments.

Among the ideas are broadening research into the medicinal effects of cannabis, allowing veterans to discuss use of marijuana with Veterans Affairs physicians, and new legislation introduced this week which would essentially decriminalize the drug for veterans across the country. 

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Leo Shane III ~ MilitaryTimes.com ~ 

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Missouri Will Vote on Medical Marijuana This November - Cannabis News

All three ballot measures would legalize, regulate and tax medical cannabis, with some key differences.

On November 6, Missouri voters won’t just have a choice between prohibition and legal medical cannabis — they’ll get to choose among three different legalization measures, each of which takes its own approach toward a regulated and taxed cannabis industry.

All three bills received certification from the Secretary of State’s office last week. Now, they’ll have to survive one more week of a 10-day interval in which those opposed can legally challenge the bills.

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Adam Drury ~ HighTimes.com ~ 

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These 4 Red-Leaning States Have Big Marijuana Decisions to Make This November - Cannabis News

Two will vote on marijuana legalization; two on medical marijuana.

Nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana since 2012, but all of those states have been in the West or the Northeast.

This year, with marijuana legalization on the ballot in Michigan as well as North Dakota, legal weed could make a heartland breakthrough.

Similarly, medical marijuana’s rise to acceptance continues, and this year, Missouri and Utah look set to join the ranks.

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Marijuana referendum questions go to voters Nov. 6 in 16 Wisconsin counties, two cities - Cannabis News

When voters in 16 Wisconsin counties and two cities go to the polls Nov. 6 they will join a nationwide debate by marking their ballots for or against legalizing marijuana use either for medical reasons or personal recreation.

The advisory referendum questions are scattered on local ballots throughout the state, from Milwaukee and Dane to La Crosse and Langlade counties and the cities of Waukesha and Racine.

All were approved by county boards or city councils.

Supportive officials and marijuana legalization activists say the referendums will provide a measure of public opinion that can be shared with the state Legislature, and possibly spur new laws relaxing or eliminating current prohibitions on pot.

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Warren: If Democrats take Senate, they'll vote on marijuana bill - Cannabis News

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Ma.) said she is confident that Democrats would vote on a marijuana bill that would allow states to regulate marijuana without federal interference should they retake the Senate in November.

"I feel confident that if the Democrats recapture the Senate we’ll get a vote on this, and the vote will carry," Warren said in an interview with Rolling Stone of the bipartisan bill, which Warren co-sponsored.

"I think we’ve got the votes for this." Warren said she has been pushing Republicans to convince Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to relax his hard-line stance against the federal ban on marijuana.

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Emily Birnbaum ~ TheHill.com ~ 

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Connecticut Legislature: Medical marijuana approved for migraines and more - Cannabis News

Patients with migraines, rheumatoid arthritis and muscular dystrophy soon will be able to treat their ailments with medical marijuana in Connecticut.

The Legislature’s Regulation Review Committee unanimously voted Tuesday to expand the approved uses of medical marijuana for palliative care.

The state anticipates a “relatively significant increase” of patients joining the medical marijuana program as a result of these new uses, said Lora Rae Anderson, spokesman for the Department of Consumer Protection, which oversees the state’s medical marijuana program.

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Emilie Munson ~ CTPost.com ~

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With billions in marijuana cash unbanked, Pa. leads an appeal to Congress for protections - Cannabis News

Currently about 70 percent of all American "plant touching" marijuana businesses — growers and dispensaries — reportedly lack bank accounts.

With millions of dollars in medical marjuana proceeds — all cash — being moved across Pennsylvania monthly in unmarked cars, state banking regulators have appealed to leaders in the U.S. Congress to create protections for financial institutions so that banks and credit unions might serve the state cannabis industry.

The Wolf Administration on Friday sent a letter making the request to Congress' top leaders: U.S. Reps. Paul Ryan, R.-Wis., and Nancy Pelosi, D-Ca. and U.S. Sens. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

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Sam Wood ~ Philly.com ~

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Pot for the People: New Bill Would Allow Federal Employees to Access Weed - Cannabis News

As federal agencies actively recruit veterans, a new bill would allow government employees to legally get the treatment that is proving helpful for PTSD and pain management: marijuana.

After losing his legs fighting with his Marine Corps unit in Afghanistan in 2010, Paul was put on a steady regimen of OxyContin, a potent, highly addictive and, back then, heavily prescribed opiate.

After years of intense rehab — as soon as he was physically, mentally and emotionally strong enough — he weaned himself off a daily pharmaceutical cocktail (which also included Ambien, Methadone, Seroquel, etc.) in part by replacing those concentrated chemical compounds with consuming marijuana four to five times a week.

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Matt Laslo ~ RollingStone.com ~ 

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Senator Elizabeth Warren says feds should ‘back off’ marijuana legalization - Cannabis News

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) thinks that the federal government should keep its hands off the increasing number of states legalizing cannabis.

Warren spoke to Jen Rogers on the Final Round to talk about her support for a bipartisan bill that would restrict federal agencies from interfering with individuals and businesses acting in compliance with state marijuana laws.

Under the proposal, “federal law can stay in place, but if a state has acted and the state has decided to legalize, then the federal government should just back off,” Warren said.

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Oscar Pascual ~ SFGate.com ~ 

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New Jersey Senate President Says He Has the Votes to Legalize Pot - Cannabis News

“Don’t be surprised when people who say they were against it vote for it,” Sweeney said, predicting Republicans who support expanding medical marijuana will support legalization, too.

Proponents of legalizing the recreational use of marijuana have been disappointed in the amount of time it is taking Gov. Phil Murphy and the Democratic legislature to approve such a measure.

But Senate President Steve Sweeney now says he has the votes to pass such a bill by the end of next month, according to POLITICO.

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Observer.com ~ 

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Legal Weed: How Republicans Learned to Love Marijuana - Cannabis News

As state experimentation with legalization grew, media coverage of marijuana's supposed health benefits increased, and public opinion and demographics shifted, Republicans -- some of whom had touted their hard-line stances as unalterable -- began to soften.

Jason Isaac, a fourth-generation Texan and conservative state representative, has a clear memory of his first mind-­expanding encounter with marijuana.

It was January 2015, and the Texas state Capitol building was swarming with lawmakers returning to work.

Two women were sitting on the stairwell opposite his office, waiting for him. He sat down with the pair—his constituents—and heard their stories. One had a child with intractable epilepsy, the other a child with severe autism.

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Wyoming Governor Candidates Talk Marijuana - Cannabis News

With the primary election just one week away, candidates discussed marijuana - legalizing it, decriminalizing it, medical use, taxes, and more.

"I am for medical marijuana." Republican Candidate Bill Dahlin said. "Who are we as a government to deny people from being better? That just doesn't make any sense to me. So yeah, I am in favor of medical marijuana... I think number one because of the health."

"If it wasn't healthy, or didn't have a health benefit, it'd be a whole different ball game. But it does have a health benefit, and it's going to help the health sector."

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Danielle Seat ~ kgwn.tv ~ 

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North Dakota to vote on recreational marijuana in November - Cannabis News

North Dakotans will vote this November on a ballot measure to legalize recreational marijuana, state officials announced Monday.

Secretary of State Al Jaeger said that Legalize ND, the group leading the charge to get the question on the ballot, submitted 14,637 signatures last month, about 1,200 more than required. If passed, the ballot measure would permit “non-violent marijuana related activity” for North Dakotans aged 21 and up, according to the Grand Forks Herald.

If passed, the ballot measure would permit “non-violent marijuana related activity” for North Dakotans aged 21 and up, according to the Grand Forks Herald.

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Avery Anapol ~ TheHill.com ~

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Pot Business Expected to Boom, Lighting Up Pressure on Lawmakers - Cannabis News

More that a dozen states expected to expand legalization by 2025, report says.

With marijuana legalization measures expected to pass in 13 more states by 2025, the legal pot market would reach more than $30 billion, according to an industry report released Thursday.

The trend is bound to increase pressure on lawmakers to stake positions on one of the country’s most rapidly evolving social issues — the legalization of pot and cannabis — according to the report from New Frontier Data, a nonpartisan market research firm.

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Stephanie Akin ~ RollCall.com ~ 

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After visiting Colorado, Indiana lawmaker says medical marijuana is right for Indiana - Cannabis News

He said of his trip to Colorado, "it removed all doubt in my mind that this is the right thing to do for Indiana," saying it would "save lives."

An Indiana lawmaker has done something that would have gotten him arrested had he done it in Indiana. But Republican State Rep. Jim Lucas was in Colorado.

What he did was legal there and he's not afraid to talk about it. On the contrary, the three-term representative from Seymour has become a leading voice for legalizing medical marijuana in Indiana.

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Mary Milz ~ WTHR.com ~ 

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Congress Finally Can Tell Hemp From Pot - Cannabis News

For almost 50 years, hemp has been lumped together with heroin, LSD, and Ecstasy, but new legislation could soon make the crop legal for farmers still struggling from the loss of tobacco.

Hemp is currently a Schedule I federally controlled substance, in the same legal category as LSD, heroin, and Ecstasy.

Like all forms of cannabis, it was criminalized in 1970, partially because Congress was worried that law enforcement couldn’t tell the difference between hemp and marijuana.

“There was tremendous biological understanding of the difference, but Congress was not making policy based on this—they were basing it on fear,” said John Hudak, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and the author of Marijuana: A Short History.

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How a Pair of Kentucky Politicians Are About to Legalize Hemp - Cannabis News

The non-hallucinogenic sister plant of marijuana is a favorite with farmers, and it will get a lot easier to grow if Congress removes it from the list of banned drugs.

On nights that Congress is in session, Rep. James Comer, a farmer from Kentucky, lays down on a fold-up mattress in his office on the fifth floor of the Longworth building and hits the lights by 10:30.

Before he does, he reaches for a small bottle of CBD oil (made from Kentucky hemp) and squeezes a couple of drops onto his tongue.

“If I miss a night or two and don’t take it, my joints hurt really bad, especially in my hands in the morning,” Comer, a dedicated recreational golfer, told me. “But when I take it, I don’t have any joint pain.”

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Legislators From Across US Push Feds To Respect State Marijuana Laws - Cannabis News

A group representing thousands of lawmakers from around the U.S. is calling on the federal government to end marijuana prohibition so that states can enact their own cannabis policies without intervention.

“The federal government should respect state decisions to regulate cannabis, including hemp in non-FDA approved cannabis products,” reads one of two new policy directives adopted on Wednesday by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

“NCSL believes that federal laws, including the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), should be amended to explicitly allow states to set their own cannabis policies without federal interference and urges the administration not to undermine state cannabis policies.”

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Tom Angell ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~ 

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Employment Rights For Marijuana Consumers Would Be Protected Under New Bill - Cannabis News

The federal government won’t be able to fire its employees for marijuana use that is legal under state law if a new bipartisan bill is enacted.

Introduced on Thursday by Congressman Charlie Crist (D-FL) and Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-GA), the proposal would “remove limitations on Federal employment for an individual legally using marijuana under the law of the State in which the individual resides,” according to the bill title.

The legislation builds on a narrower amendment Crist filed earlier this year that would have protected military veterans who work for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs from being fired for state-legal marijuana use. 

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Tom Angell ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~ 

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As more states legalize marijuana, advocates see signs suggesting Texas may move that way - Cannabis News

In Texas, both political parties now support loosening the restrictions on marijuana in their platforms. That's just the clearest sign that both public opinion and the political calculus on pot are rapidly shifting.

Texas isn’t likely to be the next Colorado or California. The state almost certainly won’t be the next one to legalize recreational marijuana use.

But there are signs that both the public opinion and political calculus on pot are shifting in Texas, with advocates hopeful that those shifts could yield significant progress during next year’s legislative session.

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Alex Samuels ~ TexasTribune.org ~ 

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Federal Report On Marijuana Legalization Required Under New Bill - Cannabis News

What is the impact of marijuana legalization in states that have adopted it? That's what the proponents of a newly filed U.S. House bill are hoping to find out.

The Marijuana Data Collection Act, introduced on Tuesday by Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) and a bipartisan group of cosponsors, would direct the Department of Health and Human Services to partner with other federal and state government agencies to study "the effects of State legalized marijuana programs on the economy, public health, criminal justice and employment."

"For decades, bad data and misinformation have fueled the failed war on drugs that's wasted billions of taxpayer dollars, incarcerating Americans for nonviolent marijuana charges," Gabbard said in House floor speech previewing the bill on Monday evening.

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Tom Angell ~ Forbes.com ~ 

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Oklahoma: Cannabis Advocates Rally At State Capitol - Cannabis News

Demonstrators took to the Capitol Sunday to protest the State Department of Health’s regulations over medical marijuana.

“We're mad as hell. We're not going to take it anymore,” Ron Welchel said, referencing the theme of the rally.

Welchel was one of dozens of State Question 788 supporters who showed up for the demonstration.

“All the people in the state were really for it. Then we got the wind let out of our sails when it all kind of went south. We need it fixed,” Welchel said.

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Who Should Regulate Marijuana? Most Say States Over the Federal Government - Cannabis News

Experts say every state will have legal or recreational marijuana rules on the books in next five years.

More of the public is getting behind the idea of decriminalizing marijuana, according to new polling.

Yet the legalization of cannabis is a patchwork quilt of local legislation that greenlights the drug for medical use in some states and provides full legal protection for recreational use in others.

A new national survey shows a majority believe individual states, as opposed to the federal government, should be regulating marijuana.

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Florida approves $13.2 million for medical marijuana - Cannabis News

Unhappy with the progress of the state Office of Medical Marijuana Use, state lawmakers agreed to spend an additional $13.2 million to cover unforeseen costs of implementing medical marijuana in the state.

More than half of the money will go towards processing applications for four new growers licenses.

Some questioned why the department didn’t anticipate the need earlier.

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Jake Stofan ~ Capitol News Service via wctv.tv ~

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Where Texas politicians stand on marijuana - Cannabis News

More than half of Texas' registered voters believe marijuana should be legalized, a recent poll discovered. As is the case with other issues, it appears the attitude of Texas' lawmakers and the public may not align in the matter of cannabis.

With Texas Republicans already listing out their priorities for the upcoming legislative session — including the possibility of decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana possession — it's worth taking a look at where the state's top lawmakers stand on major aspects of marijuana reform.

Cannabis Voter Project, a group that tracks politicians' views on cannabis, shows that only four of the state's 36 members of Congress believe in ending cannabis prohibition at a federal level.

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Fernando Ramirez ~ Chron.com ~

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Georgia: An endorsement highlights slight GOP shift on medical marijuana - Cannabis News

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Secretary of State Brian Kemp are both open to researching new ways to expand access to medical marijuana if elected governor, though neither Republican candidate has explicitly endorsed legalizing the in-state cultivation of the drug.

That’s a shift that state Rep. Allen Peake, who wrote the state’s medical cannabis law, has long sought as essential for Georgian suffering from debilitating diseases.

And on Tuesday he endorsed Cagle as the best GOP candidate to solve “the medical cannabis access issue early in his first year in office.”

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Greg Bluestein ~ Atlanta Journal-Constitution ~

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The next state to legalize marijuana could be . . . North Dakota? - Cannabis News

Supporters of marijuana legalization in North Dakota have submitted more than 18,000 signatures to the secretary of state in support of a measure that would fully legalize the drug, well above the 13,452 signatures required to put the question on the November ballot.

Like a recent successful medical-marijuana measure in Oklahoma, the effort has largely flown under the radar, with no financial backing from national drug policy groups such as the Drug Policy Alliance and the Marijuana Policy Project.

And like Oklahoma, North Dakota is a deep-red state that hasn’t voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1964.

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Christopher Ingraham ~ WashingtonPost.com ~

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Could Legal Marijuana Tip the Senate for Democrats? - Cannabis News

Cautious incumbents are using it to shore up support from progressive voters and challengers are seizing on the issue’s high popularity to knock conservatives.

When Senator Bill Nelson came out squarely in favor of Floridians’ right to smoke medical marijuana, it surprised many political observers in the Sunshine State.

Nelson, a conservative Democrat who promotes his reputation as a ramrod former astronaut, has mostly kept out of the fray during the years-long battle over medical marijuana—both before it passed in 2016 with 71 percent of the vote and in the year and half since, as supporters have battled the state’s Republican leadership over how to implement the new law.

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James Higdon ~ Politico.com ~ 

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Maine Lawmakers Override Gov. LePage's Medical Marijuana Veto - Cannabis News

Maine physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants will be able to recommend medical marijuana for any patient they think would benefit under a new law.

Lawmakers overrode the governor's veto Monday with near-unanimous support.

The law eliminates the list of medical conditions that an individual would currently need to prove to receive medical marijuana.

The law allows qualifying patients and unregistered caregivers to possess eight pounds of medical marijuana, up from 2.5 ounces. 

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Marijuana politics evolving in red states - Cannabis News

Supporters and opponents of legalizing marijuana are preparing to fight over ballot measures in half a dozen states this year, shifting the political battleground away from traditionally liberal states and into some of the country’s most conservative areas.

Two measures are already scheduled to appear on November ballots: Michigan voters will decide whether to become the ninth state to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes, while the electorate in Utah will choose whether to join 22 other states by legalizing pot for medical use.

In Missouri, as many as three separate measures could make the ballot.

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Reid Wilson ~ TheHill.com ~ 

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Utah’s medical marijuana initiative appears headed for the November ballot after opponents drop their federal lawsuit - Cannabis News

The opponents seeking to block voters from weighing in on a ballot measure legalizing medical marijuana withdrew their lawsuit on Monday, after asking a judge in May for an emergency ruling to stop the initiative.

The withdrawal clears the path for what is perhaps the most contested measure that will be on Utah’s ballot in November, yet which has strong support among voters.

Blake T. Ostler, an attorney for the group Drug Safe Utah, which is led by the Utah Medical Association, said he believed there was an issue with challenging the measure before voters weigh in. The challenge lacked what, in legal terms, is called “ripeness.”

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Taylor W. Anderson ~ Salt Lake Tribune ~ 

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This New Website Tells You Where Every Politician Stands on Marijuana - Cannabis News

The Cannabis Voter Project is a website that helps track the marijuana views of members of Congress as well as governors for every state.

2018 is a major election year in the United States as Democrats try to retake control of Congress to stop President Donald Trump's agenda.

But now a new website will help you see where politicians stand on a more important issue: Marijuana.

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Joseph Misulonas ~ Civilized.Life ~ 

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Missouri ready for medical marijuana? - Cannabis News

With voters making Oklahoma the 30th state in the nation to legalize medical marijuana last Tuesday, advocacy groups in Missouri are hoping to ride the wave into the November election.

Four initiative petitions seeking legalization of medical marijuana were submitted to the Secretary of State’s Office for certification this year, and the group behind one of those is confident it will make it on the ballot.

New Approach Missouri is one of the leading medical marijuana advocacy groups in Missouri and has been working for years to get the question before voters.

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Tyler Wornell ~ JoplinGlobe.com ~ 

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Oklahoma votes to legalize medicinal marijuana - Cannabis News

The state of Oklahoma became the 30th in the nation to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes on Tuesday.

The Associated Press projected that State Question 778, which legalizes the growth, sale, and use of marijuana for medicinal purposes, had been approved by voters.

According to Forbes, the measure was approved by a 10-point margin, with more than 85 percent of precincts reporting.

Gov. Mary Fallin (R), who opposed the measure because she believed it would create a gateway to legal marijuana for recreational use, said she would likely convene a special legislative session to design a framework for the law's implementation, The Associated Press reported.

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Oklahoma voters weigh 1st marijuana ballot question of 2018 - Cannabis News

Oklahoma primary voters were weighing Tuesday whether to approve one of the least-restrictive state laws allowing medical marijuana, the nation’s first cannabis ballot question of the year.

State Question 788 , the result of an activist-led signature drive launched more than two years ago, would make it legal to grow, sell and use marijuana for medicinal purposes.

The proposed law outlines no qualifying conditions, which would allow physicians to prescribe its use for a broad range of ailments — a fact that has sparked bitter opposition from law enforcement, business, faith and political leaders.

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Associated Press via WTOP.com ~ 

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Senate Approves Medical Marijuana For Military Veterans And Advances Hemp Legalization - Cannabis News

U.S. military veterans would be allowed to receive recommendations for medical marijuana from government doctors under legislation approved by the Senate on Monday.

The provision, part of large-scale legislation to fund parts of the federal government including the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) through Fiscal Year 2019, would also protect veterans from losing their government benefits as a result of cannabis use that is legal under state law.

The Senate passed the bill by a vote of 86 to 5. The House and Senate have previously adopted versions of the cannabis recommendation rider, but it has never been enacted into law. 

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Tom Angell ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~

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Arizona Mothers Challenge State Over Autism and CBD Oil - Cannabis News

Only five states specifically allow autism patients to legally access whole plant cannabis, so long as they get the appropriate doctor recommendations.

The Arizona chapter of MAMMA, Mothers Advocating Medical Marijuana for Autism, is working hard to make their state the sixth on the list—and they’ll take their case to state officials in Phoenix this week.

This will be the group’s second meeting with officials from the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS), which regulates the list of qualifying conditions.

In early May, MAMMA members convened for three days with ADHS officials to consider the organization’s petition to let medical professionals recommend medical cannabis for autistic children.

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New York Moves Toward Legal Marijuana With Health Dept. Endorsement - Cannabis News

New York moved a significant step closer to legalizing recreational marijuana, as a study commissioned by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo will recommend that the state allow adults to consume marijuana legally, the governor’s health commissioner said on Monday.

The announcement by the commissioner, Howard Zucker, signals a broad turnaround for the administration of Mr. Cuomo, a second-term Democrat who said as recently as last year that marijuana was a “gateway drug.”

“We looked at the pros, we looked at the cons, and when we were done, we realized that the pros outweighed the cons,” Dr. Zucker said, adding, “we have new facts.”

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Jesse McKinley and Benjamin Mueller ~ NYTimes.com ~ 

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Medical marijuana passes by a landslide in South Carolina Democratic primary - Cannabis News

South Carolina Democrats gave medical marijuana a landslide victory Tuesday, with 82 percent declaring in an advisory vote that doctors should be allowed to prescribe the drug.

The question “Do you support passing a state law allowing doctors to prescribe medical marijuana to patients?” was approved by Democrats in all of the state's 46 counties during Tuesday's primary.

The nonbinding ballot initiative is the latest boost for legalized medical marijuana, which has been embraced by key committees in both the S.C. House and Senate.

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Jeff Wilkinson ~ TheState.com ~ 

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Boehner, 7 U.S. Mayors Blast Feds on Marijuana Legalization: ‘Prohibition Has Failed’ – Cannabis News

Former Ohio Republican Congressman and Speaker of the House John Boehner joined several U.S. mayors this week in telling the federal government to get out of the way of marijuana legalization.

Boehner, a longtime staunch opponent of marijuana, joined the advisory board of Acreage Holdings, a cannabis investment firm that pursues cultivation and dispensary businesses in addition to touting cannabis’s “transformational power to heal and change the world.”

Speaking with WCPO-TV on Monday, Boehner touted the effectiveness of medical marijuana treatment for military veterans, opioid addicts and children with epilepsy.

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Benjamin Fearnow ~ Newsweek.com ~ 

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Bill to End Federal Cannabis War Gathers Steam - Cannabis News

A strange-bedfellows mix of powerful state governors and members of Congress signed on to end the decades-old war on marijuana – via the newly introduced STATES Act.

Momentum seemed to build over the weekend for the bill, introduced Thursday by Sen. Corey Gardner (R-CO) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

On Friday, the governors of California and New York, as well as their counterparts in ten other states, urged Congressional leaders to advance the bill.

California Gov. Jerry Brown endorsed the plan to exempt legalization states from federal pot law in a joint letter with Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, Washington Gov. Jay Isnlee and others.

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Mayors From Across U.S. Call On Feds To Deschedule Marijuana - Cannabis News

A group representing mayors of cities across the country is pushing the federal government to enact a series of major marijuana law reforms.

The U.S. Conference of Mayors is also calling on cities in states that have legalized cannabis to expunge people’s past convictions.

“The looming threat of federal prosecution or shutdown lends uncertainty to states and local governments and legally compliant commercial cannabis business operators, patients and adult-use consumers, and harms state and local efforts to regulate cannabis for the safety and health of its residents,” reads one of the two measures adopted by the mayors group on Monday.

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Tom Angell ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~ 

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Senators Approve Medical Marijuana For Military Veterans - Cannabis News

A key U.S. Senate panel voted on Thursday to allow doctors with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to issue medical marijuana recommendations to military veterans.

The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the amendment, offered by Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR), on a voice vote.

The measure “simply allows veterans to discuss that option [medical cannabis] with their VA doc or physician,” Daines said during a brief debate.

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Tom Angell ~ MarijuanaMoment.net ~ 

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