The Cannabis Lobby Is Upping Its Presence In Washington DC
It’s shaping up to be another big year for cannabis, as politicians and policymakers move to destigmatize, decriminalize, and — in some cases — legalize the drug nationwide. In New York, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently presented his plan to legalize recreational cannabis throughout the state. Democrat Tim Walz, the newly elected governor of Minnesota, wants his state to be the next to legalize. And in Rhode Island, Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo has conceded that it’s time for her state to move toward legalization, too.
All of that might explain why the Cannabis Trade Federation (CTF) has hired 15 lobbyists to take on its robust policy initiatives for the year ahead. According to The Hill, the lobbyists are charged with advancing the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act, a bipartisan bill written by Sens. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), as well as Reps. David Joyce (R-Ohio) and Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.).
Most notably, the bill would amend the Controlled Substances Act, essentially permitting any business in compliance with state cannabis laws to exist and operate without having to worry about the feds knocking on their door.
Former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions was an especially vocal