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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW
During a debate on an amendment to protect state marijuana laws from federal interference, U.S. House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX) said, "Marijuana is an addictive product, and the merchants of addiction make it that way. They make it for addiction."

The Kentucky Senate's Republican caucus chair introduced a bill to legalize marijuana. Meanwhile, Gov. Matt Bevin (R) says he's open to medical cannabis but not recreational legalization.
Sponsor Message
In the fight for legalization, every win is a step forward. California amplified the cannabis conversation with the approval of Proposition 215 in 1996 to legalize medical marijuana. Since then, 28 states have joined the cause. And eight states and the District of Columbia passed legislation to legalize adult use for individuals over the age of 21. This month, California takes its rightful place among the most engaged legalization activist communities in the nation with the implementation of Proposition 64.

While we still have many battles to fight, this victory is a huge step forward in normalizing cannabis and removing the negative stigma caused by decades of misinformation.
/ FEDERAL
U.S. Veterans Affairs Sec. David Shulkin clarified that his department can do research on medical cannabis but faces restrictions in doing so. (1:56:50 into the video.)
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is reportedly blocking sentencing reform from becoming part of the White House's agenda.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) and 18 cosponsors  introduced a bill to remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and withhold funding from states with racial disparities in cannabis enforcement. She, along with Congressman Ro Khanna (D-CA) and U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), discussed the bill on Facebook Live.

Congressman Ted Lieu (D-CA) and three cosponsors introduced a bill to restrict civil asset forfeiture funds from being used for the Drug Enforcement Administration's Domestic Cannabis Eradication / Suppression Program.
Thirty-one U.S. House members sent a letter urging the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network to maintain existing guidance on the marijuana industry's access to banking services.
Ten Democratic U.S. senators sent a letter to President Trump criticizing the fact that he hasn't appointed leaders for the Drug Enforcement Administration or Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Four U.S. House members delivered successive floor speeches condemning federal interference with state marijuana laws.
Earlier in the day, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) delivered a House floor speech criticizing Sessions's anti-marijuana move.
As did Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR).
Connecticut's U.S. attorney said he would "continue to prosecute violations of federal law consistent with priorities established by the Justice Department and our office."
While the Massachusetts U.S. attorney issued a marijuana enforcement statement that concerned many in the industry, people who know him say he is unlikely to crack down.
Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Congressman Jason Lewis (R-MN) spoke about federal intervention in state marijuana policies in a joint appearance on C-SPAN.
Congressman Tim Walz (D-MN) is criticizing the U.S Department of Veterans Affairs for blocking medical cannabis research.
The U.S. Senate comprehensive medical cannabis bill got one new cosponsor, bringing the total to nine.
The U.S. House bill to deschedule marijuana got one new cosponsor, bringing the total to 25.
The U.S. House bill to exempt state-legal marijuana activity from the Controlled Substances Act got one new cosponsor, bringing the total to 40.
The U.S. House bill to allow marijuana businesses to access banks got six new cosponsors, bringing the total to 64.
The U.S. House bill to regulate marijuana like alcohol got one new cosponsor, bringing the total to 23.
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/ STATES
At least half a dozen New Jersey Democratic senators are opposed to marijuana legalization, putting its passage in serious jeopardy.
Illinois Democratic gubernatorial candidates discussed marijuana legalization at a forum.
Ohio Democratic gubernatorial candidate Dennis Kucinich, a former congressman, said he would protect "Ohio's right to dispense medical marijuana" from federal interference.
Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial candidate Matt Flynn said he supports legalizing marijuana and would pardon everyone with low-level cannabis convictions.
A study requested by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) recommended "the use of race- and gender-based measures to remediate discrimination affecting minority- and women-owned businesses in the types of industries relevant to the medical cannabis business."
Colorado's attorney general spoke about her efforts to defend the state's marijuana laws from federal interference.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) discussed his proposal for the state to study legalizing marijuana. Separately, an assemblymember introduced a bill to add opioid use disorder as a medical cannabis qualifying condition.
Rhode Island's marijuana legalization study commission heard from Massachusetts officials.
The Florida Senate Health Committee approved a bill to repeal a requirement that a medical cannabis cultivation license be issued to a member of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association.
West Virginia lawmakers filed legislation to allow the smoking of medical cannabis.
Michigan representatives introduced a resolution calling on U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to respect the state's "constitutionally-protected right to regulate medical marihuana at the state level, and if he fails to do so, we call upon the President of the United States to replace him with a successor who will more faithfully fulfill this constitutional duty."
A Pennsylvania senator is introducing a resolution calling for marijuana to be rescheduled. Separately, regulators issued guidance on medical cannabis testing.
California regulators released a series of videos to help marijuana businesses learn about their tax responsibilities.
Nevada Sen. Tick Segerblom (D) disclosed that he sits on the board of a Canadian marijuana company.
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/ INTERNATIONAL
The National Assembly for Wales voted to pressure the UK government to allow medical cannabis.
/ ADVOCACY
A poll funded by prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana found that 49% of US. voters support legalization, another 29% support medical cannabis, 5% back decriminalization and 16% support keeping current policy as-is.
/ SCIENCE & HEALTH
A study determined that "cannabis use is associated with reduced incidence of liver disease in alcoholics."
A study concluded that "new medical cannabis legislation might reduce the need for opioid analgesics for pain management, which could help to address adverse events associated with opioid analgesic use."
A study found that "while individuals who use cannabis or cigarettes during adolescence have an increased risk of subsequent psychotic experiences, epidemiological evidence is substantively more robust for cannabis use than it is for tobacco use."
/ BUSINESS
Pennsylvania's first medical cannabis dispensary opened.
ACTION ALERT: Tell Congress To Respect State Marijuana Laws
/ CULTURE
Cypress Hill's DJ Muggs spoke about his thoughts on marijuana legalization.
MMA fighter Cynthia Calvillo tested positive for marijuana metabolites.
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