Cannabis Headline News is heard at the top of every hour on RadicalRuss Radio and Friday’s news is contained within the free The Russ Belville Show live podcast. For daily downloads of Cannabis Headline news podcast to your device every morning, subscribe by becoming a Patron of RadicalRuss Radio.
Arkansas Gov. Blames Feds For Legalization’s Success
Speaking with the Washington Post, former head of the Drug Enforcement Administration under George W. Bush and current Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson blamed a lack of federal prosecution for the success of marijuana legalization in the states.
President Obama’s administration famously issued the so-called Cole and Ogden memos, which directed federal authorities to ignore state-legal marijuana operations. While President Trump’s first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, rescinded that guidance, there has been no escalation of federal enforcement against state-legal marijuana operations under his one term, either.
Virginians Debate Wisdom of Legalization
Virginia’s 10News reports that while the commonwealth is proceeding toward legalization of marijuana, not all Virginia lawmakers are sold on the idea.
That’s Virginia Assembly Delegate Wendell Walker, speaking about the support Gov. Ralph Northam has expressed for legalization.
Walker supported medical marijuana, but is opposed to legalization, citing the long-debunked gateway drug theory.
Jenn-Michelle Pedini, executive director of Virginia NORML, pushed back.
Madison, Wisc., Decriminalizes Marijuana, Paraphernalia Possession
Tokers in Madison, Wisconsin, can breathe easier as the city’s Common Council on Tuesday decriminalized the personal possession of marijuana.
Channel3000 reports that under new ordinances passed Tuesday night, people 18 and older will be allowed to use or possess up to 28 grams of cannabis on public and private property, as long as they have the permission of the property owner, landlord or tenant. Possessing paraphernalia also will not be punished.
Fines for violating the ordinance by having more than 28 grams of cannabis or using it without a building owner’s permission are also being reduced down to $1.
The decriminalization vote was unanimous.
South Dakota Indian Tribes May Be First to Open Marijuana Dispensaries
Brendan Johnson, a former US Attorney and the sponsor of South Dakota’s successful legalization amendment says that Native American tribes in the state will likely be the first to begin operations under the new law.
Newly-elected Rep. Will Mortenson explained that there is still much to do legislatively before South Dakotans get get into the marijuana business.
But Native American tribes are sovereign nations that could very well implement their own marijuana regulations before the state legislature acts.
Marijuana Banking Could Get Hearing in Republican Senate
While it remains to be seen if Democrats win two Georgia runoff elections to take control of the US Senate, the Republican expected to become the new chair of the Banking Committee believes the SAFE Banking Act could be heard under Republican control.
Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania said, “I am open to working with my colleagues on how we could enable businesses that are operating legally in their respective states to be able to have ordinary banking services.”