New Gallup Poll Finds 66% of U.S. Adults Support Legalizing Marijuana, Record High

new Gallup poll released Monday has found that support for legalizing marijuana in the U.S. has reached a record high of 66%, with just 32% opposed.

The poll found majority support spans the political spectrum, with majorities of Democrats, Republicans, and independents in favor. Support among Republicans grew to 53%, up from 51% last year, with opposition dropping to just 45%. Approximately two out of three voters support legalization in each of the four major geographic regions of the country.

The poll results come as voters in two states, Michigan and North Dakota, are considering ballot initiatives to legalize and regulate marijuana for adult use. Nine U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and one U.S. territory, the Northern Mariana Islands, have enacted laws making marijuana legal for adults 21 and older. Eight of those states and the Northern Marianas have also established systems for regulating commercial cultivation and sales.

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Colorado Sets Marijuana Sales Record With Over $140 Million Sold in August

There was over $140 million worth of marijuana and marijuana products sold legally in Colorado in August, setting a new monthly record.

In total there was $141,322,108 in marijuana and marijuana products purchased legally in Colorado in August, according to the state’s Department of Revenue. This bests the previous record set the monthly prior ($138.8 million).

Of the $141 million in marijuana sold in August, $28.3 million came from medical marijuana sales, with recreational marijuana sales falling  barely short of $113 million. These sales helped Colorado garner over $20 million in tax revenue for the month of August.

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Study Finds Consumers of CBD-Rich Cannabis Extracts “Generally Tested Negative for THC in Hair”

According to a new study being published in the journal Forensic Science International, and epublished ahead of print by the National Institute of Health, even after repeated consumption of CBD-rich cannabis extracts consumers “generally tested negative for THC in hair”.

Consume CBD extracts? You probably won’t fail a hair test, according to a new study,

“Medical cannabis is becoming increasingly popular for many different ailments and improvement of general well-being”, begins the study’s abstract. “Particularly CBD-rich extracts are easily available via online pharmacies, health stores or directly from producers. However, almost all of the extracts contain small amounts of THC. In our study, we investigated THC, CBN and CBD in hair samples from regular CBD rich cannabis users. ”

The goals of the study “were to determine levels of the cannabinoids in hair and to evaluate a possible correlation between regular CBD intake and CBD levels in hair.” All participants consumed cannabis extracts from the same producer, which “contained CBD at different concentrations and small amounts of THC with a CBD/THC concentration ratio of 30”.

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WA Liquor and Cannabis Board Puts Hold on Edibles Ban, Seeks Public Comment

Just a week after announcing a ban on certain marijuana-infused products, the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board says it’s placing a hold on the ban to give marijuana industry groups time to formulate and present alternative rules.

Marijuana gummy bears (photo: PotValet.com).

In addition, the board has opened up a 30 day public comment period seeking input on the proposed ban, which would effect products deemed to be enticing to children, such as marijuana gummy bears.

In announcing the ban, the board said it would require all edibles producers to resubmit their products for review and approval, and in an online presentation, the agency advised that “all production” of hard candies, tarts, fruit chews, jellies, colorful chocolates and gummy-type products should be stopped as they won’t meet the new criteria.

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Canada’s Marijuana Legalization Law Takes Effect on Wednesday

 Marijuana possession and use will officially become legal for those 18+ in Canada on Wednesday, with regulated adult sales set to begin in several provinces around the country.

Canada’s parliament approved Bill C-45, known as the Cannabis Act, in June. It creates an overarching national regulatory framework and enables each province to establish its own system of licensing and regulating marijuana businesses. Adults will be allowed to possess up to 30 grams of marijuana, and all products will be sold in plain packaging with clearly marked labels.

Canada is just the second country and the first G7 nation to legalize marijuana for adults at the national level. The first was Uruguay, where legislation was signed into law in December 2013 and a limited number of pharmacies began selling marijuana to adults in July 2017. Nine U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and one U.S. territory, the Northern Mariana Islands, have enacted laws making marijuana legal for adults 21 and older. Eight of those states and the Northern Marianas have also established systems for regulating commercial cultivation and sales.

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Congressman Says Trump Plans to Back State Marijuana Laws, Unveil Federal Reforms, Following Midterms

Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) says that the Trump Administration has made a “solid commitment” to fix federal marijuana laws in order to respect states’ rights after next month’s election.

In an interview with Fox Business on Thursday, Rohrabacher said that he had been talking with people inside the White House about ending marijuana prohibition, and says he’s been “reassured that the president intends on keeping his campaign promise” to protect state marijuana laws from federal interference.

“I would expect after the election we will sit down and we’ll start hammering out something that is specific and real,” he said. “It could be as early as spring of 2019, but definitely in the next legislative session”.

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New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy Says State May Legalize Marijuana by the End of the Month

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (D) says state lawmakers may vote on marijuana legalization on October 29.

Governor Phil Murphy“We’ve had good exchanges with both the legislative leadership sponsors and, most importantly, the teams in the trenches crafting this,” Murphy said during a recent live Facebook interview in which he was asked about legalizing marijuana . “I think it’s sooner than later.”

Murphy says that based on current discussions and support, having a vote on October 29 “feels about right.” The two things that may potentially delay a vote is a debate on marijuana taxes (Senate President Stephen Sweeney says he won’t support anything higher than 12%, while some have argued for as high as 25%), and disagreement about which regulatory body should oversee the legal marijuana industry.

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FDA Seeking Public Comment on the Potential Rescheduling of Marijuana

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is currently seeking public comment regarding the potential rescheduling of marijuana and 16 other substances.

“The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is requesting interested persons to submit comments concerning abuse potential, actual abuse, medical usefulness, trafficking, and impact of scheduling changes on availability for medical use of” cannabis and 16 other substances, says Leslie Kux, FDA’s Associate Commissioner for Policy, in a Federal Register posting.

“These comments will be considered in preparing a response from the United States to the World Health Organization (WHO) regarding the abuse liability and diversion of these drugs. WHO will use this information to consider whether to recommend that certain international restrictions be placed on these drugs.”

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Pennsylvania Committee Passes Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

Legislation that would decriminalize an individual’s first two instances of personal marijuana possession has been passed by a key House committee in Pennsylvania.

House Bill 928 would reduce the penalty for possessing marijuana for the first and second  time from a misdemeanor to a fine of $300 with no possibility of jail time (given the possession was for personal use). If someone is caught possessing marijuana for a third time, they could still face a misdemeanor charge.

The measure, filed by State Representative Barry Jozwiak (R) with 30 bipartisan cosponsors, was passed Tuesday by the House Judiciary Committee by a vote of 14 to 9. The legislation now moves towards a vote by the full House of Representatives, where passage would send it to the Senate.

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National Survey Finds 62% of Americans Support Legalizing Marijuana

Survey results released Monday by the Pew Research Center show a strong majority of American adults support legalizing marijuana.

The national survey of 1,754 U.S. adults found 62% think marijuana should be made legal, while only about one-third of Americans (34%) think it should remain illegal.

“A growing majority of Americans are ready to end the failed policy of marijuana prohibition and move on”,  says Steve Hawkins, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project. “They see states regulating marijuana for medical and adult use, and they recognize it is a much more effective approach. Laws that treat cannabis consumers like criminals and disproportionately impact communities of color are steadily losing popularity across the U.S.”

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