MAJOR CANNABIS INDUSTRY MILESTONE:
JOHN BOEHNER JOINS BOARD OF ACREAGE HOLDINGS
When the history of the cannabis industry in American is written, two recent political events will be featured as major milestones in the path to legalization and normalization.
Today's announcement in Bloomberg by Former House Speaker John Boehner - a southern Republican, cigarette smoker, and avowed opponent of cannabis legalization for years during his political career - is joining the board of Acreage Holdings, one of the largest cannabis companies in the US, will stand tall in our history (and no doubt shake the anti-cannabis establishment to its core - the dice are falling faster than ever.).
Boehner joins the Acreage board with former Massachusetts Governor William Weld, another Republican (and Vice Presidential candidate on Gary Johnson's Libertarian ticket). Weld - a former Prosecutor - had become a cannabis supporter as Governor in the 1990's, and "has long called for legalization of marijuana and the relaxation of drug laws".
How far has Boehner come? Nine years ago, in his role as Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Boehner was quoted as saying he was “unalterably opposed” to legalization.
In a joint statement, Boehner and Weld stated:
"We need to look no further than our nation's 20 million veterans, 20 percent of whom, according to a 2017 American Legion survey, reportedly use cannabis to self-treat PTSD, chronic pain and other ailments. Yet the VA does not allow its doctors to recommend its usage. There are numerous other patient groups in America whose quality of life has been dramatically improved by the state-sanctioned use of medical cannabis.
While the Tenth Amendment has allowed much to occur at the state level, there are still many negative implications of the Federal policy to schedule cannabis as a Class 1 drug: most notably the lack of research, the ambiguity around financial services and the refusal of the VA to offer it as an alternative to the harmful opioids that are ravishing our communities."
Btw, the other recent turning point in cannabis legalization that will take a place in the history books is the day in July 2017 that Nevada's Republican Governor Brian Sandoval supported the Nevada Tax Commission against the alcohol industry's transparent "failure" to qualify as cannabis distributors - essentially mirroring the Ronald-Reagan-Firing-the-Air-Traffic-Controllers moment in the 1980's.
Image source: John Boehner Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg