What Does a Trump Presidency Mean for Cannabis? Our Best Guess.

Photo via Flickr user Gage Skidmore

By Joan Eberhardt

What does a Trump presidency mean for cannabis? Our best guess.

Under a Donald Trump presidency the future of cannabis remains uncertain.

Trump himself has held more or less every opinion under the sun on the topic of legal cannabis (and most other topics) but as to what is likely to happen when he takes office next January, the best we can do is speculate.

Voters in 8 states approved cannabis laws on the same day that voters sent Trump to the White House. The Marijuana Policy Project hopes that Trump will listen to what voters say when they overwhelmingly approve these measures to create reasonable cannabis legislation, and they are hopeful “the current federal policy of not targeting people and businesses in compliance with state marijuana laws will continue in the next administration.” But as to whether those hopes will become a reality, we have to look at who he is bringing with him to Pennsylvania Avenue.

Sen. Jeff Sessions has been picked for the Attorney General position. Sessions is a vocal opponent of cannabis and legalization and has been for some time. At a Senate hearing last April he said “we need grown-ups in charge in Washington to say marijuana is not the kind of thing that ought to be legalized, it ought not to be minimized, that it’s in fact a very real danger.” He then went on to blame President Obama’s lax attitude is what has allowed states to legalize cannabis for recreational or medicinal use in past years.
Sessions at the helm of the justice department could mean a serious crackdown on cannabis and cannabis-related businesses. While certain states have legalized the substance, it remains federally illegal which leaves the door open for legal crackdowns. Sessions’ opponents have called him a Drug War Dinosaur, and he in turn, has praised Nancy Reagan’s “Just Say No” campaign. He has, however, long been a vocal advocate for state’s rights.Sessions was not confirmed by the Senate previously for a federal judge position that President Ronald Reagan had appointed him for because, even way by 1986 standards, he was deemed too racist. Sessions once joked that the Ku Klux Klan was okay until he learned they smoke marijuana.

Advocates for cannabis are asking Trump to keep his promises to allow states to decide their own cannabis laws. But some people are worried that his actions could lead to a legal industry that is whiter, and more hostile to minorities who wish to work in the legal cannabis industry.

Quick Puffs

One last puff

I’m tired, you’re tired, your mom is probably tired.



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