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How The Cannabis Landscape Could Change Post Election

After the mid-term elections, the nation may look even more cannabis-friendly

Voters in seven states will weigh in on 36 different cannabis proposals Tuesday, everything from the legalization of medical and recreational use to the definition of hemp to the tax on cannabis sales. All of these initiatives have the potential to change how cannabis is produced, sold and used. But there’s more than just those cannabis-specific questions that could change the marijuana landscape after the midterms. Newly elected officials will have the power to set or change state policies. Here’s a look at how election results could impact the industry.

 

Prohibition easing: In January, Vermont became the first state to pass legalization through its legislature (instead of ballot initiative). Although he vetoed the Democratic controlled legislature’s first bill, Vermont’s Republican governor reluctantly signed a second, veto-proof attempt. More and more Democrats — including those running for Senate, governor, state legislature and city council — are including cannabis legalization in their pitch to voters at both the state and federal levels. That means the more of those candidates that get elected, the better the chance that legalization legislation follows. In state legislatures today, Republicans control 65 legislative chambers, compared to 31 for the Democrats. The nonpartisan Governing magazine estimates 17 state legislatures could flip on Tuesday, including 11 that currently are held by Republicans. Flipping those bodies probably will make it easier to pass legislation further opening those states to the growing cannabis industry.

 

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