ON THE SPEAKEASY BLOG

BREAKING: Another Senate Pro-Medical Marijuana Vote

The Senate Appropriations Committee just voted to extend the ban on DOJ spending funds to interfere with state medical marijuana laws. 5 comments

New York Medical Marijuana Program Brings in $3 Million from Application Process

New York has closed it application process for those wishing to get one of the state's 5 permits to open a medical cannabis dispensary. Each permit would entitle the holder to open four dipsnsaries. In total, 20 dispensaries would be opened in a state with a population of over 19 million people. 1 comment

URGENT: Congressional Vote on Permitting State Marijuana Laws!

Last year's legislation protecting state medical marijuana laws from federal interference is expiring soon. A vote coming as soon as tonight could extend it, while expanding it to include state legalization laws too. 4 comments

CT Lawmakers Push to Add Children and Hospital Patients to Medical Marijuana Program

Both houses of the Conneticut legislature are preparing their final votes on a bill that would add children and hospital patients to the state's medical marijuana program. The bill would restrict children from smoking or vaping their medical marijuana. 3 comments

Three Marijuana Reform Bills Filed in Louisiana

Three seperate marijuana reform bills have been filed in the Louisiana State Capitol. They include a restrictive medical marijuana bill supported by law enforcement, and two seperate efforts to reform the state's harsh sentencing laws. 2 comments

Write and Call Congress TODAY for Vets' Access to Medical Marijuana!

An important amendment is coming up for a vote in the House of Representatives late this afternoon or early evening. Our two web forms will help you to both email and call your member of Congress to support it. 6 comments

What Does Congress's Medical Marijuana Legislation Actually Mean?

The controversial "CRomnibus" bill passed by the House and Senate includes language barring the Dept. of Justice from using taxpayer funds to interfere with state medical marijuana laws. 5 comments

Washington Sheriff Tells Oregon Voters: Legalization Is Already Working

King County Sheriff John Urquhart has recorded a message letting Oregon voters know that legalization in Washington State has seen wasteful arrests decrease, DUIs decrease, taxes going to schools and police, and drug prevention programs getting funding. 7 comments

DC Marijuana Initiative Qualifies for Ballot

More info later today, see @DCMJ2014 in the meanwhile...

2 comments

Summer Reading Assignment for Congress

Dean Becker of the Drug Truth Network is in Washington today to give copies of his book, "To End the War on Drugs," to every member of the House and Senate. 2 comments

House Votes to Let Banks Take Deposits from Marijuana Businesses

In a historic vote this afternoon, the US House has approved an amendment to the Treasury Department appropriations bill barring the agency from spending any money to punish financial institutions that provide services to marijuana businesses where it is legal. 2 comments

One of the Worst Ideas to Come Out of the War on Drugs: Sentencing Enhancement Zones

A video from the Prison Policy Initiative on what is indeed one of the worst ideas to come out of the war on drugs. 5 comments

House Committee Votes to Block DC Decrim

The GOP-dominated House Appropriations Committee stuck a thumb in the eye of democratic governance in the nations capital this morning. The committee voted to prevent the District of Columbia from implementing marijuana decriminalization approved by the District government. 5 comments

Senate Could Vote to Cut DEA Funds as Soon as Tonight

In a historic vote late last month, the House moved to cut funding for the DEA to go after medical marijuana in states where it is legal. Now, the Senate is preparing to vote on a similar measure. 17 comments

DEA Leaning On Massachusetts Docs with Dispensaries Ties

The Boston Globe is reporting today that the DEA has been visiting Massachusetts doctors involved with yet-to-open medical marijuana dispensaries and giving them an ultimatum: Cut your ties with the dispensary or lose your DEA-issued license to prescribe drugs. And it's working. 11 comments

There Were Several Drug Policy Amendments to the CJS Bill

Reformers have mostly been talking about the 13 comments

House Passes Historic Medical Marijuana Amendment

Late Thursday night, the House of Representatives told the DEA to butt out of medical marijuana states by approving a budget amendment barring the use of taxpayer funds to do so. 12 comments

Kentucky Gets its Hemp Seed as DEA Backs Off

It's a done deal. A UPS truck delivered more than 250 pounds of hemp seed to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture this afternoon. It took a lawsuit and a lot of political pressure on DEA head Michele Leonhart, but the agency has backed away from its initial refusal to allow the seeds to be imported. 3 comments

The Largest Marijuana March Ever? 150,000 Protest in Buenos Aires!

Good Golly, Miss Mary Jane! I've been watching marijuana legalization marches for a long time and I've never seen a crowd like this. 12 comments

Uruguay's Mujica is the Grumpy Old Man of Global Marijuana Legalization

Uruguay formally rolls out its marijuana legalization rules next week, but President Mujica shows he's no Captain Cannabis. 5 comments

Big News from the Administration About Commutations

The Obama administration may issue hundreds or even thousands of sentence commutations in drug cases, 3 comments

It's 4/20 in Denver!

Denver is pot city this weekend, with the High Times Cannabis Cup, the 4/20 rally downtown, and dozens of related musical and cultural events. 2 comments

I'm Denver Bound, So No Chronicle AM for Friday

I'm driving from eastern South Dakota to Denver Friday in preparation for the 4/20 weekend there. 0 comments

Maryland Becomes 18th Decrim State, 21st Medical Marijuana State

With Gov. Martin O'Malley's signature today on two bills passed by the legislature, Maryland decriminalized marijuana possession and becomes a full-fledged medical marijuana state. 2 comments

Medical Marijuana Expansion, Decriminalization Pass in Maryland

It was a banner day in Annapolis Monday, where legislators, working against an end-of-session deadline, managed to pass both marijuan decriminalization and medical marijuana expansion bills. 4 comments

Obama Needs to Slap Down His Rogue DEA Chief

DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart told a congressional committee today her agency is "fighting back" against Justice Department policies tolerating marijuana in states where it is legal. The president needs to remind her who is the boss. 11 comments

Maryland Senate Okays Marijuana Decriminalization

The Maryland Senate today overwhelmingly approved a marijuana decriminalization bill with bipartisan support. It now heads to the House of Delegates. 8 comments

Say What? UNODC Panel Says Criminalizing Drug Use "Not Beneficial"

Yep, you read that right. The global anti-drug bureaucracy doesn't think it's a good idea to criminalize drug use. 12 comments

A Thousand March for "El Chapo" in Culiacan

More than a thousand people marched through the streets of Culiacan, the capital of Sinaloa state, Wednesday in support of arrested Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. 9 comments

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FROM THE CHRONICLE

A Maryland Lawmaker's Paradigm-Shifting Approach to the Heroin and Pain Pill Crisis [FEATURE]

Del. Dan Morchaim (D) has introduced a comprehensive package of bills to decriminalize drug use, allow safe consumption sites and heroin maintenance, and provide for drug treatment on demand on hospital ERs. comments

Chronicle AM: CT Legalization Bill, ND Legalization Init, CA MedMJ Tax Bill, More... (2/11/16)

It's all marijuana news today, with a legalization bill filed in Connecticut, a legalization initiative filed in North Dakota, a medical marijuana tax bill filed in California, and more. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

It's jail and prison guards gone wild this week! Most did their misdeeds for profit, but at least one did hers for love. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

Medical marijuana bills are moving in Florida and Utah, and new bills are popping up as state legislatures get down to business. comments

Chronicle AM: Historic Federal Drug Budget, 2015 CO MJ Sales Nearly $1 Billion, More... (2/10/16)

A marijuana legalizer wins a presidential election primary, Western states take up marijuana issues, the Obama administration balances demand and supply anti-drug spending in a historic first, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: WVA Welfare Drug Test Bill Advances, ME Voters Want Drug Decrim, More... (2/9/16)

Medical marijuana bills get filed not only in Iowa, but also Australia and Greece, a new poll shows enlightened drug policy attitudes among Maine voters, Republican US senators hold competing events for and against sentencing reform legislation, and more. 1 comment

Could Kratom Be a Better Choice for Heroin and Pain Pill Users? [FEATURE]

The stuff eases pain and opiate withdrawals and is almost impossible to overdose on. Banning it seems like a step in the wrong direction. comments

Chronicle AM: RI Legalization Bills, More Philly Dope Cases Thrown Out, More... (2/8/16)

New England is turning into a real marijuana legalization hotspot as Rhode Island is set to become the latest state in the region to try to free the weed, the South Dakota legislature will take up medical marijuana after an initiative failed to make the ballot, Philadelphia's "tainted justice" policing scandals undoes more drug convictions, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Fed Bill Would Allow MJ Ad Mailings, Far-Reaching MD Bills Filed, More... (2/5/16)

Oregon's federal representatives fight to protect marijuana advertising, medical marijuana and CBD bills are moving in the states, a Maryland delegates files bills for drug treatment on demand, supervised injection sites, opiate maintenance (including heroin), and drug decriminalization -- quite a package! -- and more. comments

Will the VA Let Doctors Recommend Medical Marijuana to Veterans? [FEATURE]

A VA policy barring doctors from recommending -- or even discussing -- medical marijuana with their patients expires this weekend. Congresspersons, doctors, and patients are hoping a change for the better is coming. 2 comments

Chronicle AM: MJ Arrests Plummet in NYC & Jamaica, ME May Refelonize Drug Possession, More... (1/4/16)

What a difference a policy change makes! After decrim in Jamaica and actually enforcing decrim in New York City, marijuana arrests plummet in both places, a bill to cut marijuana penalties advances in Kansas, a bill to refelonize hard drug possession is in play in Maine, and more. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

It's pretty quiet on the corrupt cops front this week. Maybe that's a good thing. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

No new qualifying conditions for Illinois, Puerto Rico adopts medical marijuana regulations, a New York state senator files a medical marijuana expansion bill, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: DC Council Backs Away From Pot Club Ban, RI Gov Wants Patient Tax, More... (2/3/16)

The idea of marijuana social clubs in the nation's capital remains alive, Rhode Island patients face the prospect of seeing their plants taxed, there are medical marijuana advances in Australia and Poland, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Obama Wants $1 Billion to Fight Opioids, Legal Pot Sales Hit $5.4 Billion, More... (2/2/16)

A new report finds marijuana is a booming market, California doctors get on board with the AUMA legalization initiative, the White House wants nearly a billion bucks to fight opioid addiction -- with most of it going for "medication-assisted treatment" -- and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Maine Legalization Initiative On Target for Ballot, Narcan in the News, More... (2/1/16)

Maine's legalization initiative looks like it will qualify for the ballot, Tommy Chong endorses Bernie Sanders, a new federal bill would fund needle exchanges, naloxone is in the news, and more. comments

Maine Now Poised to Vote on Marijuana Legalization This November

New England is poised to be a marijuana reform hotbed this year, and it looks like Maine will have a chance to legalize it. comments

Chronicle AM: VT Legalization Bill Advances, Puerto Rico Issues MedMJ Regs, More... (1/29/16)

Pot policy is popping! A legalization bill advances in Vermont, a Maine initiative looks set to qualify for the ballot next week, a Virginia poll has a strong majority for legalization (somebody tell the legislature), and more. comments

Vermont Marijuana Legalization Bill Wins First Committee Vote

Vermont takes a step toward becoming the first state to legalize marijuana through the legislative process. comments

Seven Ways New York's Medical Marijuana Program Falls Short [FEATURE]

New York's long-delayed medical marijuana program finally rolled out this month -- not with a bang, but with a whimper. 2 comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Minnesota deputy steals dope and Christmas toys, an Indiana deputy coroner peddles pills, and a Texas narcotics officer gets nailed trying to rip off drug cartels. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: FL MedMJ Init Qualifies for Ballot, VT Gov Endorses Pot Legalization Bill, More... (1/28/16)

Busy, busy. State legislatures are in full swing, and the bills just keep coming. Meanwhile, Florida's medical marijuana initiative has qualified for the ballot, Vermont's governor endorses legalization, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: DC MJ Club Ban Moving, Fed Lawmakers Want MedMJ Allowed for Vets, More... (1/27/16)

State legislators are getting busy, the DC city council resorts to sneakery to try to kill pot clubs, federal legislators ask the VA to let doctors recommend medical marijuana for veterans, and more. 2 comments

Chronicle AM: Marijuana Decrim Killed in VA, Ireland Ponders Pill Testing for Festivals, More (1/26/16)

Alaska's commercial marijuana regulations advance, so does a Kansas bill lowering pot penalties and a pair of Florida asset forfeiture reform bills, the Irish government ponders pill testing for nightclubs and festivals, a medical marijuana bill is filed in Mexico, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Mexico Legalization Debate Gets Underway, NH Gov Signs Heroin Bills, More... (1/25/16)

New Hampshire's governor signs a package of heroin and prescription opiate bills, a similar package goes to the desk of the Wisconsin governor, Illinois patients seek to add more qualifying conditions, South Dakota's GOP governor rejects a welfare drug testing bill, a key Mexican politician endorses pot legalization, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

A handful of dispensaries open in New York, dispensary applications are now available in Hawaii, it looks like Florida will get another chance to vote for medical marijuana, and more. comments

Why Is the Administration Sending Refugees Back to Narco War Nightmare US Helped Create? [FEATURE]

US policies helped push these people out of Central America. Now US policy is pushing them back in. 1 comment

Dabs, the Latest Pot Trend Police and Media Are Needlessly Freaking Out About [FEATURE]

A potent form of marijuana has arrived on the East Coast, and some media outlets seem to have gotten a contact high. 3 comments

Chronicle AM: Wichita "Decrim" Thrown Out, Argentina Will Shoot Down Drug Planes, More... (1/22/16)

The Kansas Supreme Court throws out Wichita's voter-approved "decrim" ordinance on a technicality, GOP committee chairs quash medical marijuana bills in Indiana, the DEA partnered with a TSA screener in a bid to seize cash from travelers, the Argentines want to shoot down drug planes, and more. comments

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