Marijuana News Roundup: Support for California Legalization Falling?

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Leading Legalization Opponent to Sell Medicine That Competes Directly with Marijuana

Insys Therapeutics, the Arizona-based pharmaceutical company that recently became the biggest financial supporter of the campaign against marijuana legalization in that state, makes an oral fentanyl spray that might compete with cannabis as a painkiller. But as Lee Fang notes at The Intercept, Insys has another, more direct financial interest in defeating marijuana legalization: It is about to introduce an oral spray to deliver dronabinol, a synthetic version of THC, marijuana’s main active ingredient, as a treatment for AIDS wasting syndrome and the nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy.

In a 2007 disclosure statement that Insys filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the company noted the competitive threat posed by marijuana legalization:

Legalization of marijuana or non-synthetic cannabinoids in the United States could significantly limit the commercial success of any dronabinol product candidate.…If marijuana or non-synthetic cannabinoids were legalized in the United States, the market for dronabinol product sales would likely be significantly reduced and our ability to generate revenue and our business prospects would be materially adversely affected.

Read more at Reason.com.

Colorado Pot Shops Post Record-Breaking Sales Figures Topping $122 Million in July 2016

Colorado’s monthly marijuana sales notched an all-time high in July 2016 as shops sold nearly $122.7 million of medical and recreational cannabis — a 27 percent increase from July 2015, according to state revenue data released Monday.

The monthly haul surpasses the previous record notched this past April — a month that includes the annual 4/20 marijuana holiday — when $117.4 million of flower, edibles and concentrates were sold. Medical sales accounted for $40.8 million and recreational sales accounted for roughly $76.6 million of April’s total.

In July, recreational sales shot to $83.8 million, according to the Colorado Department of Revenue report.

The record revenue is most likely attributable to a summertime sales spike, said Adam Orens, a managing director of Denver-based BBC Research & Consulting and founding partner of the Marijuana Policy Group.

Read more at The Cannabist.

Why Medical Marijuana Patients Can’t Buy Guns

An appeals court ruled last week that a federal law prohibiting medical marijuana cardholders from purchasing guns does not violate their Second Amendment rights, because marijuana has been linked to “irrational or unpredictable behavior.”

The ruling came in the case of a Nevada woman who attempted to purchase a handgun in 2011, but was denied when the gun store owner recognized her as a medical marijuana cardholder, according to court documents. S. Rowan Wilson maintained that she didn’t actually use marijuana, but obtained a card to make a political statement in support of liberalizing marijuana law.

Federal law prohibits gun purchases by an “unlawful user and/or an addict of any controlled substance.” In 2011, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms clarified in a letter that the law applies to marijuana users “regardless of whether [their] State has passed legislation authorizing marijuana use for medicinal purposes.” Though a growing number of states are legalizing it for medical or recreational use, marijuana remains illegal for any purpose under federal law, which considers the drug to have a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use.

Read more at The Washington Post.

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