Paying Off Congress to Legalize Cannabis

By David Jenison on February 6, 2018

The way to a man's heart is through his stomach, unless that man is a politician, in which case it's through his wallet. That's the bet cannabis-business owners seem to be making to secure their future, at least according to a new USA Today survey

"Hundreds of thousands of dollars [are] flowing from the cannabis industry into campaign finance accounts of both lawmakers and political action committees, with emphasis this year on Congressional Republicans," wrote the national paper. "Marijuana business owners are increasingly pouring their profits into lobbying lawmakers as they face a federal crackdown from the Trump administration."

On the federal level, political contributions associated with recreational cannabis heavily favored Democrats, but the cash flow has recently shifted in favor of Republicans, per OpenSecrets. Whereas Democrats had a 50-percentage advantage in the previous election cycle, the site suggests the Republican cash-haul advantage is now more than fourfold. (Buying off Christian family values doesn't come cheap.)

The Center for Responsive Politics, which analyzed contributions on behalf of the paper, confirmed the shift. In connection with this lobbying shift, more Republicans are willing to frame legalization within a state's rights argument. If this helps neuter Jeff Sessions and hasten the end of prohibition, more power—or should we say cash—to them. 

Cannabis Prohibition: Founded 112 Years Ago Today

7 Prohibitionist Politicians We Need to Kick to the Curb This November

5 Controversial Conservatives Who Support Legalization

Georgia Has Cannabis on Its Mind

Tom Herck: From Crucifying Cows to Appreciating Trump

Study: Prohibition Is Driven by Morality, Not Risk

The Best Year Ever for Lit Music

This Is What Actually Makes America Great

New Study Trolls Dems for Being Cannabis Cowards

Most Lit Cannabis Song Each Year in the 1930s

Celebrate National Beer Day with These Infused Brews

Most Lit Cannabis Song Each Year in the 1940s

The 1950s: The Lost Decade for Cannabis-Themed Music

More Studies Claim Cannabis Reduces Opioid Use

FDA Declares Kratom an Opioid