Many believe the United States will legalize recreational marijuana at the federal level in a few years. But according to one U.S. cannabis CEO, that year is actually 2019.
Acreage Holdings CEO Kevin Murphy said he believes the United States will legalize marijuana at the federal level by the end of 2019. Murphy said that he believes this will be done through the STATES Act, a bill proposed by Senators Cory Gardner and Elizabeth Warren that would allow states to legalize recreational marijuana without fear of intervention from the federal government.
"I believe 2019 is going to be the year," Murphy said. "I believe that it's going to take place through the STATES Act."
Now, it's not entirely clear if Murphy means that STATES Act will simply allow cannabis companies to act as if it's not illegal at the federal level, or if he believes the bill will be amended to allow full legalization at the federal level. Because currently the STATES Act does not change the actual designation of cannabis as an illegal substance under federal law. It simply prevents the federal government from doing anything to interfere with states who legalize marijuana.
Acreage Holdings has been in the news lately after their Super Bowl commercial was rejected by CBS.
Something tells me if Congress can't even agree to a bill to re-open the government, it may be a stretch to expect a complete reversal on five decades worth of marijuana policy by the end of this year.