Recreational cannabis plants inside of a Bellingham, Washington grow facility.

Rory Savatgy

Federal House Bill Would Reschedule Cannabis, Re-Define Marijuana to Exclude CBD

Republican Virginia Rep. Griffith H. Morgan has introduced legislation to reschedule cannabis under the federal Controlled Substances Act, and exclude cannabidiol from the definition of marijuana.

According to the bill text, CBD would be defined exclusively as cannabis not containing more than 0.3 percent THC “on a dry weight basis.” The proposal does not include any indication or direct order pertaining to how cannabis would be rescheduled; instead it leaves that responsibility to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, who would issue a recommendation to the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Agency.

President Donald Trump has tabbed Georgia Republican Rep. Tom Price as his HHS secretary – a strong medical cannabis opponent who voted six times against amendments preventing Justice Department interference from state-approved medical cannabis laws, and three times against allowing Veterans Affairs doctors to recommend the drug, according to a New York Times report.

If Price were confirmed for the post, he would likely be the HHS Secretary if the law were to pass – which requires the recommendation to the DEA no later than180 days after the law’s enactment.

In a blog post, NORML said that while rescheduling cannabis “will not end federal prohibition” it would “bring an end to the federal government’s longstanding intellectual dishonesty that marijuana ‘lacks accepted medical use.’

“It would also likely permit banks and other financial institutions to work with state-compliant marijuana-related businesses, and permit employers in the cannabis industry to take tax deductions similar to those enjoyed by other businesses,” the post reads. “Rescheduling would also likely bring some level of relief to federal employees subject to random workplace drug testing for off-the-job cannabis consumption.”

The bill was referred to both the House Judiciary, and Energy and Commerce committees.

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