SAM’s News

New Banking Bill in Congress Is a Backdoor Marijuana Legalization Effort

Recreational marijuana is currently legal or decriminalized in 23 states plus D.C., but remains illegal on the federal level. Federal laws against marijuana are generally not enforced against users, but regulations against drug trafficking and money laundering mean marijuana operations cannot use banks or claim tax deductions in the same way regular businesses do.  The […]

Indiana legislative committee weighs cannabis legalization but fails to make recommendations

An interim study committee heard roughly six hours of testimony on Wednesday “We’re not talking about flower and marijuana joints anymore of the 70s. These new products we’re talking about — cannabis-infused with pink lemonade gummies, candies, cookies, ice cream sodas — these are legally being sold in the state-regulated markets,” said Luke Niforatos, executive vice […]

Drug Use, Legalization and Our City Streets

The problems that feed homelessness and disorder. Andy Kessler’s “Three Ideas to End Tent Cities” (Inside View, Oct. 30) raises worthy points to address San Francisco’s and the nation’s ballooning homeless crisis. The column would benefit, however, from acknowledging that addiction and the legalization of drugs is a significant contributor to homelessness. Read the entire […]

Legalizing marijuana in Ohio: Debate of impact on criminal justice reform

The hot-button issue of marijuana legalization is front and center in Ohio again and voters will ultimately decide whether or not it happens on Nov. 7. “Legalizing marijuana has nothing to do with social justice,” Smart Approaches to Marijuana Executive VP Luke Niforatos said. “We don’t think anyone who made a poor decision when they were 14 […]

Luke Niforatos in The Spectator: Americans are watching legal weed’s promise go up in smoke

More than a decade after Colorado became the first state to legalize marijuana in 2012, it is apparent that legalization has mostly failed based on the very criteria put forth by its champions “When Colorado became the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use in 2014, expectations were as high as its users. For […]

Wall Street Journal: The Cannabis That People Are Using For Anxiety is Probably Making It Worse

Lots of people with anxiety are counting on cannabis’s ability to treat their symptoms. There’s a problem: The science shows that it probably doesn’t help, and it may make those symptoms worse. Cannabis companies have promoted their products as helpful for anxiety, making for a potentially lucrative market. Anxious consumers have turned to weed and edibles for […]

SAM in Politico: Weed wins galvanize Capitol Hill’s anti-cannabis clubSAM in Politico:

Most of the cohesion in the anti-weed movement — said Luke Niforatos, executive vice president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, the leading anti-legalization advocacy group — comes from advocates and lobbying groups, not lawmakers’ offices themselves. He said SAM worked with Lankford on the letter and regularly connects offices they know are opposed to marijuana […]

Former Congressman Kennedy: NCAA Decision to Allow Marijuana Drug Use Would Do Irreconcilable Harm to Student-Athletes, Athletic Competition

Former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy, Medical Professionals, Leading Scientists Urge NCAA President Charlie Baker To Recognize Scientific and Medical Data Detailing the Risks Associated with Today’s THC Drugs As Governor of Massachusetts, Baker Recognized the Dangers of THC Drug Use (WASHINGTON, DC) – Former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy, Honorary Chair of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), today […]

Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City Finds Economic Costs of THC Drug Legalization Outweigh Gains

“Substance Use Disorders, Chronic Homelessness, and Arrests increased by 17%, 35% and 13% respectively.” (WASHINGTON, DC) – Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) President Dr. Kevin Sabet, a former White House drug policy advisor to Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama, released the following statement today in response to a new research paper released by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas […]

Sabet in Newsweek: Promoting Healthy Living Can’t Stop at Cigarettes

“If the government’s new cigarette regulations were about addressing public health concerns, then they’ve only taken on part of the battle. You can’t promote healthy living while ignoring the harms of drugs like opioids, meth, and cannabis,” Sabet wrote. Read the entire article HERE.

Bipartisan Group of White House and DEA Heads Urge Biden Administration to Reject Rescheduling of Marijuana

Bipartisan Group of former DEA Administrators & ONDCP Directors Cite Public Health, Lack of Medical Benefits, and Industry Practices Among Concerns (WASHINGTON, DC) – A bipartisan group of 11 former DEA Administrators and ONDCP Directors, who served in every administration from Presidents Nixon to Obama, has penned a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland […]

Marijuana legalization one of the biggest issues on Ohio’s ballot

“Today’s marijuana is nothing like it was 30 years ago,” said Luke Niforatos, the executive vice president of Safe Approaches to Marijuana. “It’s more potent than ever before. The moment you let industries selling an addictive drug become legal, they will find ways to target and addict younger demographics. That’s how they can stay afloat […]

Senator Dianne Feinstein Remembered As A Champion for Responsible Drug Policy

Late Senator Opposed Legalization, Championed Legislation to Protect Young People From Predatory Marijuana Marketing (WASHINGTON, DC) – Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) President Dr. Kevin Sabet, a former three-time White House drug policy advisor released the following statement today following the announcement of the passing of Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA): “For a Californian like me working on drug […]

More Bad News for Pot Users: New Study Connects Marijuana Use to Strokes, Heart Attacks, and Cardiovascular Episodes

Study the Latest Example of Serious Health Impacts Pot Industry Refuses to Acknowledge  Adults with Cannabis Use Disorder Have 60% Higher Risk for First Heart Attack, Stroke, or Other Major Cardiovascular Event  (WASHINGTON, DC) – Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) President Dr. Kevin Sabet, a former Obama White House drug policy advisor, released the following statement in response to […]

Legalizing marijuana in Ohio: Debate over health impact

“Today’s marijuana is nothing like it was 30 years ago,” said Luke Niforatos, the executive vice president of Safe Approaches to Marijuana. “It’s more potent than ever before. The moment you let industries selling an addictive drug become legal, they will find ways to target and addict younger demographics. That’s how they can stay afloat […]

Study: No link between PNW overdose deaths and drug laws

The study, published Wednesday in JAMA Psychiatry, looked at drug overdose rates after Oregon decriminalized drug possession in February 2021 and after Washington stopped treating low-level drug crimes as felonies that same year. Kevin Sabet, head of the Foundation for Drug Policy Solutions, told Axios Portland’s Emily Harris the new study is “limited” because it went through only March 2022, while […]

Cannabis stocks rise as Senate committee OKs cannabis banking bill

“Members of the committee heard first-hand from those whose lives have been devastated by today’s high-potency THC drug products engineered to increase usage rates, yet they don’t seem to care,” Sabet said in a post on the social-media platform X. Read the entire article here.

Washington Examiner: Second Republican debate: GOP candidates at the debate should be asked about their drug policies 

“The nation is in the midst of an addiction epidemic, and Washington is contemplating making it easier to put more drugs in our communities and empowering businesses that prey on young people, minorities, and low-income communities,” said Kevin Sabet. Read the entire article here.

SAM in the National Narcotics Officers Association’s “The Coalition”

“Of concern, the SAFE Banking Act could inadvertently allow cartels to launder their ill-gotten gains––from all illegal activities––through the marijuana industry and into our federal banking system. Eric Brown, the President of the National Narcotics Officers’ Associations’ Coalition, raised a similar concern, arguing “Opening U.S. financial services to illicit activities will only make a bad situation worse by […]

Head of the NRSC Works Overtime to Help Schumer Advance SAFER Banking Act Out Of Banking Committee

Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and NRSC Chairman Steve Daines (R-MT) Know the Risks to Society, but Pushed to Advance Dangerous Bill Anyway (WASHINGTON, DC) – Following the Senate Banking Committee’s vote to advance the “Addiction Banking Act” to the full Senate, Smart Approaches to Marijuana Action (SAM Action) President Dr. Kevin Sabet, a former three-time White House […]

Dr. Kevin Sabet in Singapore news:

Scholar: Drug detoxification treatment must be combined with punishment  After Portugal, Oregon and British Columbia implemented drug decriminalization policies, the number of drug-related deaths increased instead of decreasing. Scholars interviewed believe that this shows that decriminalization is not enough to solve the problem of drug addiction.   Dr. Kevin Sabet, chairman of the non-profit organization Foundation […]

Luke Niforatos in Colorado Sun: An audit of the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division discovers significant lapses of oversight

“At the end of July, Colorado’s Marijuana Enforcement Division released its annual performance audit. This division, as specified in the report, is responsible for ‘regulating Colorado’s retail marijuana industry,’ ‘inspecting marijuana stores,’ ‘investigating alleged violations of marijuana laws and rules,’ and ‘pursuing enforcement actions.’ Yet, key findings of the report revealed that though they are charged […]

Senate plans to advance cannabis banking bill by the end of month

Smart Approaches to Marijuana Action, an organization against legalizing marijuana, is attempting to urge lawmakers who haven’t taken a position on the bill to oppose it. The group sent a letter to Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), who has yet to formally endorse the legislation. Read the entire article here.

Republicans soften on federal marijuana reform in a shift that could make it a reality

A bill that would let legal marijuana businesses get access to major financial and banking institutions is likely to have the votes to pass the Senate. Smart Approaches to Marijuana Action, a political organization opposed to marijuana legalization, urged Tuberville to oppose the legislation in a recent letter. “Marijuana is particularly dangerous for young people, a […]