Source: Brian Saady, Blacklisted News
The former Speaker of House, John Boehner, and former Massachusetts Governor, Bill Weld, were added to the Board of Advisors for Acreage Holdings, an investment company heavily involved in the legal cannabis industry.
This pair of former conservative leaders will certainly help to bring bipartisan support for the pro-legalization movement. They’re also part of an emerging trend of conservative revolving door lobbyists working on behalf of the legal marijuana industry.
Last September, the former three-term Republican Senator from New York, Al D’Amato, wrote an op-ed for the Daily News in support of a state medical marijuana bill. It was titled, “My epiphany on medical marijuana: Sen. Al D’Amato explains why he came around on pot policy.” At the end of his piece, there was a disclosure that D’Amato is a “paid senior advisor” for the Marijuana Policy Project of New York.
He wrote a similar op-ed in 2014 in the Long Island Herald not long after signing a $15,000 per month lobbying contract with two cannabis-related companies. The co-founder of one of those companies, Richard Yost, noted that $200,000 was budgeted for the full year. He told Newsday, “It’s a Republican issue in the Senate, and Park Strategies has a strong relationship on that side.”It’s this kind of influence peddling that is ruining our political system.
These men’s views on cannabis may have genuinely shifted over the years, but it’s very convenient (and lucrative) to now be lobbying on behalf of the right side of history. John Boehner recently claimed that his position on marijuana “evolved,” but he had a 0% rating from the pro-marijuana legalization group, NORML, before leaving office. He was also the leading recipient of donations from the tobacco industry, which has aggressively lobbied against marijuana legalization. . .