Florida Governor Launches PAC To Fund Campaign Against Legalizing Weed

Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday announced the establishment of a new political action committee to fund a campaign to defeat a ballot measure to legalize recreational marijuana in the state. Dubbed the Florida Freedom Fund, the new PAC will also raise money to help defeat a separate initiative to protect abortion rights that will appear on the ballot for the November general election.

The political committee was formed in late May, Politico reported on Monday. The group is chaired by James Uthmeier, the governor’s chief of staff who also served as campaign manager for DeSantis’ failed bid for the presidency. The move comes as the governor works to reestablish his leadership over the Florida Republican Party after his failed presidential bid caused his influence to wane.

The Florida Freedom Fund was formed to raise money for the campaign against Amendment 3, which would amend the Florida Constitution to legalize the possession and use of cannabis for adults. The political committee also has set its sights on Amendment 4, which would firmly establish the right to abortion in the Florida Constitution.

Amendment 3 Would Legalize Weed in Florida

More than one million voters signed petitions to place Amendment 3 on the ballot for the 2024 general election. If passed, the constitutional amendment initiative would allow the state’s current providers of medical marijuana, which was legalized in Florida in 2016, to begin selling cannabis to all adults aged 21 and up. Adults would be allowed to purchase up to three ounces of marijuana at a time, including no more than five grams of cannabis concentrates. The bill does not include provisions to expunge past cannabis convictions or the home cultivation of marijuana, which activists feared would lead the Supreme Court to block the measure based on state laws that limit ballot initiatives to a single subject.

The proposed constitutional amendment also allows state lawmakers to authorize additional adult-use cannabis business licenses, although there is no requirement for the legislature to do so. The initiative retains Florida’s current vertically integrated business structure, which requires operators to control the production and marketing of marijuana from seed to sale.

A source familiar with the governor’s plans but not authorized to speak about them said that in addition to the marijuana and abortion initiatives, the Florida Freedom Fund would support other races on the ballot, including seats for local school board elections. A spokesperson for the fund confirmed to Politico that the committee would target races other than Amendments 3 and 4.

“As Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to lead our great state, the Florida Freedom Fund will be championing issues and candidates committed to preserving Floridians’ freedom,” said Taryn Fenske, a spokesperson for the governor, according to a report from Politico. “From up and down ballot races to critical amendments, we’re steadfast in our mission to keep Florida free.”

After the launch of the political committee was announced, a spokesperson for Smart & Safe Florida, the group backing the marijuana legalization initiative, noted that the funds raised by the Florida Freedom Fund will be split between the two amendment initiatives and other races throughout the state. By contrast, the Smart & Safe Florida campaign has already raised more than $60 million, according to state data, with over $13 million cash on hand and a $5 million ad buy currently engaging with voters across the state.

“We are proud of the campaign we are building and the broad support we have across the political spectrum throughout Florida,” Morgan Hill, spokesperson for Smart & Safe Florida, wrote in a statement emailed to High Times. “Just last week, a new Fox News poll showed a large majority of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents support Amendment 3. It’s clear Floridians are more ready than ever to legalize recreational adult-use marijuana.”

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7 Cannabinoids In One Gummy? Damn!

If you’re a fan of full spectrum cannabis cannabinoids, there’s one line you don’t want to miss: the Super 7 line from the fan favorite brand Binoid.  For several years now, Binoid has been at the forefront of developing legal psychoactive cannabis products infused with the latest and greatest discoveries, from rare cannabinoids to powerful live resin extracts. This includes THC-P and THCA recently. 

With their Super 7 line, they’ve taken things to the next level, offering up a whopping 7 cannabinoids in one, in the form of either mouthwatering, vegan gummies, or potent, convenient tinctures. 

These Super 7 gummies have racked up over 700 five star reviews (that’s a lot!) from Binoid, who is one of the best brands in the THC game right now. Let’s take a closer look at what this line entails. And the best part, you can use the code HIGHTIMES25 for 25% off with fast and free shipping to try these insane Super 7 gummies for yourself. 

Binoid’s New Super 7 Line

Binoid’s Super 7 Line has brought us two standout formulas: the Super 7 Gummies and the Super 7 Tincture.  As always, Binoid has made sure to check all of the boxes when it comes to quality, with ultra-pure distillates extracted using the most advanced and cleanest methods.  Now, let’s get into the details.

Treat Yourself to 7 Top-Notch Cannabinoids at Once

As the name implies, the Super 7 products contain a combination of 7 cannabinoids:

  • THCA: THCA is the raw form of delta 9 THC, naturally found in cannabis flower.  When heated through decarboxylation, it turns into delta 9 THC, but because it’s tested in its raw state, it’s completely legal under federal law.
  • THC-H: THC-H is believed to be the second most intoxicating cannabinoid in cannabis, after THC-P, being several times stronger than delta 9 THC, and particularly uplifting in its effects.
  • THC-B: THC-B is slightly milder than THC-H, but still extremely powerful in its ability to intoxicate.  The high is said to be quite sativa-like.
  • HHC: HHC is the analog of delta 9 THC found in the plant’s pollen and seeds, behaving just like delta 9 but having an additional hydrogen atom to distinguish it in terms of its chemical structure.
  • Delta 8: Delta 8 THC is 30% milder than delta 9 THC, and its high is very indica-like, in that it can offer a soothing, mellow experience that can help you unwind.
  • Delta 9P: Delta 9P is a relatively new member of the cannabinoid family, acting as a semi-synthesized hybrid of delta 9 THC and THC-P.  The result is a high that’s even stronger than THC-P, which can definitely get you high beyond your wildest imagination.
  • THCV: Finally, there’s THCV, a very mildly intoxicating cannabinoid known for its gentle mood-lifting effects.

Now, as you can imagine, consuming 7 cannabinoids at once means that the high is going to be totally one of a kind.  Binoid has spent a lot of time developing this unique combo, and the result is a high that feels unbelievably balanced.  

It’s never too stimulating nor too sedating, and despite the exceptionally high potency of many of the cannabinoids, it feels grounded thanks to the presence of cannabinoids that can work together synergistically to keep you nice and calm for the duration of the experience.

7000MG Gummies and Tinctures to Explore

The Super 7 line comes in two product types: gummies and a tincture.  The gummies contain a staggering 350mg of this cannabinoid combo per piece, with 20 gummies total in every containerThe tincture contains 7000mg total, or 233.33mg per dropper.  Needless to say, both are phenomenally potent, so you’ll want to dose accordingly.  

At the same time, Binoid is known for their unbelievably pure cannabinoid distillates, which average around 99%, which means that you’ll get your money’s worth in more ways than one.  The gummies contain live resin, which is a really nice addition to the experience. And the tincture has just hemp extract and MCT Oil, so no bs fillers or other ingredients if you are sensitive.

Clean, Vegan Formulas

Binoid’s formulas have a reputation for being “clean,” meaning that they’re not loaded with additives and fillers that detract from the quality.  The gummies are 100% vegan, and use as many plant-based ingredients as possible.  Meanwhile, the tincture formula contains just cannabinoid distillates, full-spectrum hemp extract, and MCT oil – a derivative of coconut oil – to offer a minimal formula that you can totally trust.  

Full-Spectrum for the Win

Keep in mind that both products are full-spectrum.  This means that in addition to the 7 cannabinoids that they contain, they also have full-spectrum hemp extract, a pure extract that contains the full chemical composition of the hemp plant, complete with 100+ cannabinoids, terpenes, nutrients, and flavonoids.  

Not only does this give you a more well-balanced type of high, but it also offers the entourage effect, which is the synergistic benefit of consuming all of these beneficial compounds at the same time, as nature intended. And if you love them, you can get a Super 7 gummy bundle for an amazing deal. 

Lab-Tested and Organically Derived

Binoid doesn’t mess around when it comes to quality.  You’ll be pleased to find that both products come with comprehensive third-party lab reports, which are easy to access on their website.  These lab reports break down every chemical compound present in the product, as well as the purity of the distillates, their potency, the safety of the product, and whether or not it complies with federal law.  

Not only that, but Binoid’s products are known for containing hemp extracts derived from only organically grown hemp material, meaning that the formulas are pesticide-free – not to mention non-GMO, which is always something that’s important.  The hemp is sourced locally, which is important because it means it’s grown under the very strict standards of the USDA, and that because it doesn’t have to travel far, you can count on it being totally fresh. 

Give the Super 7 Line a Try!

Binoid’s Super 7 products are certain to be some of the most in-demand cannabinoid blend formulas of 2024.  Between the delectable Super 7 Gummies and the potent Super 7 Tincture, you’ll have no trouble finding the powerful high you crave, while feeling a sense of balanced bliss for hours on end.  

We encourage you to check out both of these formulas, which are brand new to Binoid’s catalog, and know you’re in for something truly special, thanks to the incredible mastery that Binoid has demonstrated over the years.

Explore Binoid’s Super 7 Line today, and enjoy being treated to some of the best prices and quality around and don’t forget to use the code HIGHTIMES25 for 25% off while being treated to fast shipping so that you can take advantage of this Super 7 Line.

To buy Binoid’s Super 7 Line, Click Here

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Leaders in Dallas, Texas Pursue Cannabis Decriminalization

The city of Dallas, Texas will soon discuss whether or not to add a measure on the November ballot that would decriminalize small amounts of cannabis.

Recently in a news release, Dallas Councilmember Chad West announced that the Dallas Freedom Act will be proposed on June 26. “Voters in our city and across the country want to decriminalize marijuana,” said West. “Our already burdened police should focus their attention on serious crime, not arresting people with small amounts of marijuana. Bringing this to voters through a City Council-proposed Charter amendment instead of a petition will save the city time and resources.”

The proposal was accelerated through a petition which collected more than 50,000 signatures through the help of Ground Game Texas. If passed into law, it would prevent police from giving tickets or arresting people for possessing less than four ounces of cannabis through Class A or Class B misdemeanors.  “Voters in our city and across the country want to decriminalize marijuana,” said West. “Our already burdened police should focus their attention on serious crime, not arresting people with small amounts of marijuana.”

Ground Game Texas has assisted numerous other Texas cities in passing decriminalization, such as Austin, Denton, Killeen, and San Marcos. However, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton recently sued some of those cities (specifically Austin, Denton, Elgin, Killeen, and San Marcos) for passing decriminalization bills at the end of January. “I will not stand idly by as cities run by pro-crime extremists deliberately violate Texas law and promote the use of illicit drugs that harm our communities,” Paxton said. “This unconstitutional action by municipalities demonstrates why Texas must have a law to ‘follow the law.’ It’s quite simple: the legislature passes every law after a full debate on the issues, and we don’t allow cities the ability to create anarchy by picking and choosing the laws they enforce.”

Former Ground Game Texas executive director, Julie Oliver, accused Paxton of fighting against the will of the people. “Ken Paxton’s lawsuits represent an anti-democratic assault on the constitutional authority of Texas Home Rule cities to set local law enforcement priorities,” said Oliver at the time. “In each of the cities sued, a supermajority of voters adopted a policy to deprioritize marijuana enforcement in order to reduce racially biased law enforcement outcomes and save scarce public resources for higher priority public safety needs.”

The Dallas Observer asked West how he thinks Paxton would react if Dallas decriminalized cannabis. “I would hope the attorney general would support and respect the strong will of Dallas residents on this issue. However, based on past actions, I am not optimistic,” West said.

Alongside West, councilmembers Adam Bazaldua, Jaime Resendez, and Zarin Gracey are also in support of decriminalization in Dallas. Bazaldua said in a recent press statement that it’s essential to give voters a chance to pass the bill. “For the past four years I have advocated for our council to implement this kind of initiative,” said Bazaldua. “Our jails are overfilled with predominantly Brown and Black males serving sentences for a substance that is making others millions of dollars in more than 30 states across the country. It’s past time we take action against this injustice.”

Bazaldua initially proposed decriminalization in 2021, which led Dallas law enforcement to stop arresting people if they were in possession of less than two ounces of cannabis, however, the Dallas Police Department (DPD) has continued to make arrests, according to Resendez. “Despite the positive steps taken by the city and DPD in recent years, marijuana-related arrests continue, and racial disparities persist,” Resendez said. “Although marijuana use is comparable across racial lines, Black and Latino individuals are disproportionately arrested and punished. Decriminalization is the best way to address this disparity.”

Gracey also added that decriminalizing is mainly about righting the wrongs of the War on Drugs. “Decriminalizing marijuana is not just about changing laws; it’s about rectifying decades of injustice and ensuring that our legal system is fair and equitable for all,” Gracey said.

Oliver was replaced as Ground Game Texas executive director by Catina Voellinger in April, although no reason was presented by the organization. “We’ve built a very strong and mighty team that’s greater than the sum of its parts, right?” said Voellinger after she took the position. “So the main message is that Ground Game is a force, and we’re not going anywhere. None of our programs have ceased. We’re not going to back out on any of the things we’ve committed to. And we’re excited about the future and growing this movement.” 

Recently there have been two ongoing lawsuits against the city of Killeen, which remain unaffected by the recent change in executive director position at Ground Game Texas. “I thoroughly enjoyed working with Julie and I’ll continue to work with her,” said Bell County Commissioner Louie Minor. “I don’t know what her plans are, but I know that she’s dedicated to bringing change to Bell County and all over the state. The impact of Julie and Ground Game has been statewide; but here in Bell County, they were instrumental in getting a more progressive voice in elected positions and giving residents a chance to vote on issues that they care about.”

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Elevate Your Summer: Stigma Cannabis Pioneering The THC-Beverage Scene

It’s almost summertime; lazy, sunny, lake-filled days are almost upon us. The sound of cicadas fill the air, and everyone is reaching for a cold, refreshing beverage to enjoy as they sit back and relax. Let’s all agree; there is nothing better than a lemony, Arnold Palmer to quench our thirst. Oh wait, there is! Beverages like Stigma’s award-winning Lemonade Iced Tea is an elevated version of this classic blend, and if it isn’t at the top your list of summer must haves; it should be.

Since the legalization of adult-use cannabis and hemp derived THC in Minnesota in 2022, the region has been instrumental in pioneering the newest niche – hemp THC beverages. Stigma’s CEO Josh Malowski explains, “Minnesota has become fertile ground for innovation in the federally legal hemp industry, and Stigma is excited to be a big part of that.”

From RSO to D9: A Journey of Healing and Innovation

Maslowski’s journey in founding Stigma was deeply influenced by his mother-in-law’s battle with cancer. Through extensive research, he discovered Rick Simpson Oil (RSO), a cannabis extract renowned for its potential in fighting cancer. Inspired by Simpson’s own experience and the anecdotal evidence surrounding RSO’s efficacy, Maslowski and his brother-in-law embarked on crafting their own batch of RSO. Following his mother-in-law’s brain surgery, she started a RSO regiment that greatly contributed to her quality of life. “She lived 24 high quality months instead of the prognosis of 14 months on chemo and radiation. She even kayaked with her grandkids in the final weeks before her passing.”

Spreading the Word, One Sip at a Time

This transformative experience inspired and ignited Maslowski’s advocacy for cannabis and further motivated him. “I wanted to create this brand to destigmatize cannabis and help educate the people that have been misinformed the past 80 years.”

Maslowki explains that the stigmatization of cannabis stemmed from a combination of economic interests, political agendas, and societal biases. Pharmaceutical companies were unable to patent cannabis. A smear campaign was launched against its therapeutic use, targeting prescribing doctors as “quacks”. Industries like cotton and timber lobbied against hemp production for their own agenda in paper and textiles. Politically-driven prohibitionist agendas also perpetuated the portrayal of cannabis as a dangerous drug through propaganda campaigns like “Reefer Madness.”  Cannabis also became associated with marginalized groups, leading to discriminatory practices such as for-profit jailing, while the term “marijuana” was used to evoke racial stereotypes and gain support from xenophobic voters.

“Hence the name, Stigma.” Maslowki notes. “We are removing the stigma surrounding cannabis, and our key ingredient is a flower, and every flower has a stigma.”  

The Future is Bright for Stigma

Stigma has not only become Minnesota’s favorite cannabis brand, their Lemonade Iced Tea is the number one selling product in many liquor stores selling THC drinks today. “We were one of the first brands in this space in 2018. Fast forward, now we are a leading THC brand and have a top selling beverage reaching thousands of people every week.” Maslowski asserts, “Our drinks offer an option for people who want to feel better on a daily basis or don’t want to drink alcohol . Trends suggest that people of the older generation are opening up to THC, and people 30 and under are consuming less alcohol than previous generations. We offer a great alternative for someone who wants to feel good both at the end of the day and the next morning.”

Stigma is set to expand its reach beyond Minnesota with plans to go nationwide this year (in accordance with state by state law). They have also added a THC-derived Club Soda to their list of products that can be mixed to make all kinds of summery cocktails. Maslowski notes that new beverage flavors are on the horizon as well including peach, berry and a line of functional waters. “We are so grateful for our success and ability to educate and inform so many people. We hear from people, multigenerational people, everyone from 21 to 91, who are benefitting from cannabis whether it is to help them with daily aches and pains, illness, anxiety, sleep or to just relax.” 

While much needs to be done to remove the stigma and misinformation plaguing cannabis, companies like Stigma are leading the way towards acceptance and understanding. By offering innovative products, and championing education, Stigma has become not just a beverage brand or a cannabis brand but a catalyst for a positive paradigm shift surrounding cannabis and its many potential benefits. As consumers raise their glasses to a new era of cannabis consumption, Stigma raises its glass, honoring the past while shaping the future of summertime relaxation.

Check out Stigma’s full list of products. 

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Survey Finds 1 Out of 6 Americans Use Weed, Many for Medical Reasons

One out of six primary care patients said they used marijuana in a survey of cannabis use, with many saying their use was primarily for medical reasons. The study by researchers at the University of California Los Angeles also found that a third of cannabis consumers reported weed at levels that put them at moderate or high risk of cannabis use disorder.

The research, which was published by JAMA Open Network on Wednesday, suggests that many cannabis consumers use the drug for medicinal purposes, despite characterizing their use as recreational. The researchers behind the study say the findings indicate a need for routine cannabis screenings of primary care patients. Currently, few healthcare systems offer screenings for cannabis use in the primary care setting.

“Patients may not tell their primary care providers about their cannabis use, and their doctors may not ask about it,” lead author Dr. Lillian Gelberg, professor of family medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and of health policy and management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, said in a statement to UCLA Health.  “Not asking patients about their cannabis use results in a missed opportunity for opening up doctor-patient communication regarding use of cannabis generally and for management of their symptoms.”

In 2020, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommended that primary care physicians screen their adult patients for the use of cannabis and other substances. The following year, the researchers who conducted the study launched a self-administered survey on cannabis use and medical cannabis use as part of the UCLA Health medical system’s universal electronic health record. Patients complete the survey via the system’s online portal as part of the pre-visit screening before visits for primary care.

UCLA Health is one of only a few healthcare systems that ask patients to complete a voluntary cannabis use assessment as part of the pre-visit process for primary care patients. UCLA Health uses the WHO Alcohol Substance Involvement Screening Test (ASSIST) to assess cannabis use.

The researchers used anonymized health record data collected by UCLA Health between January 2021 and May 2023 to determine the prevalence of cannabis use and the reasons patients are using the drug and to identify other factors that correlate with cannabis use. Approximately 176,000 patients completed the survey, including almost 30,000 (17%) who said they were cannabis users. Among those who self-reported cannabis use, 35% had results that suggested a moderate or high risk of cannabis use disorder.

Among cannabis users, 40% had consumed weed once or twice during the previous three months, 17% used marijuana monthly, a quarter (25%) used cannabis every week and nearly a fifth (19%) used weed on a daily or near-daily basis.

Nearly half (47%) of respondents said that they used cannabis medicinally. However, 76% used weed to manage symptoms such as mental health symptoms or stress (56%), sleep (56%) and pain (37%). Additionally, most patients who said they used marijuana recreationally had also used it to manage a symptom at some point in their lives.

The researchers note that the study had limitations, including a reliance on self-reported data. Additionally, while cannabis is legal in California, the stigma attached to the plant may mean that some patients did not fully disclose their cannabis use. The survey data was collected during the Covid-19 pandemic when the use of cannabis may have been higher than it would have been otherwise.

However, “given the high rates of cannabis use and medical cannabis use that we found in this large urban healthcare system, it is essential that healthcare systems implement routine screening of all primary care patients,” the researchers wrote.  “Integrating screening efforts to include information regarding cannabis use for symptom management could help enhance the identification and documentation of medical cannabis usage, particularly in the healthcare context.”

Dr. Benjamin Caplan, M.D., the author of The Doctor-Approved Cannabis Handbook, cited other shortcomings of the study, including its focus on cannabis use disorder. He says that the test used by the researchers is designed to assess multiple substance use disorders and lacks a detailed focus on cannabis users’ specific characteristics. 

Despite these and other study limitations, Caplan commended the researchers for “acknowledging important opportunities, like the need for informed conversations.” 

“Healthcare providers must integrate discussions about cannabis use into routine care, allowing patients to communicate their experiences openly,” he wrote in an email to High Time. “Doctors need to understand why patients choose cannabis over conventional treatments and be informed about both the risks and benefits of cannabis. This will lead to better management strategies and support systems for cannabis users, whether their use is medical or non-medical.”

Caplan added that the study “reveals a key takeaway: even patients within primary care are heavily reliant on cannabis for symptom relief. This underscores a critical issue that is seen throughout our medical system, which is that doctors are not adequately meeting patients’ needs for managing anxiety, sleeplessness, pain, and other symptoms. That is important news that isn’t discussed loudly enough.”

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