Tulsi Gabbard joins us and shares her views on getting past partisan politics in the federal government: “We would have far more bipartisan and nonpartisan work being done if we set aside the politics and the political interests and actually said, “Hey, here’s a challenge that is common to people in my district and people in your district. Let’s sit together and bring our different ideas to the forefront and actually figure out how to solve it.”
Seth Adler: US Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard joins us. Welcome to Cannabis Economy. I'm your host Seth Adler. Download episodes on canneconomy.com, that's two n's and the word economy.
Seth Adler: We've got a ton of direct insight up on canneconomy.com, including a digital workshop that we're doing featuring top level policy, business and science folks discussing what is and what should be happening now in cannabis. First, a word from Wana Brands and then US Congresswoman, Tulsi Gabbard.
Seth Adler: Want to know what's Wana Brands? Nancy, working with regulators and regulations.
Nancy: At Wana we actually try to be hyper-compliant. In general, we're big supporters of any regulations that increase public safety. The big challenge for us comes is that every single state has its own version of this. So we have to be prepared to adjust what we do for every state and sometimes there's two governing bodies per state. So it is challenging, but we are making it work.
Tulsi Gabbard: So, I joined the UN secretary general as a cohost of the first International Yoga Day. And we did yoga asanas together on the UN lawn. It was great.
Seth Adler: That is fantastic. That's a great way to start with congresswoman Gabbard. Thank you so much for giving me a few minutes here.
Tulsi Gabbard: Thank you, Seth. It's good to talk to you.
Seth Adler: If we have more time, we'll talk more yoga later, but-
Tulsi Gabbard: Awesome.
Seth Adler: ... I think our purpose should be cannabis, at least to begin with.
Tulsi Gabbard: Sure.
Seth Adler: And so my friend Carlos Curbelo, you've worked with him, you've worked with Don Young. These are two different people to you in many different ways on the Data Act, right?
Tulsi Gabbard: Yeah.
Seth Adler: So let's just dive right in.
Tulsi Gabbard: Awesome. Look, I think it's important to recognize that how much progress the country has made in passing cannabis reform legislation, legalization in different forms and different states. But unfortunately, how far behind Washington is in bringing about those changes. So you mentioned two of my friends and colleagues. Republicans Carlos Curbelo's unfortunately no longer here, but Don Young.
Seth Adler: It's okay, we still keep in touch. He's going to be okay.
Tulsi Gabbard: Don Young has picked up the baton.
Seth Adler: Sure.
Tulsi Gabbard: And so we're continuing to build momentum and support around two important pieces of legislation. One is the Marijuana Data Collection Act. I think one of the biggest obstacles that stands in the way of progress is how many myths and misinformation and stigma there still is around cannabis. It is most often used as the excuse for why people refuse to support passing any kind of reforms or legislation.
Tulsi Gabbard: So our bill very simply commissions a neutral study by the National Academy of Sciences that will collect information from across the 33 states plus DC who have legalized cannabis in one form or another so that we can have data and facts and statistics that show what the impacts of that change in policy has had on people, on our economy, on our criminal justice system, on our education system across the board so that we can have that information out there that people can look to.
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