Cannabis stocks were mixed on Thursday, a day after a landmark congressional hearing on reforming U.S. laws that found bipartisan agreement that the current setup is a mess and needs to change.
CannTrust shares took another bath after a report said the company built fake walls to hide from regulators that it was growing unlicensed product.
“Marijuana decriminalization may be one of the very few issues upon which bipartisan agreement can still be reached in this session,” said Republican Rep. Tom McClintock of California at a hearing held by the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on crime and terrorism.
The current clash between federal restrictions and state laws “is no longer sustainable” McClintock said, drawing praise from Rep. Jerrold Nadler, the New York Democrat who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, with the caveat that he disagreed with McClintock’s assertion that the Democrats were playing the race card, as MarketWatch’s Victor Reklaitis reported.
Nadler responded that it’s “a fact of life” that “enforcement of marijuana laws has been done in a racially disparate manner.”
Overall, analysts still expect the current Congress is unlikely to move far on removing the current federal ban, mostly because of opposition from the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has vowed to oppose it.
“Ultimately, the political divide between the House and Senate will serve as the greatest roadblock,” Height Capital Markets wrote in a recent note.
Jessica Rabe, co-founder of data and markets research company Datatrek, said Thursday 2020 will likely see the next big push for retail cannabis legalization, either through legislative action, as happened recently in Illinois, or the ballot box.
For investors, it’s important to note than 28% of the U.S. population now live in a