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Posted on: February 14, 2021
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NATALIE FERTIG

Democratic-led Senate could clear a path to marijuana legalization

Canadian companies also are eyeing the U.S. market. Cannabis giant Canopy Growth Corp. recently announced a deal — contingent on U.S. legalization — to acquire a big stake in TerrAscend, which has operations in California, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The deal is similar to Canopy’s arrangement to buy Acreage Holdings, which has 71 dispensaries and operations in 15 states, if marijuana restrictions in the U.S. are lifted.

Stock prices for some of the biggest cannabis companies have skyrocketed in recent weeks. Acreage’s stock price has nearly doubled since Democrats won control of the Senate, while the price of Cresco’s shares have jumped by more than 30 percent. “People are scrambling right now, and they're taking a calculated risk that federal change is going to happen in the near term,” Kline said.

What’s the reality on Capitol Hill?

Despite the ebullient feelings among industry advocates and investors, the likelihood that Congress will make big changes to federal marijuana restrictions remains slim. That’s in large part because Democrats will have a razor-thin majority and need 60 votes to pass most legislation.

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