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Shutdown Breakthrough, Criminal Justice Reforms, Cannabis Update

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Shutdown Breakthrough
Earlier today, President Trump said he would support a plan to end the longest government shutdown in U.S. history, which has furloughed 800,000 federal employees or forced them to work without pay. The deal would reopen the federal government for three weeks, giving congressional lawmakers time to negotiate a plan for border security. Pressure had been growing on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Trump, as delays and security concerns mounted at the nation’s airports over growing numbers of TSA workers and air traffic controllers calling in sick. On Thursday, competing bills to end the shutdown died on the Senate floor, while House Democrats were prepared to offer billions of dollars more to boost border security through the use of drones and hiring more personnel at ports of entry.


  • Aimee Allison, Founder, She the People
  • Carla Marinucci, Senior Writer, Politico
  • Sean Walsh, GOP Consultant, Wilson Walsh Consulting

Criminal Justice Reforms
Last year, Jerry Brown signed legislation that would have ended cash bail for criminal defendants. The practice was widely viewed as being discriminatory, keeping low-income people behind bars awaiting trial. But the law will now be put on hold pending the outcome of a measure challenging it, which has qualified for the 2020 ballot. This week, Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled a plan to shift control of the state’s youth prisons in an effort to focus on rehabilitation instead of incarceration for juvenile offenders.


  • Marisa Lagos, KQED California Politics and Government Reporter
  • Daniel Macallair, Executive Director, Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice

Cannabis Update
California recently released its final set of rules for cannabis businesses. One of those rules now allows marijuana deliveries to anyone 21 or older anywhere in the state, including cities and counties that have banned sales of the drug. And while there were $2.5 billion in legal sales of cannabis last year in California, that’s a decrease from 2017, when only medical marijuana sales were allowed. The black market continues to be a problem, along with other challenges for the industry, such as consistency among labs that are required to test the safety and purity of pot products.



  • David Downs, California Cannabis Bureau Chief, Leafly.com

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