A.G. Barr Prompted Cannabis Industry Probe
According to reports on Forbes, a whistleblower in the Department of Justice testified on Wednesday July 15th that the Attorney General initiated investigations into the cannabis industry improperly. The whistleblower alleges that the reasons for the Attorney General doing so are based on his negative feelings about the cannabis industry and what it portrays.
Attorney General Barr is currently facing criticism by Democrats and Leftist organizations that allege the A.G. is politicizing his office. Some have gone further and alleged that the politicization is to the benefit of the Presidents agenda. That has still yet to be proven but the word is out and the tit for tat arguments are actively going back and forth.
John Elias is a career DOJ employee who testified Wednesday July 15th. Joining the DOJ in 2006, John Elias served as the Antitrust Division Chief of Staff between the dates of Jan 2017 until Oct 2018. According to John Elias, full review investigations in the marijuana industry only made up 29% of fiscal 2019 totals. So that information begs to differ, is 29% suitable enough to allege that the Attorney General had an animus hunt against the cannabis industry? This, after he publicly announced in 2017 that he would not be prosecuting any cannabis violations in states where full legalization has occurred.
Additionally, what where the investigations based on? Where they a way to find the corruption that has enveloped the cannabis industry from business to politics? Cannabexchange previously wrote about this problem in an article called “FBI Investigates Corruption in the Cannabis Industry”. Another theme of thought is what the allegations are trying to insinuate. That A.G. Barr is maliciously going after the cannabis industry for pure personal motives. Which includes his alleged animosity towards the cannabis industry.
John Elias, however, is not without his controversy. The DOJ career employee is known to have previously aimed to work for the Democratic Party under the Judiciary Committee of Oversight and Antitrust matters. This endeavor that John Elias undertook to work with the Democratic party was during the Trump Impeachment Trials. It begs to ask, if there is an agenda brewing here?
Prior to John Elias testifying on July 15th, the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility opened an investigation on this matter, and on Elias concerning this matter. According to their findings, the JDOPR came to the conclusion that the divisions in charge of running the investigation did in fact act within reasonable and appropriate legal parameters. This report is according to an email obtained by the New York Times, which was acquired during the hearings on Wednesday.
According to reports by fox News, Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim reach out to Jim Jordan via inscription on July 1st stating that Elias provided a testimony that was at best misleading and was in fact lacking in critical factual information. The Assistant Attorney General also added that first-hand knowledge of materials facts where lacking in this report.
Allegations made by the two Justice Department Officials have created another Judiciary committee hearing this coming Tuesday. This hearing is alleged to be an effort by the Democratic party to put to the forefront allegations put forth by individuals that have been known to subscribe to the Democratic party’s support and goals.
As reported, the hearing quickly got heated in context and found a way to turn hostile. It was reported that Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tex.) pounded loudly in order to silence a witness from testifying because he passed his allotted time. Additionally, it was reported that Rep. Tom Collins threw an insult at Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.).
During the Judiciary Committee hearing, John Elias claimed that there were ten all out reviews on activities taking place in the cannabis industry as it relates to mergers and acquisitions. According to established parameters in antitrust investigations, the current investigations did not meet the threshold for them to be executed. The industry has a lower than adequate market share and It is acknowledged as a fragmented industry. Not your typical candidate for an antitrust investigation.
If you would like to add more to this article, create a free account and comment on the section below. We love to hear from our readers and subscribers. If you’re interested in contributing to our content department, please take a look at our guest posting cost, rules and company regulations.