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Ep. 408: Kris Krane, 4Front Ventures

Cannabis Economy Podcast
Ep. 408: Kris Krane, 4Front Ventures

Ep. 408: Kris Krane, 4Front Ventures

Kris Krane is back to talk about the big win that democrats -and thus cannabis- have had in the House election and general politics, and what that really means for cannabis reform. Even with strides being made in politics, there are still hurdles to surpass. With the slow process of bureaucracy, four states are the focus of attention; Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

Transcript:

Seth Adler: Kris Krane returns. Welcome to Cannabis Economy. I'm your host, Seth Adler. Download episodes on canneconomy.com. That's two Ns and the word economy. First, a word from Wana Brands, and then Kris Krane.
MedMen continues to expand its footprint on the cannabis landscape opening new stores in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and the iconic Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. They've also opened a 45,000-foot high-tech cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facility in Nevada. The company has reached a $1-billion valuation, making it the country's first cannabis unicorn, and it's just the beginning. Learn how MedMen is building the future of cannabis today at medmen.com.
Kris Krane, I owe you a nickel.

Kris Krane: You owe me a nickel.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: What was our bet again?

Seth Adler: Well, it was about Election Day.

Kris Krane: It was about Election Day.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes. That's right.

Seth Adler: I thought everything would remain the same.

Kris Krane: That's right. No, I said the Democrats would take the House.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah, and was right on that. They won big. They won big. The House was a real wave.

Seth Adler: The House was a real wave.

Kris Krane: Yes.

Seth Adler: What we have here is a failure to Pete Sessions anymore. You understand what I'm saying?

Kris Krane: I do. I do. Ding, dong, the witch is dead. Yeah.

Seth Adler: That's exactly what I was just going to say. If you're a person that's listening to us and you don't necessarily think that that's that big of a deal, how would Kris Krane explain how big of a deal that is?

Kris Krane: Pete or Jeff?

Seth Adler: Pete.

Kris Krane: Pete. It would have been a much bigger deal had the Democrats not taken the House. It's interesting in that it's a big deal symbolically, right, to take out probably arguably the most anti-cannabis member of Congress, the guy who was single-handedly responsible for not allowing any votes on any cannabis measures for the last three years or so.

Seth Adler: At least.

Kris Krane: Yeah, since he's been at the Rules Committee. That's a really big deal, and I'd like to think that his awfulness on this issue was a piece of what contributed to him being ousted. Now, that said, had he not lost and the Democrats still took the House, it wouldn't have been that big of a deal because he loses his power, right?

Seth Adler: He doesn't have that power anymore anyway. Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah. The House is one-party rule, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: If you have 50% plus one in the House, you get all the committee chairmanships. You get to make all the decisions. The minority has basically no power in the House, so the Democrats would have taken over the chairmanship of the Rules Committee anyway.

Seth Adler: Which they have.

Kris Krane: Which they have now, and they have said that they will allow for votes on marijuana. They will call votes on marijuana.

Seth Adler: Well, he has, right?

Kris Krane: The chair.

Seth Adler: Our new chairman.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right, the new chair of the Rules Committee. Sessions, if he were still there, would just be pouting in the back bench and quietly crying to himself that they're allowing votes on 280E, and banking, and the other good things that we want to see, but those things would have happened whether he was there or not, but don't get me wrong. Losing him's a big deal. The marijuana reform community really made an effort to get rid of him. There was a concerted effort to oust him, and it was a razor-thin election there. He lost in a very close race, and I would like to think that his advocacy for prohibition and the work that our side did on that may have been the deciding factor.

Seth Adler: Kris Krane returns. Welcome to Cannabis Economy. I'm your host, Seth Adler. Download episodes on canneconomy.com. That's two Ns and the word economy. First, a word from Wana Brands, and then Kris Krane.
MedMen continues to expand its footprint on the cannabis landscape opening new stores in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and the iconic Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. They've also opened a 45,000-foot high-tech cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facility in Nevada. The company has reached a $1-billion valuation, making it the country's first cannabis unicorn, and it's just the beginning. Learn how MedMen is building the future of cannabis today at medmen.com.
Kris Krane, I owe you a nickel.

Kris Krane: You owe me a nickel.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: What was our bet again?

Seth Adler: Well, it was about Election Day.

Kris Krane: It was about Election Day.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes. That's right.

Seth Adler: I thought everything would remain the same.

Kris Krane: That's right. No, I said the Democrats would take the House.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah, and was right on that. They won big. They won big. The House was a real wave.

Seth Adler: The House was a real wave.

Kris Krane: Yes.

Seth Adler: What we have here is a failure to Pete Sessions anymore. You understand what I'm saying?

Kris Krane: I do. I do. Ding, dong, the witch is dead. Yeah.

Seth Adler: That's exactly what I was just going to say. If you're a person that's listening to us and you don't necessarily think that that's that big of a deal, how would Kris Krane explain how big of a deal that is?

Kris Krane: Pete or Jeff?

Seth Adler: Pete.

Kris Krane: Pete. It would have been a much bigger deal had the Democrats not taken the House. It's interesting in that it's a big deal symbolically, right, to take out probably arguably the most anti-cannabis member of Congress, the guy who was single-handedly responsible for not allowing any votes on any cannabis measures for the last three years or so.

Seth Adler: At least.

Kris Krane: Yeah, since he's been at the Rules Committee. That's a really big deal, and I'd like to think that his awfulness on this issue was a piece of what contributed to him being ousted. Now, that said, had he not lost and the Democrats still took the House, it wouldn't have been that big of a deal because he loses his power, right?

Seth Adler: He doesn't have that power anymore anyway. Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah. The House is one-party rule, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: If you have 50% plus one in the House, you get all the committee chairmanships. You get to make all the decisions. The minority has basically no power in the House, so the Democrats would have taken over the chairmanship of the Rules Committee anyway.

Seth Adler: Which they have.

Kris Krane: Which they have now, and they have said that they will allow for votes on marijuana. They will call votes on marijuana.

Seth Adler: Well, he has, right?

Kris Krane: The chair.

Seth Adler: Our new chairman.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right, the new chair of the Rules Committee. Sessions, if he were still there, would just be pouting in the back bench and quietly crying to himself that they're allowing votes on 280E, and banking, and the other good things that we want to see, but those things would have happened whether he was there or not, but don't get me wrong. Losing him's a big deal. The marijuana reform community really made an effort to get rid of him. There was a concerted effort to oust him, and it was a razor-thin election there. He lost in a very close race, and I would like to think that his advocacy for prohibition and the work that our side did on that may have been the deciding factor.

Seth Adler: Colin Allred, the guy that did beat him, was obviously a pro.

Kris Krane: Was pro, that's right. That's right.

Seth Adler: To say the least.

Kris Krane: That's right.

Seth Adler: With all due respect to Colin, or I should say Congressman-Elect Allred?

Kris Krane: Yes.

Seth Adler: We should probably focus on now does this actually mean anything because if we will allow votes, we actually have to have those votes?

Kris Krane: Interestingly, we don't even have to have those votes. This is where things get really interesting with the Democrats in control of the House. Congress doesn't vote on bills anymore, right? They don't vote on any stand-alone legislation, so I think the thought that the STATES Act is going to pass both houses is a fantasy. The STATES Act is probably not even going to pass the House.

Seth Adler: There you go. You heard it.

Kris Krane: Because it's not going to get a vote.

Seth Adler: There you go.

Kris Krane: Right. Congress just does not vote on stand-alone bills, period, doesn't matter if it's marijuana or anything else unless it's a memorial to somebody that everyone loves, right?

Seth Adler: Or a Post Office.

Kris Krane: Yeah, right, they might ... Some memorial for Anthony Bourdain or something like that, right? Everyone can agree ... I mean they logged it. That's about all that they vote on that are stand-alone these days that almost everyone can agree on.

Seth Adler: Anthony Bourdain's such an interesting choice, but go on.

Kris Krane: Yeah, not just [inaudible 00:04:23]. I'm trying to think of somebody who died recently that-

Seth Adler: Yeah, yeah, yeah, who people generally like.

Kris Krane: That people generally like, right.

Seth Adler: Yeah, right.

Kris Krane: Non-political.

Seth Adler: Indeed.

Kris Krane: Right, something along those lines, right? That might pass, but stand-alone bills ... although Congress in really inept at doing their jobs, and so everything gets passed through these giant omnibus spending bills, and that's how legislation is done, really, over the last ... has been done over the last decade or so.

Seth Adler: Yeah. Crazy, right?

Kris Krane: Yeah. I mean, really, going back to the beginning of the Obama administration. Well, really, since the Republicans took power under Obama, it's been that way ever since.

Seth Adler: Right, right, 2010. Yeah, yeah.

Kris Krane: 2010-ish. Even, frankly, it started a little bit under the Bush administration as well, and it just ... it's taken off from there. The vehicle to get these things passed, particularly if we're looking at the more incremental reforms, which are the most likely, 280E reform, banking reform, allowing something like the STATES Act, the vehicle for those will likely be a larger bill than just the stand-alone.
Now, in the past, the way that we've done this is the bill gets introduced, right, treasury reauthorization, criminal justice reauthorization, whatever bill it is, or just the giant omnibus that covers everything, we get a vote on an amendment to that bill. That's how the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment has passed. Even when it was Hinchey-Rohrabacher, right, it was always an amendment to that bill. You had to get the amendment voted on in both houses. If you got it passed in one, goes to conference committee.

Seth Adler: Now Rohrabacher-Blumenauer and, I would imagine, Blumenauer-Blank, you know?

Kris Krane: Right. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, probably Joyce would be my guess, Blumenauer-Joyce now.

Seth Adler: Joyce, yeah. That's right, David Joyce, sure.

Kris Krane: Yeah, he's probably our best Republican now in the House.

Seth Adler: Well, Gates, not bad.

Kris Krane: Gates, not bad, yeah, but we lost. We lost Rohrabacher. We lost Curbelo.

Seth Adler: Curbelo. It's crazy to me that he lost.

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Seth Adler: That's the kind of the wave that you're talking about because if there is a center, Carlos Curbelo is at least near it. Does that make sense?

Kris Krane: Yes, absolutely, but he was pretty far right on immigration. I think that's what did him in. Plus, he just ... he got caught up in the wave, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: He was in something like an R-plus-five-type district. All things being equal, it's about five points leaning Republican. The Democrats won the House nationally about somewhere between seven and eight points, so all those Republicans in the R-plus-four, R-plus-five districts, they mostly lost.

Seth Adler: Amendments, that's how things happen.

Kris Krane: That's how things have happened. Now, the good thing in, in the House, actually in both chambers, but we only care about the House now, all right?

Seth Adler: Right, yeah. Well, you can care about the House, sadly.

Kris Krane: Right.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: The Democratic party chairmen now get to write the authorization bills in the first place, so we don't necessarily have to have this done through an amendment. It can just be written in the original bill. We can have something like the Rohrabacher amendment just written in the original text of the legislation. We can have 280E, banking. All that can just be written into the original bill without having to go through any kind of vote in committee. Now, if we do have to go through a vote, chances are, we have the votes, which is great, either on the committee or on the floor, but my hope is that we don't even have to do that. It just gets written into the bills.
Now the question will be the Senate, right? The Senate will likely not do any of that. They will likely not vote on the amendments. They will likely not include it in the bills, so this is really going to come down to conference committees. That's where, when you pass two bills, you got to reconcile the differences between the bills. Each party in both houses appoints a certain number of people. They get together, and they figure out what they're okay with, what they're not. That's where the horse trading happens.

Seth Adler: Sure, right.

Kris Krane: I'm actually optimistic. I'm cautiously optimistic on our ability to get stuff done in conference committee, and the reason being, without getting too in the weeds on it, right, the reason being I don't think Mitch McConnell cares at all about this issue.

Seth Adler: Really? Well, we know he cares about hemp, but what he-

Kris Krane: He cares about hemp.

Seth Adler: Yeah, sure. You really don't think he cares?

Kris Krane: I don't think he cares one way or another. I think he will do whatever is politically expedient. I do not think that he cares one bit about marijuana either way.

Seth Adler: I can see that, yeah.

Kris Krane: He's not a reformer. I don't think he's an arch prohibitionist. He says he's a prohibitionist, but he's never actually done much. I just done think he cares. Now, he says all the right things for the prohibitionists, but when it comes down to it, Mitch McConnell cares about a lot of things. This is not on the list, and so when it comes to the horse trading, if Senate Republicans feel like, "Well, look, we can give in on this marijuana banking issue or this marijuana tax issue, and we're going to get something that puts more money in the pockets of our rich donors ..."

Seth Adler: "We'll take it."

Kris Krane: They're going to do that, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: This is not something I think that they're going to hold the line over. There's going to be other things that they care a lot more about in these bills.

Seth Adler: That makes sense.

Kris Krane: So I'm optimistic. Now, what it comes down to, though, is who gets appointed to as the conferees. That's really important, and that, we'll have no idea.

Seth Adler: Because Chuck Grassley is definitely anti, is definitely ... Yeah.

Kris Krane: Chuck Grassley is firmly anti-marijuana, so if Chuck Grassley is a conferee, he might try and hold the line on this, right?

Seth Adler: Right, right.

Kris Krane: I don't know if Mitch ... Because Mitch McConnell doesn't care that much either way, he's probably not going to use political capital on one of his own members on this issue.

Seth Adler: Right, exactly.

Kris Krane: Who those conferees are becomes ...

Seth Adler: Hugely important.

Kris Krane: It's key. It becomes the most important decision when it comes to getting marijuana reform passed this year because, if we get it passed, it's going to be just in the House, and we got to get this thing done through conference committees, but it's better than last year, right, the last few years?

Seth Adler: Oh, my God, yeah.

Kris Krane: This was not a conversation, right?

Seth Adler: At all.

Kris Krane: There were no conference committees, so we're ...

Seth Adler: Right, yeah.

Kris Krane: Had the Democrats taken the Senate, it'd be a little bit different, but we all knew that was very unlikely to happen, but the reality is we now have a chamber that's going to pass meaningful reform. We have a president who said that he would sign meaningful reform. Frankly, it doesn't really matter because, remember, if you do this through a gigantic spending bill, the president's not going to veto a giant spending bill that's been agreed to by both parties in conference committee because of some little marijuana provision.

Seth Adler: Definitely not. Definitely not.

Kris Krane: Right? So it almost doesn't matter.

Seth Adler: Right.

Kris Krane: It's not like we're sending a marijuana bill to the president's desk.

Seth Adler: He might do that on something like DACA.

Kris Krane: Right, or the wall, right? Yeah.

Seth Adler: Right, yeah.

Kris Krane: If in the budget [crosstalk 00:09:40]-

Seth Adler: But it's not going to be this.

Kris Krane: Yes, it's not this. No. He's not going to veto a bill over this.

Seth Adler: Here's one of the reasons that I love Kris Krane, because you and I have been talking for about 10 minutes.

Kris Krane: All right.

Seth Adler: This is not what you do every day.

Kris Krane: It's not what I do every day, no, no.

Seth Adler: No. You're the CEO of a company.

Kris Krane: I'm the president of the company.

Seth Adler: Excuse me.

Kris Krane: My partner, Josh Rosen, our CEO, he does all the hard work.

Seth Adler: Excuse me.

Kris Krane: I get to come out and hang out with guys like you and do the fun stuff.

Seth Adler: Fair enough. Fair enough, but you're, I mean, a busy guy, right?

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah.

Seth Adler: Podcast land knows no time. Who knows if you run a public company or not?

Kris Krane: I don't yet.

Seth Adler: But I'm saying podcast land knows no time.

Kris Krane: That's right.

Seth Adler: By the time people hear this, you might.

Kris Krane: We might.

Seth Adler: Who knows?

Kris Krane: We might, yeah.

Seth Adler: Anything could happen.

Kris Krane: We're working towards it. That's not private news.

Seth Adler: What the heck are we talking about, right? Colorado and California are great states.

Kris Krane: Wonderful states.

Seth Adler: Let's talk about four other states.

Kris Krane: Don't do any business in those states.

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: Great states, though. I love them.

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: I lived in Oakland for a while. I have a very good fondness for the Bay Area, and California is a wonderful state.

Seth Adler: Well, 4Front ... the name 4Front basically comes out of the Bay Area. The whole thing, yeah.

Kris Krane: Our whole concept originally came out of the Bay Area. That's right.

Seth Adler: There we go.

Kris Krane: I mainly owe everything to and everything I learned and the opportunities I had with Steve DeAngelo in Harborside, and I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for the DeAngelos and those early pioneers in northern California.

Seth Adler: Just search Kris Krane in the thing there, and then you'll hear all those conversations.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right. Yeah.

Seth Adler: Because we've talked about that.

Kris Krane: Search with a K, for those of you who don't know.

Seth Adler: Yeah, they're both K's. He's Kris Krane.

Kris Krane: Yeah, it's both Ks. Yeah, two Ks. Yeah.

Seth Adler: You're one of the reasons why my girlfriend doesn't believe the people's names in this industry. She said-

Kris Krane: Think it's my stage name?

Seth Adler: Yeah. I'm like, "Kris Krane," and she's like, "Okay," and then I show her, and she's like, "Okay, yeah, but why can't it be C-H?"

Kris Krane: Why can't it be C-H? Because my parents were both Jewish who, for some reason, really liked the name Christopher, and so they used the K so it would be a little less Christ-like.

Seth Adler: Yeah, because C-H-R-I-

Kris Krane: See? Natural answer. Yeah.

Seth Adler: C-H-R-I-S. You know where that goes.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right, yeah. Yeah. They didn't want to set me up for a lifetime of being mistaken for the messiah because we have a lot of similar looks.

Seth Adler: Sure. Well, I mean ...

Kris Krane: That sure doesn't [inaudible 00:11:43] on podcasts, so-

Seth Adler: No. Well, right, because no one knows what you look like, but people in the know know what you look like.

Kris Krane: You can Google it, yeah.

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah. I'm out there.

Seth Adler: It's close enough to the ... He's [inaudible 00:11:53] looking a little bit, little bit. For the four states, let's go through them. What's been happening? What's the real deal?

Kris Krane: Those where we're working?

Seth Adler: Yes.

Kris Krane: Sure. We're currently operational in Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, so a heavy focus on the eastern half of the US. We actually got a few things percolating right now that should tuck in a couple more states on that list by ... probably by the end of this year but, for now, those are the four where we are currently operating.

Seth Adler: Why are people speaking of Illinois as though it's a different state from the Illinois that we used to speak of?

Kris Krane: Because of what happened in November.

Seth Adler: Let's discuss.

Kris Krane: Illinois has had a pretty terrible medical marijuana program to date. It's very restrictive. The qualifying condition list has been very restrictive. There are a lot of barriers to someone becoming a patient. It's been, up until just a month or two ago, that was the only state where, if you had a criminal record, you could not become a patient. You had to go through a background check. You had to put your fingerprints on file with the state. As you can imagine, in communities of color and communities that have been disproportionately targeted for marijuana enforcement, that was a huge impediment.

Seth Adler: That's a hell, no is what that is.

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah. It was a huge impediment to people signing up to become patients. It's been a pretty terrible program to date, and that's largely been because of Bruce Rauner, the current governor of Illinois, still the governor for now. He just lost reelection to J.B. Pritzker of the famed Pritzker family. I think he's going to be the richest governor in the country. He's worth something like $3.5 billion dollars.

Seth Adler: Sure.

Kris Krane: Or so I hear [crosstalk 00:13:26]-

Seth Adler: Yeah. Well, we like our politicians to be billionaires now. That's what we're doing.

Kris Krane: Apparently. Apparently, that's how it works, yeah.

Seth Adler: That's what we're doing these days.

Kris Krane: You want to be elected to higher office, go get $1 billion, and you too can do what you want. J.B. is a big supporter of legalization. He campaigned on it. He held a press conference outside of one of the dispensaries in Chicago to call for full legalization. In his acceptance speech, he said he wants to get it done in the first few months of his administration.

Seth Adler: Fantastic.

Kris Krane: This nice thing is, in Illinois, you've got a legislature that's ready for it. You have a Democratic-controlled House and Senate who have wanted to pass legalization for the past few years that have just been waiting out Rauner. The senator Heather Steans, I've met with her on a number of occasions now on this issue. She's very dedicated to it. She's also a very powerful state senator, so she's not some back-bencher who wants to get this done. The Steans family is a very well-known family in Illinois. They raise a lot of money from Democrats, and she has a lot of power in that chamber. Then there's actually a full-time staff member working just on legalization.

Seth Adler: Just on this.

Kris Krane: Just on legalization, yep, yep. She works for both Steans and Cassidy, the House member who's sponsoring the House companion legislation. We think there's a real change that full legalization passes this year, the first half of this year before the session ends.

Seth Adler: You mean 2019 when you say, "This year."

Kris Krane: Yeah, sorry.

Seth Adler: Yeah. I just wanted to make sure.

Kris Krane: Once the election's over-

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: Yeah, it's the next year.

Seth Adler: You keep on saying, "What happened in November," and I'm like, "It's November when we're talking."

Kris Krane: It's still November.

Seth Adler: Yeah, but podcast land knows no time.

Kris Krane: Yes. When you live in political time, the year ends the first week in November.

Seth Adler: That's it.

Kris Krane: Yeah, so 2019.

Seth Adler: It's only fair.

Kris Krane: We think there's a good chance this passes first half of 2019 in Illinois, and they'll expand the medical program in the meantime, which is great. I mean the courts have called for the administration to add chronic pain, and they've continued to refuse to do so and keep appealing it, and so I think the new administration will likely drop that appeal, which means chronic pain gets added quickly. They can add more licenses if they want to just administratively. I think there will be expansion of medical and legalization on the horizon. It's a really exciting state.

Seth Adler: Literally complete ... It's a 180.

Kris Krane: It is, and I just moved there, so I'll get to ... I [crosstalk 00:15:25]-

Seth Adler: There's even that.

Kris Krane: Yeah. We legalized marijuana in Massachusetts. That campaign was run out of my office in Mass. Now that it's legal, I needed a challenge, so I figure let's go to another state where I can be motivated by being a criminal again and-

Seth Adler: We need you to move again soon.

Kris Krane: ... go legalize marijuana. If it happens too quickly, I might need go to move to ... I don't know. I might go to-

Seth Adler: Texas.

Kris Krane: There's got to be somewhere I can go other than Texas that it's not legal yet.

Seth Adler: Just think of big states. That's all I'm saying.

Kris Krane: Yeah, it's a big state. That'd be a big lift, maybe Iowa or something.

Seth Adler: That's fair. Right.

Kris Krane: I mean Wisconsin, they're going to need it. Yeah.

Seth Adler: Wisconsin, sure.

Kris Krane: Yeah. [crosstalk 00:15:55] there.

Seth Adler: How does the saying go? Round on the sides, high in the middle? Ohio.

Kris Krane: I don't know that one. Ohio. Well, Ohio in 2020.

Seth Adler: All right.

Kris Krane: Ohio I'm very confident will have a ballot initiative in 2020.

Seth Adler: What are you guys doing in Ohio?

Kris Krane: Right now, nothing.

Seth Adler: Well, then what are the four states? Let's make sure we will list them again.

Kris Krane: Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

Seth Adler: Why did I think Ohio?

Kris Krane: No, we're not active in Ohio, not yet, not yet.

Seth Adler: Right. Massachusetts was funky, and then now it's kind of-

Kris Krane: Still is, yeah.

Seth Adler: It is still.

Kris Krane: Yeah. There's still not a single recreational store open in Massachusetts.

Seth Adler: Let's talk about it. What's the deal?

Kris Krane: Bureaucracy in Massachusetts moves really, really, really slowly.

Seth Adler: What's the deal there, seriously? I mean it's ... You know.

Kris Krane: First, the legislature came in after the initiative was passed, and they said, "We need to have a six-month extension," and then they rewrote the law. Thankfully, they actually ... In many ways, they improved the law that was passed. There were a lot of things we wanted to do when we wrote the ballot initiative that we weren't allowed to because of some quirks in Massachusetts election law that the legislature did fix, so that was nice. They made some changes we didn't love but, by and large, I actually think they made it better.

Seth Adler: Fine.

Kris Krane: Which is very rare, but it did cause to ... it caused a long delay, and then they had to establish a new agency, which was one of the things they changed which I didn't love. It was supposed to be within the Treasury Department so you could deal with an existing infrastructure. They created an entirely new-

Seth Adler: We got a pretty good commissioner on there, though, yeah. Yeah.

Kris Krane: We have a phenomenal commissioner on there, yes. That's the upside. We got a terrific commissioner, although there were going to be commissioners even if was in Treasury. They just made it an independent agency, which meant that had to be staffed up, and so that caused more delay, but we got Shaleen Title on the commission, which is phenomenal.

Seth Adler: There we go.

Kris Krane: Shaleen, she's been on the show, some of your listeners are familiar.

Seth Adler: Sure.

Kris Krane: She's a long-time advocate, came out of the SSDP network. She worked with us, worked for us at 4Front for a while here, worked with Vincente Sederberg. She was a staff [crosstalk 00:17:33] ... Yes.

Seth Adler: Sure. Yeah, obviously had some time in Colorado at the right time.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes. She worked on the 64 campaign, so Shaleen is ... she's experienced. She's one of the five commissioners in charge of the program.

Seth Adler: There we go.

Kris Krane: It's just been a really slow roll-out, and part of the problem is they give a lot of deference to the state. No, sorry, [inaudible 00:17:48] to the state, to the local municipalities, and they require that you have these host community agreements with the municipalities as part of the app process, which has allowed these towns and ties to de facto ban or limit the number of licenses or to drag out negotiations for months and months and months. City of Boston, for example, has not granted a single host community agreement yet. They've got something like 20 pending applications, and they haven't even announced if they have a process yet to grant those.

Seth Adler: I know you don't like talking about California.

Kris Krane: I like California.

Seth Adler: Isn't it-

Kris Krane: I do like California.

Seth Adler: You don't like doing business in California.

Kris Krane: That's true.

Seth Adler: Isn't this the same issue in California or at least a similar issue?

Kris Krane: Similar, yes, yes.

Seth Adler: I'm now a state's rights guy, of course. Aren't we all? I appreciate the thinking that goes into it. I appreciate that approach, but it ... What is missing from this approach? How could we make things go a little bit easier, a little bit better while ensuring that each territory has its own ... each fiefdom has its own decision making?

Kris Krane: I mean I don't think that you need to ensure that each fiefdom has its own ... at least at the local level. It's kind of silly. Yes, let the state set up different regulatory structures. We have that for alcohol. That's fine. I think we give way too much deference to the local municipalities. It's hard. I get it from a state legislator's perspective where they all came from these municipalities, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah, right.

Kris Krane: Most of them were city council members or-

Seth Adler: Yeah, exactly.

Kris Krane: ... commissioners first, and so I get that they have that deference, but it really creates needless delays. You deal with NIMBYism, not in my back yard, at the local level way more than you do at the state level.

Seth Adler: Of course.

Kris Krane: You can have a town that voted for marijuana reform, voted for Question Four in Massachusetts but who just don't want it in their town, and then, all of a sudden, you got the pitchforks and torches coming out at use permit hearings and-

Seth Adler: Yeah. A yes ... a vote becomes a no vote. Those flip-floppers. Remember flip-floppers?

Kris Krane: I remember flip-floppers, I do, I do, in 2004 election. That's right. [inaudible 00:19:40], will never forget that.

Seth Adler: Such quaint times.

Kris Krane: I would actually look to right here, right where we're sitting in Nevada. I would look at Nevada, and I would look at Oregon as the examples of how to implement rec off of a medical model first, which is to say, "Look, by a date certain, you're already licensed. You're already producing. You're already selling. You already have the infrastructure. You've already been vetted by the state. Come a certain date, flip the switch. You can now start selling for adult use."

Seth Adler: "You're rec now."

Kris Krane: Right, yeah. "Here, now you're both. Now you're both."

Seth Adler: Oregon did that first.

Kris Krane: Oregon did it first, yeah.

Seth Adler: I was shocked when that happened.

Kris Krane: It's so easy. It's so simple and so common sense, right? They did it here in Nevada, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah, yeah.

Kris Krane: They started selling adult-use sales July 1, 2017, six months after the ballot initiative passed. Here we are, mid-November 2018, Massachusetts passed the same day in November of 2016 that Nevada passed, and we still don't have a single adult-use store open. Now, that'll change in the next couple of weeks. The first two stores should be opening here in the next week or two from everything that the state's saying and what the stores have been saying. They have all their approvals. They're ready to go. I think they're just waiting on having enough tested product in to start selling, so we should start seeing real sales. Then there will be a trickle of them moving on from here forward.

Seth Adler: The thaw is upon us.

Kris Krane: The thaw is just starting, yes. We're going to see it. NETA will likely be the first one to pop through the thaw at first, I don't know what it would be, with the little ... the nose of the little polar bear coming out at the end of the winter there.

Seth Adler: Sure, a little green shoot or whatever.

Kris Krane: Yes, exactly.

Seth Adler: Yeah, choose your analogy.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes, yes. That's right.

Seth Adler: Let's go to Pennsylvania.

Kris Krane: All right. Let's do Pennsylvania.

Seth Adler: What are we doing in Pennsylvania?

Kris Krane: We opened our first store in Pennsylvania in Allentown, PA about six months ago.

Seth Adler: Billy Joel fans, rejoice.

Kris Krane: Billy Joel fans, rejoice. Yeah, that's right. That's right. Well, he is a Long Island guy.

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: It's a good, good song about Allentown.

Seth Adler: I have a very difficult relationship with Billy Joel. I am not a fan.

Kris Krane: You're not?

Seth Adler: No, but everybody that I know from my childhood loves him. Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah. I'm a Jew from Queens, so I-

Seth Adler: Yeah, you love him.

Kris Krane: I don't say I love him, but I got a soft spot for him.

Seth Adler: I don't, man.

Kris Krane: I grew up around-

Seth Adler: Too saccharin, too saccharin. Although, right after 9/11, that 9/11 concert, New York State of Mind, I'm in on that.

Kris Krane: I can do that. I'm a sucker for Piano Man. I will say that [crosstalk 00:21:47].

Seth Adler: No, no, yeah, or nothing else. Just New York State of Mind as a New Yorker.

Kris Krane: Okay, but Piano Man's a good song. I'm also a Mets fan, and they play that at the eighth inning every game.

Seth Adler: I tell you, it's ... Yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah.

Seth Adler: By the way, it's between the top of the seventh and the bottom of the seventh, wouldn't it be? Wouldn't it be the seventh inning stretch?

Kris Krane: No, no, no, not the seventh inning stretch. No, no, no, no. They do it in the eighth like they do in Boston with Sweet Caroline. They do Piano Man at City Field.

Seth Adler: That's how long it's been since I've been to a Met game, and I'm a Met fan.

Kris Krane: Yeah, they've been doing that for like ... Yeah, there you go. All right, so now you're going to have to like Piano Man because you could get up with all your brethren and sing.

Seth Adler: Anyway, Allentown.

Kris Krane: Allentown, yeah. Allentown, that was where we opened the first manifestation of our vision of the Mission brand. That's our retail brand.

Seth Adler: Here we go.

Kris Krane: Yeah. Our first Mission store opened in Chicago, but it was before we had gone through the full branding process and then figured out what our full look and feel is, so we've gone back, and now we're still in the process of revamping that store to give it the same feel. Allentown was the first fully fleshed out version of the Mission-branded store, and I mean I'm pleased to say it's doing extremely well. I mean we grow about 10 to 15% just about week after week, and we have been consistently for six months.

Seth Adler: Week after week, 10 to ... That's-

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah. I know. The growth has been wild to watch.

Seth Adler: I usually don't do branding exercises with guests.

Kris Krane: Sure.

Seth Adler: Because I want to talk about the real stuff, and it's not really about promotion. Having said that, SSDP Kris Krane named something Mission, and I wonder why.

Kris Krane: Well, because we wanted to show that we're a mission-driven company, right? We're about more than just selling cannabis. We're about selling cannabis the right way. We're about building the right culture. This is something I'm really proud of the store, and I don't say this in a self-promotion type of way, but we have placed a lot of emphasis on building a scalable culture at the store, so it's not just about having a beautiful aesthetic, which I think we do. I think these stores are really, really nice, and really high-end.

Seth Adler: Great. Wonderful.

Kris Krane: It's the culture that they have in there. Everybody in our stores, they really feel like they're family. When people walk in, they feel like they're walking into a family environment.

Seth Adler: Also great.

Kris Krane: Yeah.

Seth Adler: What are we doing with ... do we call them bud tenders?

Kris Krane: We don't.

Seth Adler: What do we call them?

Kris Krane: In the medical states, they're patient consultants. In the adult-use states, they're sales consultants.

Seth Adler: Okay, so these consultants, how much do they know? Do they target like-minded, seemingly, consumers? How do we go about having the real conversation of what cannabis is to people that don't know what it is?

Kris Krane: Our staff are incredibly well-trained. We have a week-long training program that we take everybody through that trains them not only on how they operate their department, how they operate their portion of the store, but there's a heavy emphasis on culture building, on understanding the product, on understanding how to talk to people about the product. We're extremely picky about who and how we hire, so we say everybody has to be happy, humble, and hard-working.

Seth Adler: Oh, good. Those are, all three, good. I like that.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes. If they don't check all three boxes, they don't get past that first interview, and they need to-

Seth Adler: It's only a couple of weeks of training. Is there continuing education that goes on?

Kris Krane: Oh, yes. There's ongoing training, yes.

Seth Adler: All right.

Kris Krane: There's ongoing training, constant, constant. We're constantly doing webinars and seminars, and we've got a call center that we set up that, if anyone calls one of our stores, they go to a central call center, and those people are not just trained on to tell them where the stores are and what the hours are, but they're actually trained to have consultations with patients and customers over the phone.

Seth Adler: Good.

Kris Krane: That's been a huge referral source for us. It breeds really good brand loyalty. The thing that encompasses this well to me is, when we look at where our patients in Allentown are coming from, they're routinely coming from about an hour radius around Allentown. A lot of them are coming from northern Philadelphia and the north Philly suburbs. They're driving 45 minutes to an hour ...

Seth Adler: To get there.

Kris Krane: When they have 12 stores that are closer to them than-

Seth Adler: Oh, wow.

Kris Krane: ... driving all the way up to Allentown in a market where there's only 10 or so producers in the whole state, so everyone has the same products for the same prices.

Seth Adler: Nice.

Kris Krane: Yet they're coming here because of the people that we have in those stores.

Seth Adler: My 73-year-old father walks in. Maybe, in 1967, something happened, but he doesn't remember.

Kris Krane: Sure, sure.

Seth Adler: What conversation do we have with him?

Kris Krane: Our sales team will pull him aside. They'll talk with him about ... We want to find out why he's there, what he's looking for relief from, right? What condition does he have? What's he looking to get relief from? When does he use it? What time of day does he use it? Is he familiar at all with the products? Has he thought about CBD? We really, based on all of those inputs that we get from the patient, we try and make recommendations on the product that we think would be most effective for them. Then we ask them to takes notes on it, if they can, to give us the feedback so that, if they didn't love something as much as we thought they might, that we ask them why not, and then we try and gear them to another product.
One of the interesting trends that we've seen with this has been ... Pennsylvania was a state that started with no flower sales, so when we opened last spring, we opened with no flower.

Seth Adler: Yeah. Diane Savino just walked by, state senator from New York.

Kris Krane: Oh, yeah, yeah. There you go.

Seth Adler: Also with no flowers.

Kris Krane: That's right, no flowers still in New York.

Seth Adler: That means I'm just dovetailing that ... Yeah.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right, and so Pennsylvania opened with one, and then they changed the rules to allow for non-smokable flower for whatever that means. It basically means we can't seel pre-rolls, but now we can sell flower as long as you say, "Don't smoke this," and we sell vaporizers, and so now we can sell non-smokable flower, but the interesting thing has been, once we added flower, we assumed ... because you're still dealing with a less-educated market in Pennsylvania, right? They're not used to the concentrated products the way that folks are out West. We assumed that flower would, like we've seen in other new markets that we've launched, and flower would just, all of a sudden, dominate sales, right? We opened in Maryland a couple weeks ago, and flower's still 80, 90% of sales.

Seth Adler: Right, because that's what people know.

Kris Krane: Because that's what people know, but the interesting thing was, because we were open for three or four months with no flower sales, flower has only been our top seller, I believe, for one week in the three or four months since we started selling flower. Cartridges still outsell flower. About 35 to 38% of our sales, on a given day, are cartridges, about 30% are flower, and the rest is everything else.

Seth Adler: Do you think that's because you've got a nice install base, and there's good loyalty and they already know what products they want, and that's fine?

Kris Krane: I think that's large part of it. We've seen this in most other markets, right, not just in our stores, but all over the country. Once patients or customers come into the door, even though they're used ... they may be used to flower, and that's what they want to begin with. Once they've been introduced to these other products, they gravitate towards those other products, and so we've seen sales in California and Colorado go from, five, six, seven years ago, being 80% flower to now being more like 30 to 40% flower, and those cartridge sales and other sales are much higher, but it takes a while to transition folks that way.
When we started out without flower and the first thing that people had their exposure to were these other products, they didn't switch back. They stayed, and then the new people who are coming in are gravitating more towards those products. I think part of it, too, is we have a bit of an older customer base. I mean our average patient skews somewhere in their late 30s, early 40s. They're generally not as interested in smoking anything, and so these products are a lot more appealing to that customer base.

Seth Adler: We hit on Maryland, so I won't go back to there, but what are your thoughts on now a differently educated consumer as we go into the next couple few years here? Whether we've got federal legalization or not, who wants to prognosticate? Actually, do you want to prognosticate?

Kris Krane: On federal legalization?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: I can, sure. Why not. We're having fun here.

Seth Adler: You could just give me a year.

Kris Krane: On the federal side, I think we are going to see some kind of meaningful reform in the next two years. I wrote a column for Forbes about this earlier this year about the fact that I think that the Trump administration is going to take some sort of unilateral action on legalization. Now, I don't know if this means full legalization. It probably doesn't, but I think it means some sort of real reform, and I think the president is going to do this because he wants to deny the Democrats a win on something that is popular amongst a base that he needs if he wants to have a chance at getting reelected in 2020.

Seth Adler: Okay. I see.

Kris Krane: Yeah.

Seth Adler: Oh, wow. I see what you're saying. Okay.

Kris Krane: Yeah. I mean I think, look, if you look at the potential Democratic field in 2020, they're all there on legalization to some degree, right?

Seth Adler: Oh, 100%, yeah.

Kris Krane: Even the bad ones, even the Cuomos and the Bidens, right-

Seth Adler: Yep, right. Yep, they're fine.

Kris Krane: ... who have traditionally been bad on this issue.

Seth Adler: "Fine, I'll come along with you."

Kris Krane: Yeah, they're pretty much there now, right?

Seth Adler: Exactly, yeah.

Kris Krane: Or no, all the way to Bernie and Elizabeth Warren.

Seth Adler: Sure.

Kris Krane: Even Kamala Harris has come around.

Seth Adler: Now, right.

Kris Krane: And Cory Booker has been great on this, right?

Seth Adler: Yep. I mean 100% in his states, yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah. You are almost certainly going to have a Democratic nominee that's going to be there on legalization.

Seth Adler: He's going to beat them on that.

Kris Krane: I think he wants to beat them on it. I think he wants to neutralize it as a political issue.

Seth Adler: Oh, wow.

Kris Krane: My guess would be-

Seth Adler: What a great thought, Kris.

Kris Krane: I mean, look, my guess would be if it looks like Congress is going to pass something meaningful, my guess is that we see some sort of executive action.

Seth Adler: Before that.

Kris Krane: Before it passes, before it gets to his desk so that he can say, "I did this. I am the legalization president. I am in favor of reform," and it becomes a neutral issue then in the presidential election, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah, right.

Kris Krane: This is the Democrats' fault. This is entirely the Democrats' fault.

Seth Adler: Where were you for the last eight years?

Kris Krane: Exactly, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: Hillary Clinton, that was the perfect time for the Democrats to say, "I'm for legalization." It probably would have won her enough votes to flip a couple of those states that she lost because-

Seth Adler: Yeah or, "Why didn't we listen to Jim Cole who told us, 'It would be better if you guys in the legislature acted'?"

Kris Krane: Exactly, exactly.

Seth Adler: There were two years there at the beginning that you had the opportunity to do so.

Kris Krane: They had the opportunity to do it, and the Democrats were ... they just-

Seth Adler: Nowhere to be found.

Kris Krane: No. They were all, "Yeah, I'm for medical, but let's see on legal ... I'm okay. Let's let the states do their thing," and-

Seth Adler: Well, that's even when we were still kind of not even fully there on marriage equality all the way back then.

Kris Krane: That's right. That's right. That's right.

Seth Adler: You know? Come on.

Kris Krane: They've had every opportunity to own this issue and the political spoils that come with it, and they lost it, and now Trump has the bully pulpit. If he wants to do this, the Democrats can't own the issue. Trump can own the issue, and I think, if you're looking at the electoral map, right, medical marijuana is legal in Florida. Medical marijuana is legal in Ohio. Ohio will almost certainly have a legalization initiative on the ballot in 2020, major swing state, right? It's likely going to be on the ballot in Arizona, now a real swing state. Colorado, real swing state, hugely popular. Trump needs to win all these states.

Seth Adler: You have changed my mind completely.

Kris Krane: Yeah. I mean, look, I'm not saying this is something that Trump cares about.

Seth Adler: No, I got you.

Kris Krane: I mean, actually, from what I hear, he doesn't care one way or another.

Seth Adler: Right, he [crosstalk 00:31:42]-

Kris Krane: He's not anti-marijuana.

Seth Adler: No.

Kris Krane: He's not pro. He just does not care at all.

Seth Adler: No, doesn't care. It's not on the list.

Kris Krane: Right, right. He doesn't use any substances. He doesn't drink. Look, he doesn't drink, but he sells Trump vodka and Trump wines and Trump ... He has no problem selling booze.

Seth Adler: He has no problem selling anything. It doesn't matter.

Kris Krane: Right, right. I'm sure he would sell Trump marijuana if he could.

Seth Adler: If he could, why not?

Kris Krane: If he thought it could make him money by licensing his name to marijuana ... Let's see. If he loses in 2020, 2021 you might see Trump-branded cannabis in a dispensary at the Trump casino here or Trump hotel here in Vegas.

Seth Adler: I think they don't have a casino because it's got a weird-

Kris Krane: They don't have a casino. You're right.

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: I know. I'm ashamed to admit, but I've actually stayed at that hotel.

Seth Adler: Oh, really?

Kris Krane: Yes, yes.

Seth Adler: That's such an interesting thing.

Kris Krane: I have, I have. I didn't know I was buying it when I ... I did Hotwire, and it was like, "Oh, five-star hotel on the Strip."

Seth Adler: I see.

Kris Krane: Then it came up with the Trump. This was before he was a politician.

Seth Adler: I got you. This was when he was just whatever he was.

Kris Krane: Yeah. No, the rooms were gold-plated everything.

Seth Adler: Must make you feel so good.

Kris Krane: It felt weird, yeah, yeah, yeah. I don't know if good's the right word, but it ... Good.

Seth Adler: I interrupted us with all that when I was asking you about a differently educated consumer. As we go into the next couple of years here, we've got a whole bunch of states, and we've got a whole new reality. Are we where we need to be on the education to consumers, and are we where we need to be on the education of this industry? Does this industry ... is it educated to the plant as it should be? We're here at MJBizCon. That's one. We'll say that. There's, what, 22,000, 24,000 people?

Kris Krane: I think [crosstalk 00:33:11]. I think you're north of 30 at this one.

Seth Adler: 27 whatever, exactly, with walk-ups.

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah. They were at 22 before the walk-ups were here.

Seth Adler: Do we have the right level of intellect about this plant in the industry?

Kris Krane: No, but I mean I don't think anybody really does. We're still learning so much about the plant.

Seth Adler: Okay.

Kris Krane: All right? I mean we just discovered the THC and CBD receptors [inaudible 00:33:29] within the last 30 years, some of them more recently. We're still learning a lot about the plant, about what it does, about its compounds, but there's so much more attention being paid to it now. There are more companies. There are more researchers. There's so much more data out there that ... Are we as educated as we should be? No, but it don't think it's possible to be at this point, but I think we're making great strides, and I think, with more reform, with more legislative reform, with federal reforms, I think we're only going to continue to get better.

Seth Adler: As you know, I like to call it corporate media, all the stories are positive.

Kris Krane: Virtually all, yeah. Yeah, yeah, that's right.

Seth Adler: What happens when that stops?

Kris Krane: I don't know. Is it going to stop? I mean the media stories are great. Look, it'll stop when the financial bubble bursts, and we've seen that over the last week or so, right? Those prices have come down quite a bit, but I think we'll see another ... I don't think we're seeing the bubble bursting right now. I think we're seeing a little bit of a deflation. I think other events are going to cause them to go back up.

Seth Adler: Correction, yeah.

Kris Krane: Yeah. I think we'll see more increases as well before we see any kind of real burst.

Seth Adler: What would you-

Kris Krane: Yeah, there'll be some negative stories around that at some point. Some of these companies will fail. Some of these companies will do things that they're ... bad boy act, so to speak, right? They should be doing that'll wind up causing some negative stories. It's bound to happen.

Seth Adler: I just wonder how much actual information is out there about the plant? All these people have been writing really positive stories. They're going to have to come back around, and I'm worried about that.

Kris Krane: I worry a little bit but not too much. This is a positive plant. It's positive industry. It's positive movement. We're not going to bat 1,000, right? We're not going to win everything. We're not going to have all positive stories but, by and large, I think we can weather some negative stories and some negativity.

Seth Adler: Fair enough. Fair enough. That educated consumer, if you're talking to your brothers and sisters in the space, what advice would you give them about how we can make sure that that consumer is as educated as possible?

Kris Krane: To really pay attention to how you train your staff, right, the people that actually interact with the consumer. This is more for the retail operators than anyone, but the product manufacturers as well.

Seth Adler: The packaging.

Kris Krane: Yes, exactly. Have packaging that helps educate your customer base, right? Have a staff that's really well trained on what it is they're selling, that are not just trained to upsell, to try and sell the most expensive thing on the bar that day but to really-

Seth Adler: That will do you no good.

Kris Krane: It won't do you good.

Seth Adler: In 99% of your sales.

Kris Krane: You will breed so much more brand loyalty if you actually have conversations with your customers, and teach them about the products, and try and gear them towards something that, based on your conversation, you think that they will enjoy because, ultimately, once they leave, if they leave with the highest-priced, highest-THC flower available and they have a negative experience with it, it's going to turn them off to cannabis, and it's going to turn them off to your store, right, to your operations, but if you gear them towards something that may be a little bit lower priced but they love it, they're going to think, "Wow, well they weren't trying to pull one over on me. They actually gave me something that was cheaper than what I thought I wanted."

Seth Adler: And it's great.

Kris Krane: Then they're going to come back, and they're going to buy more of it.

Seth Adler: Yeah. I got you.

Kris Krane: They're going to try other things, and they're going to trust you. That trust is really critical to maintaining brand loyalty, and the way you establish that trust is through factual education of your customer.

Seth Adler: There we go. All right. I will ask you the three final questions for guests that have been on more than once.

Kris Krane: Yeah, yeah.

Seth Adler: More than twice even.

Kris Krane: More than twice now, yeah. Yeah.

Seth Adler: Who knows how many times? I'll tell you what they are. I'll ask you them in order.

Kris Krane: Okay.

Seth Adler: How you doing? That's the first question?

Kris Krane: I don't know day to day. I don't know.

Seth Adler: You're alive. You're breathing.

Kris Krane: I don't know where I am most days.

Seth Adler: You think you live in Illinois. We'll ask your wife.

Kris Krane: My wife and kids live in Illinois. I often live at 35,000 feet. No, I'm loving my time in Illinois now. It's been great. I'm really enjoying my new adopted home. It's been great reestablishing my family there and-

Seth Adler: There we go.

Kris Krane: No, so overall, I'm doing well. I'm really excited about what's going on. I'm excited about what's going on with the industry. I'm excited about what's going on with the movement. I'm very excited about what's going on with 4Front. We have a lot going on. I feel like we're at a point where we're just on the cusp of some really, really big things happening, and that's exciting.

Seth Adler: Stay tuned. How we doing with everything else? You kind of mentioned the industry. You kind of mentioned 4Front, [inaudible 00:37:43], but if that was your answer to how you doing? how do you think everything else is going?

Kris Krane: On the whole, things are going great. Look, I have long-term perspective on this, right?

Seth Adler: Okay.

Kris Krane: I've been doing this for a long time from a policy perspective. We've ever made more gains in the political world than we have over the last few years, right? We've legalized marijuana now in, what, 10 states or close to 10 states that-

Seth Adler: How do you rank this past Election Day in terms of days of change?

Kris Krane: Probably top three.

Seth Adler: What are the other two just out of interest?

Kris Krane: We're never going to pass 2012, right, November 2012, right?

Seth Adler: Yeah.

Kris Krane: The first time we legalized marijuana anywhere, and we legalized in Colorado and in Washington. We'll never pass that.

Seth Adler: Yep, yep. You're right, first time. Right, yep.

Kris Krane: First time, yeah. I think this is up there when you ... the top two or three. I think the Democratic change in the House, and this is not to be a partisan, but Pete Sessions and the Republicans wouldn't let us do anything for years.

Seth Adler: Exactly, and he was going to retain control of that committee.

Kris Krane: Yes, he would have retained control of the committee. That's right, so I think-

Seth Adler: That's all it is. That's why I started with him. Yeah.

Kris Krane: That's right. In this political climate with marijuana having come as far as it has, having a chamber of Congress controlled by a party that has said that they are in favor of reform and are willing to call votes, that's monumental, right? This is very different than the last time the Democrats controlled Congress.

Seth Adler: Do you believe? Because the last time the Democrats controlled Congress, they had the same leadership that they have now. Do you see-

Kris Krane: Mostly, yeah.

Seth Adler: ... a potential roadblock?

Kris Krane: Of course. Never underestimate the Democrats' ability to fuck something up.

Seth Adler: There we go. All right.

Kris Krane: Right now. I am not saying this is the given, but I had a conversation with Nancy Pelosi's chief of staff during our Lobby Days.

Seth Adler: You did.

Kris Krane: During Lobby Days this summer at NCIA.

Seth Adler: Yeah, sure.

Kris Krane: I pressed on this, and I said, "I was at Students for Sensible Drug Policy the last time the Democrats took control of both houses and, that time, it was both houses and, look, I have to admit we were really disappointed with what you guys did. You had the opportunity to do it then. You didn't do it," and I was assured this is a very different political climate today.

Seth Adler: Okay.

Kris Krane: That it's very different, that we're dedicated to this. They tell me that they've been having conversations with Earl Blumenauer repeatedly about this, that-

Seth Adler: Well, that's a good guy to talk to.

Kris Krane: That Blumenauer was warning them, this was six months before the election, that if we don't do something, Trump's going to own this issue. Trump's going to take it from us.

Seth Adler: Yep, 100%.

Kris Krane: The exact same thing that I just talked about.

Seth Adler: 100%.

Kris Krane: I think we are in a different political climate. I think the Democratic base is different on this. I think the Democratic party has shifted dramatically. The last time the Democrats took control of Congress in 2006, they didn't want to do anything that they thought might jeopardize their ability to win in 2008, but we didn't have majority support for legalization then. Legalization support, according to the Gallup polling in 2006 was at about 46%.

Seth Adler: Cannabis years are dog years. Do the math.

Kris Krane: Now we're at 66-

Seth Adler: That's a really long time ago.

Kris Krane: Now were at 66%.

Seth Adler: That's it.

Kris Krane: It's a very different time.

Seth Adler: That's it.

Kris Krane: The base is there for the Democratic party. I think they feel like this is something that they're going to need to do for the base. It was not taken seriously as a political issue in 2006, even in 2008. It is today. Barack Obama did not run on legalization. He didn't even support legalization for his entire eight years in office.

Seth Adler: And the next ones will.

Kris Krane: Now whoever the nominee is, like we said, even those who don't really support legalization will support legalization in the next election because you can't win a Democratic primary without it, so it's a different time.

Seth Adler: Welcome to the future, Kris Krane.

Kris Krane: Welcome to the future. Yes, yes.

Seth Adler: On the soundtrack of your life, one track, one song that's got to be on there.

Kris Krane: All right. We did this once before [crosstalk 00:40:51]-

Seth Adler: We've done this every time before.

Kris Krane: We have done this before.

Seth Adler: It's always the last question.

Kris Krane: One song that has to be on there. I wasn't prepared for it this time. It's hard to pick one song. I think last time I picked Ice Hockey Hair.

Seth Adler: That sounds familiar.

Kris Krane: Because I wanted to do something really obscure. It's also a band that I just happen to love, and more people should listen to The Super Furry Animals because they're awesome.

Seth Adler: That's going to happen at least by one person trying. You know?

Kris Krane: It will. It will. Another song. I think the last time I was on, I picked a [Cigaro 00:41:23] song, so I probably can't go with them again.

Seth Adler: That's fair. That's fair.

Kris Krane: Which, also, more people should listen to their first three albums at least because they're amazing. Go seem them live if you can.

Seth Adler: This is someone that takes this question seriously.

Kris Krane: I know. I know. I know. I know.

Seth Adler: I very much appreciate that, Kris.

Kris Krane: I feel like I'm going to pick something, and I'm going to regret it later.

Seth Adler: That's fine. We can always update it, you know?

Kris Krane: We can. We can. Another song, soundtrack. I mean anything Radiohead would probably be on there.

Seth Adler: Yeah, but you can do better than that, right?

Kris Krane: Probably. I probably can. Let's go with ... This wasn't a really popular one, but E-Bow the Letter by R.E.M.

Seth Adler: Okay. You're an R.E.M. guy, aren't you?

Kris Krane: I am an R.E.M. fan. They were kind of the first band that I really got into on my own in junior high school, and that ... Well, that's not, I admit, probably not even one of their better songs, has a real sort of personal significance for me.

Seth Adler: That's fair, and I appreciate you sharing the song, and I'm going to check it out. I have a question for you.

Kris Krane: It's with Patti Smith. Yeah. She guested on that track.

Seth Adler: Well, then, there you go. That immediately puts it into something that I should have to listen to now.

Kris Krane: Yes, yes.

Seth Adler: I have a question for you which might seem ridiculous, and I've never asked this question before, but it occurs to me. Is R.E.M. the American version of the Smiths?

Kris Krane: Early on, that was a really good comparison. I don't think what they became was not really ...

Seth Adler: I got you.

Kris Krane: Was pretty different. When they went from their IRS days to the Warner Brothers days, they became more pop.

Seth Adler: Yeah, sure.

Kris Krane: But in the early days, yeah. I mean The Smiths, The Cure, R.E.M., those bands were all kind of in that same-

Seth Adler: It's in that circle.

Kris Krane: Yeah, what would have been called, at the time, quote, unquote, college radio back in the late '80s.

Seth Adler: Sure, absolutely.

Kris Krane: Yeah.

Seth Adler: It was also alternative music.

Kris Krane: Alternative [inaudible 00:43:16]. No, that was in [inaudible 00:43:19]. College radio was before-

Seth Adler: Before alternative.

Kris Krane: Before it became alternative, yeah. Then it became grunge, right?

Seth Adler: Yes, it did, but that was a whole new bag of tricks.

Kris Krane: Whole new thing.

Seth Adler: Exactly.

Kris Krane: Yeah, that's right. That's right, yes.

Seth Adler: Kris Krane, thank you so much. Can't wait to check in with you [inaudible 00:43:31].

Kris Krane: Awesome. Always great to be here, Seth. You're probably my favorite interviewer in this space, so any time you want me on, I'm happy to do it.

Seth Adler: Thank you so much.

Kris Krane: Excellent. Thank you.

Seth Adler: There you have Kris Krane. Very much appreciate his time. Very much appreciate your time. Stay tuned.

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Cannabis Economy is a real-time history of legal cannabis. We chronicle how personal and industry histories have combined to provide our current reality.