Bottom Line

Bottom Line
© Greg Nash

• MARIJUANA. Cannabis companies and groups are increasingly trying to expand their footprint in Washington. Two of them recently hired lobbyists to work on issues related to the industry, according to disclosures. 

Holland & Knight is working for Eaze Solutions, which bills itself as “the #1 marijuana delivery platform in the world.” The firm will be “educating members of Congress on cannabis marketplace and related federal legislation and regulation; the STATES Act,” forms say. Lobbyists on the account include prominent Democrats including  Rich Gold, but also Republicans such as Kathryn Lehman and Kerry Feehery. The STATES Act would ease federal rules on marijuana businesses. 


The National Cannabis Industry Association hired another firm — VS Strategies — to work on various pieces of legislation that impact the cannabis industry, from changing banking regulations to pesticide use on crops.

• HORSE RACING. Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck recently signed four new clients, including the Jockey Club, the breed registry for thoroughbred horses in multiple countries. The firm will be working on the Horseracing Integrity Act, which would implement a number of new measures, including banning the use of a drug frequently given to racehorses on race days. The Jockey Club, and a coalition of other organizations, support the bill. The drug, Lasix, is a diuretic that helps prevent damage to a horse’s lungs and is considered by some as a performance-enhancing drug. The lobbyist on the account, Brian McGuire, worked as chief of staff for the GOP leader hailing from the home state of the Kentucky Derby — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDemocrats brush off GOP 'trolling' over Green New Deal Trump should beware the 'clawback' Congress Juan Williams: America needs radical solutions MORE.

• DIPLOMACY. Middle Eastern countries in the middle of a diplomatic spat are hiring more K Street firms. Qatar brought on three new firms this month and one signed on the last day in May: Ogilvy Government Relations, Lexington Strategies, Blueprint Advisors and law firm Debevoise & Plimpton, bringing its total of lobbying and PR firms to about two dozen. Bahrain, which is aligned with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates against Qatar, inked a contract with BGR Government Affairs. Each side is attempting to curry favor with the United States. Bahrain has a total of five firms working with it.