Fake History of 280E

This is Fake History: “The original sponsor of 280E, former Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA) . . . .” I see that statement that Mr. Stark sponsored 280E, for example, in Brett Stone’s newsgroup, https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/mmjnews/conversations/topics/37712.

Mr. Stark now opposes 280E, which well he might, but that doesn’t make him the, or an, “original sponsor.” 280E originated in the Senate Finance Committee in 1982, when Bob Dole chaired it, as the legislative history, from the Joint Committee on Taxation Blue Book indicates: https://newtax.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/1982-blue-book.pdf.  For a balanced view of 280E, see https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2015/12/18/how-bob-dole-got-america-addicted-to-marijuana-taxes/.  For a middle ground compromise, suggested by NORML, between current law and repeal, see https://newrevenue.org/2017/02/16/5139/.  And it’s 280E, not 280e, not 280(e).  It comes right before 280F.

Incidentally, Bob Lighthizer, soon to be a member of the Trump cabinet as U.S. Trade Representative, was Senator Dole’s Finance Committee Chief of Staff when 280E came in.   I was on Joint Tax staff then, doing international taxes, and was not involved with 280E.

No doubt Mr. Stark, who ranked high on the House Committee on Ways and Means in 1982, when the tax bill containing 280E came back to the House from the Senate, went along with 280E – everyone did. This may be the source of the confusion:  Mr. Stark was the original sponsor of a bill to repeal 280E. https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/hr1985/text. But to give extra weight to his opposition by saying he was “the original sponsor of 280E”? Fake history.

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Author: patoglesby

From 1982 to 1990, I worked in tax policy for Committees of the United States Congress. In recent years, I was Adjunct Lecturer at UNC-Chapel Hill's Business School and then Adjunct Professor at its Law School.

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