Boehner, Weld-backed pot company IPO bound

Acreage Holdings, the New York-based marijuana company that just added former House Speaker John Boehner and former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld to its board of advisers, may be going public in the not so distant future.

“Their plan is to take the company public soon and become a dominant player in the cannabis industry,” Weld told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney. “They’ve got the money behind them.”

Both Boehner and Weld agreed to join the board of advisers of the pot company immediately and are committed to joining its board of directors once it’s officially formed, according to a news release from Acreage Holdings.

Formed by former Wall Street and finance veterans, Acreage Holdings has one of the most diverse portfolios compared with other companies in the cannabis industry. The company currently holds cultivation, processing and dispensing operations across 11 states – and plans to expand.

In a statement, Boehner and Weld, longtime Republicans, criticized marijuana’s classification as a Schedule 1 drug, which refers to a substance that is illegal and considered to have a strong potential for abuse. Other Schedule 1 drugs include heroin and LSD, while some Schedule 2 drugs – which have an accepted legal use – include fentanyl and oxycodone.

“While we come at this issue from different perspectives and track records, we both believe the time has come for serious consideration of a shift in federal marijuana policy,” Boehner and Weld said. Weld ran for vice president on the Libertarian Party ticket in the 2016 election.

Over the past 20 years, an increasing number of states have relaxed the regulation of marijuana under the protection of the 10th Amendment, which grants powers not delegated to the federal government to the states or the people.

“There are a lot of applications of marijuana,” Weld said on Thursday. “It could help with serious diseases, like cancer, diabetes, hepatitis. And it could help populations like our veterans, 20% of whom use it on a daily basis anyway, but it’s got to be in the shadows.”