Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate will hold an unexpected – and perhaps first-ever – hearing on the potential medical benefits and risks of marijuana use Wednesday, July 13.

New research shows a dramatic drop in painkiller prescriptions after medical marijuana laws are passed.

Just days after the Democratic Party endorsed the rescheduling of cannabis and a “reasoned pathway to future legalization” of marijuana, delegates with the Republican Party voted against a more conservative platform that would have endorsed medical marijuana.

After criticism from the executive director of Maryland’s Medical Cannabis Commission, the chairman of the group announced that the first marijuana business license winners in the cultivator and processor categories could be chosen as soon as August 5.

And, just for fun:

New Internet stars: Attorneys Will Hutson and Chris Harris’ YouTube video has gone viral after it’s picked up on radio stations across the country.

Anything we missed?  Let us know in the comments.