During the September 16th CNN republican presidential debate, the issue of cannabis law reform came up, which host Jake Tapper called “one of the hottest questions” received by CNN from viewers.
Senator Rand Paul began the debate on the subject by stating, “What the American people don’t like about politics is the hypocrisy”, pointing to he fact that at least one of the candidates on stage has admitted to using cannabis in the past.
Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, knowing Paul was talking about him, said that “40 years ago I smoked marijuana… I am sure that other people might have done it… and may not want to say it in front of 25 million people. My mom’s not happy that I just did.”
Rand Paul earns the top spot on the list of 22 presidential hopefuls graded by the Marijuana Policy Project; Chris Christie and Rick Santorum receive lowest grades
The Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), the nation’s largest organization working to change cannabis laws, has launched a voter guide to the 2016 presidential race, detailing the candidates’ positions on cannabis policy and assigning them grades based on where they stand.
Senator Rand Paul, a Republican from Kentucky, filed an amendment in the Senate today that would protect states that have or are implementing medical cannabis programs from federal intrusion. The amendment would also protect patients and physicians in medical cannabis states from federal prosecution.
The amendment, Amendment 3630, was added to a federal jobs bill currently being discussed on the Senate floor. It would allow states to enact and implement laws that “authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of marijuana for medical use”, without fear of prosecution.
The Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commissionvoted today to approve a plan by the state’s Agriculture Department to soon begin issuing hemp licenses, with hemp farming to begin next year. This move is possible due to the passage of Senate Bill 50 earlier this year which legalized hemp in the state, with it taking effect being contingent on a change in federal law. With the recent announcement from the Obama Administration that they won’t go after states which have legalized cannabis, the state is considering that to be enough of a change.
As it passes midnight in Kentucky, Senate Bill 50 officially becomes law. The measure, which legalizes industrial hemp in the state, recently passed the Senate and House, giving the governor until April 6th at 11:59PM to either sign the bill into law, veto it, or let it become law. With no veto or signature, and with it now being April 7th, the bill has officially become law.
Under this new measure, hemp production is now legal in Kentucky. However, with the federal government still seeing hemp as a schedule 1 drug next to the likes of heroin and other dangerous substances, Kentuckians will need to wait until a federal change to take place to begin production.
This morning Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear made an official announcement that he’ll be allowing a measure legalizing industrial hemp to become law. Both the state’s Senate and House, after heavy debate, passed the measure (Senate Bill 50) over the past several weeks, putting it in the hands of the governor to either veto the bill, sign it into law, or ignore it: he’s taking the latter option, meaning it will officially pass into law after April 6th.
The measure’s passage comes with the support of Kentuckians, with recent polling showing that 65% in the state support legal hemp production.
The measure puts Kentucky, as with the other 8 states that have legalized hemp, directly against the federal government, which considers hemp a schedule 1 drug. However, U.S. Senators Rand Paul and Mitch McConnel, both from Kentucky, have stated that they’d work at granting the state a federal waiver to grow hemp if the measure passes.