Search Results for: Sen. Rand Paul

Dr. Rand Paul Introduces HEMP Act To Relieve Unnecessary Constraints On Hemp Industry, Provide Transparency And Certainty

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) continued his efforts to address Kentucky hemp farmers’ concerns with federal overreach and bring clarity, transparency, and certainty to regulation by introducing the Hemp Economic Mobilization Plan (HEMP) Act of 2020.

In response to concerns raised by Kentucky hemp farmers and processors, Dr. Paul’s HEMP Act would change the legal definition of hemp to raise the THC limit from 0.3% to 1%. Currently, any hemp crops testing above 0.3% have to be destroyed.

The legislation would require testing of the final hemp-derived product instead of the hemp flower or plant itself, as the 15-day window for testing the hemp flower or plant does not take potential testing backlogs, lack of personnel to collect samples, harvesting time, or environmental factors that farmers cannot control into account.

Dr. Paul’s HEMP Act would also protect legitimate hemp farmers, processors, and transporters by requiring hemp shipments to contain a copy of the seed certificate showing the hemp was grown from 1% THC seed, and it would address current uncertainty by defining a margin of error for testing THC levels. Neither current law nor the USDA’s interim final rule provide such a margin.

“For years, I’ve led the fight in Washington to restore one of Kentucky’s most historically vital crops by legalizing industrial hemp. We achieved a hard-won victory, but there is still work to do to prevent the federal government from weighing down our farmers with unnecessary bureaucratic micromanaging. My legislation will help this growing industry reach its full economic potential, and I am proud the bill has strong support all the way from local Kentucky farmers and activists to national groups, including the American Farm Bureau Federation,” said Dr. Paul.

“The U.S. hemp industry has had its share of roadblocks, but we continue to push forward and make changes that will help hemp producers thrive. Senator Paul’s HEMP Act has the potential to improve upon the highest priority issues for hemp growers, processors, and labs, while making sure to keep our consumers safe as well. We are grateful for the continued support from our federal delegation and ask that folks at home call their Congressional representatives to ask for their support,” said Katie Moyer, Owner of Kentucky Hemp Works. 

“We are so excited to hear about Senator Paul’s H.E.M.P. Act, which will help farmers, processors and retailers in our young hemp industry. We believe that loosening up some important interstate business requirements are a much-needed step toward more prosperous times in the hemp economy,” said Kentucky Hemp Association President Tate Hall and Vice President Jana Groda. 

“We appreciate Sen. Paul’s leadership and support for hemp farmers in Kentucky and across the United States. The HEMP Act makes critical improvements that will better allow farmers to successfully grow and profit from hemp,” said Vote Hemp President Eric Steenstra.

Dr. Paul has been a leading voice for removing government restrictions on hemp, and his past efforts, including championing legislation, testifying before the Kentucky legislature, and advocating for Kentucky farmers in Washington, have helped ensure Kentucky can rebuild its hemp industry and push forward to a prosperous future. You can find a video detailing his efforts HERE.

You can read Dr. Paul’s HEMP Act of 2020 HERE, and you can find background and further details in a one-pager HERE.

Paul Finds Unlikely Support From Marijuana Advocates

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA :Among the top contributors to Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s presidential campaign are the usual suspects — a financial management firm, a real estate developer, a manufacturer of hand tools.

But Paul also is getting significant support from an unlikely source for a conservative Republican — the marijuana industry.

The Marijuana Policy Project gave Paul’s campaign $5,000 — the legal limit that a political committee can give a candidate, according to campaign finance records.

The National Cannabis Industry Association gave $5,000. Its executive director and federal lobbyist added another $2,000, according to a tally by the Center for Responsive Politics, a non-partisan group that tracks campaign spending.

Rand Paul Hits Jeb Bush On Marijuana Rich Kid ‘Hypocrisy

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul continued to hit former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Thursday for admitting to smoking marijuana in high school — saying his “hypocrisy” is an example of why drug laws need changing in U.S.

Bush admitted in previous interviews and again during Wednesday’s Republican presidential primary debate smoking marijuana while attending the prestigious Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts.

“He didn’t go to jail,” Paul told students at the University of Nevada-Reno on Thursday. “Why? Because he was rich, and he was elite, and he was going to a very special school.”

Paul said he didn’t begrudge Bush’s education, but said that Bush supports policies that disproportionately result in minority and lower-income young people going to jail for lengthy sentences.

Rand Paul Backs Effort To Bring Banking To Legal Marijuana Businesses

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:  Less than a month after holding a fundraiser on the sidelines of a Colorado marijuana conference, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is joining the fight to give America’s growing legal marijuana industry access to banking services.

Paul, the first major-party presidential candidate to publicly seek support from legal marijuana industry, is among the bipartisan co-sponsors of the Marijuana Businesses Access to Banking Act of 2015, introduced Thursday in the Senate.

Similar legislation has already been re-introduced in the House after a previous effort to ease access to banking for marijuana companies failed. 

The Senate bill would prohibit banking regulators from penalizing or discouraging banks from providing financial services to marijuana businesses operating in areas of the U.S. where marijuana has been legalized.

 

Rand Paul To Raise Money With Marijuana Industry In Denver

COLORADO: Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s trip to Colorado this week includes a first for a presidential candidate: a fundraiser with the marijuana industry.

The Republican is raising money Tuesday at the Cannabis Business Summit in Denver in what an industry trade group is billing as a history making event. “Never before has a major-party presidential candidate held a reception at a cannabis industry event, and NCIA is proud to host Senator Paul,” the National Cannabis Industry Association said in an email promoting the event, which was firstreported by Yahoo News.

The minimum donation to attend the Tuesday event is $2,700, according to organizers.

Taylor West, the group’s deputy director, said the private “VIP reception” is designed to let marijuana insiders hear from Paul, who supports legislation to legalize medical marijuana and give the pot industry access to banking.

Rand Paul Proposes Measure To Shield State Medical Marijuana Laws From Feds

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Thursday filed an amendment in the Senate that would protect states that implement medical marijuana laws, as well as patients and physicians in those states, from federal prosecution.

Paul’s Amendment 3630, filed Thursday morning to Sen. John Walsh’s (D-Mont.) jobs bill being heard on the Senate floor, allows states to “enact and implement laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of marijuana for medical use” without fear of federal prosecution. There are 33 states that have enacted laws protecting some form medical marijuana.

The amendment also prohibits prosecution of patients and physicians in those states for violating federal laws against the drug.

“What we’re trying to do is look at the law and allow states that have changed their laws and have allowed medical marijuana to do so, for doctors to be able to prescribe and for people to be able to get those prescriptions without being worried about the federal government coming in and arresting them,” Brian Darling, Paul’s communications director, told The Huffington Post.

Rand Paul, Cory Booker Join Forces to Protect Medical Marijuana From Feds

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Three senators proposed amendments Wednesday to ban the Justice Department from spending money to combat medical marijuana in states that allow it.

Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., are sponsoring an amendment to broadly ban action against state medical marijuana laws. Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., is sponsoring an amendment that would specifically protect patients.

The amendment offered by Paul and Booker mirrors a prohibition attached May 30 to a spending bill by the House of Representatives in a shocking 219-189 win for reformers.

The more narrow Walsh amendment would block enforcement of laws against illegal drug users possessing guns or ammunition if the drug in question is medical marijuana. “This measure will ensure that patients can hunt, purchase ammunition and protect their homes without fear of prosecution,” Walsh said in an emailed statement.

In The Weeds: Republicans Paul, Christie, Perry Open To Softer Pot Laws Ahead Of 2016

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:  Republicans eyeing the White House in 2016 are pushing their party to change its stance and accept a softening of federal marijuana laws — a dramatic shift from the GOP’s most recent contenders who railed against the drug and questioned its medicinal value.

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky has arguably been the most vocal on the subject, saying the federal government should leave the issue entirely to the states. Texas Gov. Rick Perry also argues that marijuana’s legal status should be a state issue, and he points to drug courts in his state that he said have helped move Texas toward decriminalization. [Read more…]

All Of These Presidential Candidates Have Admitted Smoking Marijuana

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: One of the lighter moments of Wednesday’s epic slog of a Republican presidential primary debate came when former Florida governor Jeb Bush joked that his mother, the former first lady, would not be happy that he admitted having smoked marijuana “40 years ago.”

The line got a fair amount of laughs from the audience, but it also came amid a broader debate among the candidates over federal drug laws. Defending marijuana legalization, Sen. Rand Paul asserted that “kids who had privilege like [Bush]” are often given a pass when it comes to admitting past drug use, whereas people from poorer backgrounds — often minorities — are more likely to go to prison for using marijuana.

Paul is easily the most marijuana-friendly candidate in the Republican field, though he has famously declined to offer a straight answer as to whether or not he’s ever used the drug himself. The rest of the candidates are divided when it comes to their stances on marijuana legalization, with Bush saying that it is an issue that should be decided on a state level while others, like Carly Fiorina and New Jersey governor Chris Christie, argued that federal laws banning marijuana should be enforced in every state.

Colorado Marijuana Law Point Of Contention During GOP Debate; Bush Smoked 40 Years Ago

CALIFORNIA: Colorado’s recreational marijuana law took center stage for a time during the Republican presidential debate Wednesday night.

It certainly was a political point of contention.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie defended his position that if he’s elected president, he would enforce the federal law and make it illegal to smoke marijuana recreationally in Colorado.

Jeb Bush voted against legalizing marijuana in Florida, but he argued Colorado could make its own decisions. Then Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul went on the offensive.

“Gov. Christie would go into the state of Colorado and if you’re breaking any federal law, even though the state law allows it, he would put you in jail,” Paul said.