Updated: Jan 19, 2019
On February 14, 2013, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), along U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) and U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR), introduced Senate Bill 359, the Senate companion bill to HR 525. However, the bill language is not identical to H.R. 525.
“I am proud to introduce legislation with my friend Rand Paul and Senate colleagues, that will allow Kentucky farmers to harness the economic potential that industrial hemp can provide,” McConnell stated in a press release. “During these tough economic times, this legislation has the potential to create jobs and provide a boost to Kentucky’s economy and to our farmers and their families.”
Sen. Paul commented, “The Industrial Hemp Farming Act paves the way to creating jobs for Kentucky, allowing American farmers to cultivate industrial hemp and benefit from its many uses will boost our state’s economy and bring much-needed jobs in the agriculture community. Today’s State Senate victory, coupled with the efforts Sen. McConnell and I are making here in Washington increase my confidence that they will soon payoff, to the benefit of Kentuckians.”
In June 2012, Paul attempted to amend the farm bill to allow farmers to grow industrial hemp, along Wyden, Merkley, and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (S. 3501.)
The Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2013 was introduced in the House with 28 original co-sponsors.