Thursday morning, the House passed an amendment on industrial hemp to the Farm Bill offered by Representatives Jared Polis (CO), Earl Bluemenauer (OR), and Thomas Massie (KY), by a vote of 225-200.
This amendment was debated Wednesday evening, where the public learned the DEA was strongly lobbying for a “No” vote on the amendment, raising the specter of the government using its own funds to lobby itself, as the Huffington Post’s Ryan Grim points out. Campaign for Liberty also learned just before the vote the Majority Whip’s office was also lobbying for a “No” vote.
While it doesn’t go as far as the “Industrial Hemp Farming Act” (H.R. 525) sponsored by Rep. Massie, this amendment would allow colleges and universities to grow and cultivate industrial hemp for agricultural and research purposes. It would only apply in states where industrial hemp growth and cultivation is already allowed by state law, like Kentucky and Colorado.
The adoption of this amendment is certainly a step in the right direction for bringing common sense back to the debate over industrial hemp cultivation in America.
The text of the amendment can be viewed here, and video of the debate is posted below.
UPDATE: The Farm Bill was defeated by a vote of 195-234.