Two of Kentucky’s highest profile Republicans are teaming up to rally for industrial hemp. U.S. Senator Rand Paul and Agriculture Commissioner James Comer will hold a news conference on Thursday to double down on their support for the crop, which can be used for textiles or oil.
Paul is the co-sponsor of a Senate bill that would make hemp legal again in the U.S. And Comer supports the law on the state level.
Comer says Kentucky needs to act fast before other states get in line first.
“Industrial hemp is gonna be legal in the United States in a few years, if not next year. Now, will Kentucky will be one of the first states to do it, that’s up for the Kentucky General Assembly to decide," said Comer.
Comer is also planning an announcement about the Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission, which has been inactive since its inception 10 years ago.
The law enforcement community opposes industrial hemp. They say its cousin crop, marijuana, can be grown in its place. But Comer rejects that assertion, saying the two plants are markedly different to the naked eye.