With a push from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Congress just voted to legalize hemp.
Hemp is derived from the cannabis plant, but it doesn’t get you high. Instead, it’s typically used for its fiber to make all kinds of products — food, paper, cardboard, carpets, clothes, rope, and more.
But hemp production and sales have historically been banned under federal drug laws that also prohibit marijuana. (You might see some hemp products in some places in the US, but those usually come from technically illegal sources, outside the country, or places that got narrow exceptions under recent pilot programs.) The bill passed by Congress won’t legalize pot for recreational or medical uses; it only deals with hemp.
McConnell (R-KY), along with Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Ron Wyden (D-OR), introduced the bill earlier this year. It was wrapped into the broader farm bill, which mostly deals with agriculture subsidies and food assistance programs, and passed with that legislation. President Donald Trump is expected to sign the bill into law.
Original Article can be found here: https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/12/12/18136408/congress-hemp-marijuana-legalization-farm-bill