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Everyone's Talking About How Well Marijuana Did In The Election, But Hemp Was A Winner, Too

Some influential politicians and hemp supporters won reelection or flipped seats.

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As the votes continue to trickle in for the national election, one outcome is crystal clear: It was a big night for hemp.

Olena Ruban | Getty Images

No matter what your political leanings, if you're a hemp supporter, there is plenty to be happy about: 

  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who led the fight for hemp’s legalization in the 2014 and 2018 Farm Bills, won reelection by a more than 20 point margin in Kentucky.  Whether it is McConnell who secures the Majority Leader or not, hemp will be secure under the leadership of Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

  • U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR), who has led efforts to pressure the USDA and FDA into support for the hemp and CBD industries, won reelection by a nearly 20 point margin as well.

  • Cannabis champion Senator Corey Gardner (R-CO) lost by a wide margin. Still, his victorious opponent, John Hickenlooper (D-CO), oversaw one of the first successful state hemp programs in Colorado and should be an industry ally.

  • Reps. Kurt Schrader (D-OR) and Morgan Griffith (R-VA), notably lead sponsors of HR 8179 in favor of the sale of hemp-derived CBD as a dietary supplement cruised in their reelection bids.

  • Reps. David Joyce (R-OH) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), authors of the strong letter sent to the DEA urging that agency to withdraw its troublesome interim final rule on hemp, won  re-election victories

Related: Big Wins For Weed In The 2020 Election

Not all good news

Although most of the news about hemp was positive, the industry did receive one setback. Longtime hemp supporter, Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN) lost his battle for re-election. Rep. Peterson worked tirelessly on the 2018 Farm Bill, introducing legislation to protect hemp-derived CBD. 

Still, there is ample reason for hemp enthusiasts to be pleased with the future path for hemp.

"Nearly all of our leading supporters on Capitol Hill won re-election, and we are even more confident that the bi-partisan support Congress has shown for hemp farmers and small businesses will continue to grow," says Jonathan Miller, general counsel of the U.S. Hemp Roundtable, a coalition of dozens of leading companies and organizations committed to safe hemp and CBD products. 

"We are most bullish about the passage of HR 8179 which would establish a regulatory pathway for the sale of hemp-derived CBD as a dietary supplement."