Ralph Nader queries Rand Paul about support for father Ron Paul's billsSubmitted by bobbyw24 on Thu, 07/29/2010 - 06:53
WASHINGTON — Consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader wants to know where Rand Paul stands on bills sponsored in the U.S. House by his father.
Nader sent a letter Wednesday to Rand Paul, the Republican nominee in
asking about his positions on various legislative proposals offered by his father, Ron Paul, a Texas Republican.
“Interested observers of your campaign for the U.S. Senate often wonder the extent to which your views concur with those of your illustrious father,” Nader wrote.
In particular, Nader said he was interested in how Rand Paul felt about a measure his father introduced last year that would legalize the production of industrial hemp, part of the family of plants that includes marijuana.
Industrial hemp is used in such things as paper, fibers and even food products, but its cultivation is banned in the United States under anti-drug laws.
“This bill, which I encouraged Cong. Paul to introduce some years ago, would allow American farmers to grow this 5,000 year old long fiber plant with some 5,000 product uses (food, fuel, clothing, car parts, lubricants, etc.),” Nader wrote.
Ron Paul introduced such legislation in April 2009, with 24 co-sponsors, but it has not been acted on.
Rand Paul’s campaign manager Jesse Benton said it had not yet seen the letter.
Nader said that hemp can be imported from China and other countries, but the Drug Enforcement Agency has barred growing hemp domestically, even though it would “reduce oil imports, help the environment and amplify farmer incomes, among other benefits.”
In an interview, Nader said he was not endorsing anyone in the Kentucky Senate race.
He said he had listened to a radio broadcast of last week’s debate between Paul and Democrat Jack Conway, saying it was “so insipid, so dull.”
“Citizens should really try to spruce up campaign debates,” Nader said. “I just want to broaden it.”