Winning the War on Opioids
End the Epidemic to put America First
America First Policies believes the opioid epidemic poses an existential threat to the future of our country. A successful strategy to beat this plague will get to the root of the problem by cutting off the supply of drugs through strong enforcement at the border and within the U.S., ensuring the sick and suffering have access to effective treatment, and providing those at risk with hope and opportunity to lead fulfilling lives drug-free.
- More than 62,000 Americans died of drug overdoses in 2016.
- Fentanyl, the cheap synthetic heroin fueling the opioid crisis, originates in China.
- Mexican drug cartels are involved in smuggling fentanyl that is manufactured in China.
- Counterfeit oxycontin pills laced with Chinese fentanyl are smuggled into the U.S. from Canada.
- The U.S. Department of Justice indicted four Chinese nationals for trafficking large quantities of the synthetic opioid fentanyl into the United States.
- Corrupt doctors and pharmaceutical distributors divert narcotics from legitimate pharmacies to the black market. McKesson and Cardinal Health, two of the three largest opioid distributors, shipped 12.3 million pills to a single pharmacy in a small West Virginia town from 2006 to 2014.
- The demographic groups hardest hit by de-industrialization are hard hit by addiction and overdoses. The opioid plague is taking its heaviest toll in working-class communities.
- Many companies are having difficulties filling job openings because applicants can’t pass a drug test.
The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 allocated more than $4.65 billion across agencies to help states and local government efforts toward prevention, treatment and law enforcement initiatives to combat the opioid crisis. That represents a $3 billion increase over 2017 spending levels. https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=d0c85a72-88da-4d00-b9bb-4f49aec93042
The administration is removing regulatory barriers that prevent people from getting rehab and the treatment they need.
Middle-aged non-Hispanic whites in the U.S. with a high school diploma or less have experienced increasing midlife mortality since the late 1990s. This is due to both rises in the number of “deaths of despair”—death by drugs, alcohol and suicide—and to a slowdown in progress against heart disease and cancer, the two largest killers in middle age. https://www.brookings.edu/bpea-articles/mortality-and-morbidity-in-the-21st-century/
“Trump Administration’s 3-front War on Opioids,” World Net Daily, Curtis Ellis, April 27, 2018, http://www.wnd.com/2018/04/trumps-3-front-war-on-opioids/
“Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white non-Hispanic Americans in the 21st century,” Anne Case and Angus Deaton, Princeton University, National Academy of Science, December 2015, http://www.pnas.org/content/112/49/15078
Briefing by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, James A. Walsh, U.S. Department of State, January 30, 2018, https://www.state.gov/r/pa/ime/eapmediahub/files/277772.htm
Opioid Crisis Proposals and Funding, Holland & Knight LLP April 9 2018, https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=d0c85a72-88da-4d00-b9bb-4f49aec93042
How to Find Opioid Treatment Programs, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, https://www.hhs.gov/opioids/treatment/index.html
Authorities seize massive amount of Chinese fentanyl in Philadelphia, Philly Voice, March 28, 2018, http://www.phillyvoice.com/authorities-seize-massive-amount-chinese-fentanyl-main-line/