Trump Admin Reportedly Finalizing Anti-Drug Plan That Includes Death Penalty

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The Trump administration is preparing to roll out its plan to address the opioid crisis, which will include imposing the death penalty for some drug dealers.

Politico reported President Donald Trump’s plan, which has been circulating through various federal agencies, would create a new Justice Department task force to aggressively monitor internet sales of opioid drugs.

Additionally, it would address how the federal government pays for opioid prescriptions to limit access to the powerful painkillers. The target is to bring down the number of opioid prescriptions by one-third within three years.

Further, the plan would facilitate Medicaid paying for treatment, making it easier for those addicted to the drugs to receive inpatient care.

According to the National Institute of Health, there were 64,000 drug overdose deaths in 2016, and most of them were related to opioids.

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In a statement released earlier this month, the White House noted that same year over 20 million Americans, or about 1 in 13 people age 12 and older, had a substance use disorder.

“Opioids are a class of drugs that includes everything from heroin to legal prescription pain relievers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, and morphine,” the statement read. “The increase in deaths involving opioids is so large that it now affects average U.S. life expectancy.”

At a White House summit on opioid abuse on Mar. 1, Trump said the death penalty may be the best way of handling some drug dealers.

“We have pushers and drugs dealers, they are killing hundreds and hundreds of people,” Trump said. “If you shoot one person, they give you life, they give you the death penalty. These people can kill 2,000, 3,000 people and nothing happens to them.”

He added that countries that impose the death penalty for drug dealers have less of a drug problem.

“Some countries have a very, very tough penalty — the ultimate penalty — and by the way, they have much less of a drug problem than we do,” Trump stated.

Do you think major drug dealers should receive the death penalty?

Trump has received some resistance even from Republicans on Capitol Hill over the idea of imposing the death penalty.

“I would have to strongly evaluate and look at any proposal like that,” Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska told Politico. “I don’t know if the president was serious or just said it off the cuff. … It’s a big issue when you decide to bring a capital case or pass a law that allows for capital punishment.”

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Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, which has been hard hit by the opioid epidemic, said she doesn’t support the death penalty for drug cases.

“I mean, I get the message he’s delivering: We’ve got to treat it seriously,” she said. “I don’t see that that’s going to solve the problem.”

Last fall, Trump spoke passionately about the need to address the opioid crisis, officially designating it a “national health emergency.”

The president talked about his older brother’s fight with addiction, which led to his untimely death in his early 40s.

“I had a brother, Fred — great guy, best-looking guy, best personality — much better than mine,” Trump quipped in a speech from the White House, drawing laughter from the audience.

“But he had a problem,” the president continued. “He had a problem with alcohol, and he would tell me, ‘Don’t drink. Don’t drink.’ He was substantially older, and I listened to him and I respected, but he would constantly tell me, don’t drink. He’d also add, don’t smoke. But he would say it over and over and over again.”

Trump, 71, said to this day he has never had a drink and never smoked. “And I have no longing for it. I have no interest in it,” he related.

Trump observed that his brother, who was eight years older, had a “very, very tough life because of alcohol … But I learned because of Fred. I learned.”

“It is time to liberate our communities from this scourge of drug addiction,” the president proclaimed. “We can be the generation that ends the opioid epidemic. We can do it.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 1,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Birthplace
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Nationality
American
Honors/Awards
Graduated dean's list from West Point
Education
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith




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