A health crisis has found its way to America with a growing number of fentanyl crossing the border, increasing deadly drug overdoses. On Wednesday, House Democrats actually blocked H.R. 6184, the Halt All Lethal Trafficking of Fentanyl Act.
The resolution was introduced by Republican Representatives Morgan Griffith of Virginia and Kat Cammack of Florida. House Rules Republicans’ Twitter account tweeted about the abhorrent move:
“FLOOR ALERT: @HouseDemocrats blocked @HouseGOP requests to consider @RepMGriffith’s bill to keep fentanyl a controlled substance, a critical tool to stop illegal trafficking of fentanyl across Biden’s open border & keep these deadly substances from claiming more American lives.”
The severity of the crisis has been demonstrated by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) which announced they seized a record-breaking 11,201 pound of fentanyl in 2021. In just the first three months of fiscal year 2022, they have already seized more than 2,700 pounds – almost more than the amount seized during the entire 2019 year at 2,804 pounds.
“We recently learned from the CDC that between May 2020 and April 2021 more than a hundred thousand overdose deaths occurred in the United States – an increase of nearly 30 percent over the previous year…Because fentanyl has a proven medical use, it is considered a Schedule II narcotic, but elicit derivations of fentanyl, also called fentanyl-analogs or fentanyl-related substances, do not tend to demonstrate medical value,” said Griffith.
The bill would have permanently placed fentanyl-related substances into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act, making it illegal to sell the molecularly-altered fentanyl substance manufactured by criminals, instead of its normal classification as a Schedule II under the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.
Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are “defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” The emergency class-wide scheduling order for fentanyl-related substances is set to expire on February 18.
Fentanyl and related drugs, trafficked through the U.S.-Mexico border, are currently the leading cause of drug overdose deaths in the United States.
Mexican drug cartels, using substances imported from China, have largely switched over to producing and trafficking fentanyl because it is not limited to a growing season and it is easier to smuggle through the ports of entry and between the ports of entry along the southern border.
Griffith’s bill would have granted researchers the ability to conduct studies on these substances.
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736,200 fentanyl pills and 196 pounds of methamphetamines seized in rail car of train crossing from Mexico to Arizona
Thousands of fentanyl pills were found on a train crossing into Arizona from Mexico and seized by customs officials on the Mexico border in Arizona last week. The Daily Mail found that according to the report, the train was searched by United States Customs and Border Protection officials as it came into Nogales, Arizona Wednesday.
The train was carrying approximately 736,200 fentanyl pills and 196 pounds of methamphetamines in one single rail car. Just one day before, the port seized 150,000 pills hidden under the seats of a vehicle. On Monday, 10,400 fentanyl pills and 6.4 pounds of meth were found in tubes used for construction adhesive.
According to the Daily Mail, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) said it had captured around 50.6 million fake prescription pills laced with fentanyl and 10,000 pounds of fentanyl powder in 2022, labeling it the equivalent of ‘more than 379 million potentially deadly doses.’
According to experts, fentanyl has supplanted prescription opioids and heroin in the illegal drug markets. Officials from the DEA have said that the man-made opioids are 50 times more potent than heroin, with just two milligrams of fentanyl considered a potential “deadly dose.”
The DEA said findings show they have seized more than double the amount they seized last year; enough to kill all 330 million Americans.
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