President Joe Biden is fueling the raging fentanyl epidemic, a true national public health emergency warranting immediate action. As a new wave of the Biden border crisis is boiling over with the end of Title 42, this administration has shown little interest in actually solving it. One thing is clear: America needs new leadership.
Across this great country, I hear time and time again the pain of families who have lost a loved one to fentanyl. Every community has felt the impact of the grueling epidemic, and it’s something that has hit close to home for me. A friend of mine, Alan Shao, buried his 27-year-old son and namesake who died from fentanyl earlier this year. Alan’s painful story serves as a stern reminder there is no family in this nation that is immune to this tragedy.
The epidemic does not discriminate. In Biden’s America, every town is a border town and anyone at any time can fall victim. President Biden’s failure to secure our border is directly responsible for the escalating number of deaths the American people are facing due to fentanyl.
This problem will only be magnified as the Biden administration allows Title 42 to expire, something even Secretary Mayorkas admitted in 2022 will only cause the number of migrants showing up along our southern border to surge. The administration’s inaction will not only result in more fentanyl being flooded into our communities, but it will also put more felons, human traffickers, drug dealers, and known terrorists on the streets and among our families’ neighborhoods – a tragic story we’ve witnessed before on President Biden’s watch.
The reality is bleak under his leadership, but we have an opportunity to change course right in our own hands. It’s time for us to take bold and decisive action. It starts with securing our border and dismantling the criminal cartels trafficking fentanyl into our country. Here’s how we do it:
First, let’s pass my legislation – the Alan T. Shao II Fentanyl Public Health Emergency and Overdose Prevention Act – to utilize powers similar to those under Title 42 and apply them in response to the new public health emergency: the fentanyl epidemic. Today, more Americans between the ages of 18 and 45 die from fentanyl than from COVID-19, car accidents, cancer and suicide combined, making fentanyl the leading cause of death among adults. To treat this with any less rigor than our COVID-19 response would be an injustice to grieving families and loved ones.
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Next, let’s pass my Securing Our Border Act. This important piece of legislation redirects $15 billion the Biden administration previously designated to hire an army of 87,000 IRS agents and instead funds critical border security initiatives. These funds would give our border agents the tools and incentives they need to do their job effectively, finish construction of the southern border wall, and end the Biden administration’s disastrous catch-and-release policy.
Finally, Congress must pass the FEND Off Fentanyl Act to curb the flow of money powering these cartels by tapping into the economic security tools at our disposal and empowering law enforcement to do their job. It would enact the toughest sanctions regime on criminal cartels in American history, freeze the cartels’ collective and individual assets, and curb their ability to conduct their dealings in the United States and abroad.
Together, my three bills form a three-pronged approach to address and finally solve our border crisis and fentanyl epidemic.
The solutions are right there in front of us. It’s time for a president to implement them. With new leadership, guided by an optimistic vision of what America can be, I know we get the job done to keep our streets safe, secure our southern border, and put this country on a path towards a better and brighter future.