WASHINGTON, DC -- Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a Senate bill to hold drug dealers accountable for trafficking fentanyl, a powerful and deadly synthetic painkiller often used to tranquilize elephants. The Temporary Reauthoriazation and Study of the Emergency Scheduling of Fentynyl Analogues Act (S. 3201) renews fentanyl compounds as Schedule I substances under the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), giving law enforcement the tools they need to bring drug dealers to justice.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 28,000 deaths involving synthetic opioids (other than methadone) occurred in the United States in 2017, which is more deaths than from any other type of opioid.
"It is issues like the deadly opioid epidemic that we should be focused on in Washington, not political charades that tear apart the fabric of our nation. This bill will hold fentanyl dealers accountable for selling one of the most potent and deadly synthetic drugs around the world," said Congressman Rogers, co-founding co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse. "We are making great strides in our multi-faceted life-saving efforts to combat the nation's opioid crisis, and we must remain vigilant to maintain effective laws and policies to uphold justice."
The CDC describes fentanyl as a man-made opioid that is 50-times more potent than heroin and 100-times more potent than morphine.
President Trump is expected to sign the legislation into law.