- The White House is putting the finishing touches on a long-promised plan to combat the opioid crisis.
- One of the measures would be to give drug dealers who sold opioids the death penalty.
- President Donald Trump floated the death penalty idea in two previous meetings.
President Donald Trump is nearing a roll-out of a plan to combat the opioid crisis that includes a provision to make some drug dealing cases subject to the death penalty, according to a new report.
Politico reported Thursday that the opiod plan could be released as soon as Monday when Trump visits New Hampshire.
The long-promised plan will include an array of measures to combat the growing opioid problem in America, including treatment-targeted measures like increased funds for Medicaid recipients struggling with addiction to receive inpatient care and testing for opioids in prisons to direct people towards treatment centres.
In addition to treatment funding, the plan includes increased punishments such as a Justice Department task force to crack down on the sale of illicit opioids on the internet and the aforementioned death penalty change.
According to a version of the plan viewed by Politico, the new death penalty cases would only apply to “certain cases where opioid, including Fentanyl-related, drug dealing and trafficking are directly responsible for death.”
In Pennsylvania, Trump said that he asked Singapore about their “zero-tolerance policy” towards drug dealers.
“What does that mean?” Trump said, replaying his conversation. “‘That means if we catch a drug dealer, death penalty.'”
He continued: “I think it’s a discussion we have to start thinking about. I don’t know if we’re ready – I don’t know if this country’s ready for it.”
The plan would face long odds if it comes to Congress as the cost would be steep and some lawmakers are sceptical of applying capital punishment to drug dealing cases.
“I mean, I get the message he’s delivering,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia told Politico. “We’ve got to treat it seriously. I don’t see that that’s going to solve the problem.”
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