Trump Includes Death Penalty for Drug Dealers in Plan to Fight Opioid Crisis

President Trump this week announced new plans to fight the opioid crisis, including a proposal to seek the death penalty for drug dealers, NBC Newsreports.

The plans also include launching a nationwide campaign to raise public awareness about the dangers of prescription and illicit opioid use, as well as other drug use, according to a White House fact sheet. Trump called for increased border security to combat the flow of drugs into the United States.

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Advocacy Groups Oppose Trump Administration Cuts to Drug Policy Office

More than 150 organizations working to fight the opioid epidemic are opposing the Trump Administration’s proposed cuts to the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), The Hill reports.

The groups, led by the Addiction Policy Forum, sent a letter to White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, who is leading the administration’s response to the opioid crisis. Groups that signed the letter include those involved in prevention, treatment, recovery and criminal justice, the article notes.

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Families Say Trump’s Budget Cuts Run Counter to His Promises to Battle Addiction

Family members of young people who have struggled with or died from opioid addiction say President Trump’s budget proposal, which would reduce funding for addiction treatment, runs counter to his promises to help solve the problem, the Associated Press reports.

The proposed budget would shrink spending for Medicaid, which covers an estimated three in 10 adults with opioid addiction. The budget is unlikely to be approved as written, the article notes.

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Marijuana Industry Concerned About Trump’s Pick for Attorney General

The multibillion-dollar marijuana industry is concerned about Donald Trump’s choice for Attorney General, Senator Jeff Sessions, according to NPR. Sessions has made comments indicating he is not in favor of marijuana legalization.

As Attorney General, Sessions would oversee the Drug Enforcement Administration and federal prosecutors. In April, Sessions noted in a Senate hearing, “We need grown-ups in Washington to say marijuana is not the kind of thing that ought to be legalized, it ought not to be minimized, that it is in fact a very real danger.” He added that “good people don’t smoke marijuana.”

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