Griffith, Latta Applaud House Passage of Their HALT Fentanyl Act
Thursday, May 25, 2023 | Mollie Timmons (202-225-3861)
Today, Congressman Morgan Griffith (R-VA) and Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH) applauded House passage of their Halt All Lethal Trafficking of (HALT) Fentanyl Act, legislation to address the permanent scheduling of fentanyl analogues.
“I am pleased the House has voted in favor of my critical legislation with Congressman Latta to permanently schedule deadly fentanyl analogues, strengthening law enforcement’s ability to prosecute fentanyl traffickers. The bill also promotes research of fentanyl analogues in the hopes of finding medicinal uses. As drug overdose deaths reach historic levels in our country, the HALT Fentanyl Act offers a way to make progress amid the tragedy of addiction,” said Griffith. “I urge my colleagues in the Senate to swiftly pass this legislation so that we may send it to the president’s desk to be signed into law.”
“With today's bipartisan vote in the House to advance the HALT Fentanyl Act, we are one step closer to curbing the devastating fentanyl poisoning crisis and saving American lives,” Latta said. “For too long, our nation has battled an opioid epidemic fueled in recent years by illicit fentanyl and its analogs, which claimed the lives of more than 5,000 Ohioans and 70,000 Americans in 2021. Illicit fentanyl is now the leading cause of death for people in the United States aged 18 to 49. That's why I have been championing the HALT Fentanyl Act, alongside my friend and colleague, Rep. Morgan Griffith, to permanently label these lethal substances as Schedule I narcotics. This permanent labeling change is significant and needed because it will help get fentanyl-related substances off our streets and out of our communities. I now urge the Senate to take up this bill and send it to the president’s desk to be signed into law. Our constituents need this solution; lives are on the line if we do not act. It’s time to get this bill across the finish line.”
Currently, fentanyl and fentanyl analogues temporarily fall under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) due to a temporary scheduling order that runs through Dec. 31, 2024. The HALT Fentanyl Act permanently places fentanyl analogues into Schedule I of the CSA, simplifies registration processes for certain research with Schedule I substances, removes barriers that currently impede such work, and provides for exemption of individual analogues from Schedule I when evidence demonstrates it is appropriate.
“Due to the Biden administration’s incompetence at the border, fentanyl has flowed into American communities and destroyed lives. Democrats had more than two years to address their own self-created crisis, but they have failed to do their job and the epidemic has only gotten worse under their watch. Like every other crisis ignored by Democrats, House Republicans are committed to delivering solutions. The HALT Fentanyl Act is one needed tool to help stop the flow of fentanyl and provides law enforcement agencies the authority they need to help them adequately address this crime. I am grateful to the leadership of Congressman Latta and Congressman Griffith – their work will help save lives and strengthen communities,” said Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
“President Biden’s open border policy has caused fentanyl to flood into our country, destroying lives and communities. In 2022, the DEA seized over 379 million doses of fentanyl – enough to kill every single American. House Republicans passed H.R. 2 to secure our border but President Biden refuses to take action,” said Majority Leader Steve Scalise. “I want to thank Reps. Morgan Griffith and Bob Latta for bringing forward the HALT Fentanyl Act to permanently schedule fentanyl related substances as a class I controlled substance to give our law enforcement the tools they need to protect Americans. House Republicans are committed to removing this poison from our streets, and this legislation is an important step in that commitment.”
“In my home district, 16 people died due to an overdose on fentanyl last year alone – including a two-year-old who accidentally ingested the drug. Fentanyl flowing through Joe Biden’s open borders is wreaking havoc in every single community across America, and I’m grateful for the leadership of Reps. Morgan Griffith and Bob Latta on providing a commonsense solution to keep this lethal drug off our streets,” said Majority Whip Tom Emmer.
“While Joe Biden has turned a blind eye to the catastrophic cost of his open border policies, House Republicans are committed to keeping our nation safe and getting illicit fentanyl off our streets. I applaud Congressmen Latta and Griffith, as well as the House Republicans on the Energy and Commerce Committee, for their tireless work to pass the HALT Fentanyl Act and lead the fight against illicit fentanyl which has intimately impacted my community and communities across the country,” said Conference Chair Elise Stefanik.
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