Rep. Boebert proposes classifying fentanyl as a weapon of mass destruction

U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert
Courtesy photo
By the numbers • In 2021, over 80,000 Americans died from opioids, including fentanyl.
• One American dies of fentanyl every eight-and-a-half minutes.
• Last year, more than 900 Coloradans died from fentanyl.
• Fentanyl is the leading cause of death for Americans aged 18 to 45.
• In just the first five months of 2022, law enforcement seized two million doses of fentanyl in Colorado, which is more than what was seized in all of 2021. Source: Rep. Lauren Boebert's office

Citing rising overdose deaths, U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colorado, is seeking to have fentanyl classified as a weapon of mass destruction.

“Back home in Colorado, almost everyone I talk to knows someone who has died from fentanyl,” Boebert said in a statement. “Fentanyl is America’s silent killer and is now the leading cause of death for Americans aged 18 to 45. The saddest thing about the fentanyl crisis is that it is preventable.”

Boebert added that the vast majority of fentanyl in the U.S. comes across the Southern border, and border patrol agents seized enough fentanyl last year to kill every American seven times over.

“There is no way around it — the Biden Border Crisis is killing Americans,” Boebert continued. “It is time to call fentanyl what it is: a weapon of mass destruction that is destroying our nation.”

According to Boebert’s office, the proposed legislation would list fentanyl as a weapon of mass destruction and direct the Department of Homeland Security’s Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office to allocate resources to stopping the flow of the drug, which is up to 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine.

Boebert’s office explained that the legislation would also increase interagency coordination to stop fentanyl from coming over the border and increase resources for technology development, such as sensors to detect fentanyl.

The congresswoman’s proposal would only target the illicit use of fentanyl and not interfere with legal, medical use of fentanyl.

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