Tired of “talking and doing nothing,” President Trump said Monday the U.S. should adopt a zero-tolerance approach to opioids that includes execution of some drug dealers, vowing it would crush the problem fast.
Speaking in New Hampshire, where during the 2016 campaign he vowed to tackle opioids, Mr. Trump said the federal government is “pouring a lot of money and a lot of talent” into the problem, from expanding access to overdose-reversing naloxone to expanding treatment options.
But Mr. Trump said countries that threaten dealers with the ultimate penalty don’t have a drug problem, so his approach will work, though White House and Justice Department officials said current law only provides for execution in limited, high-level drug cases.
“If we don’t get very tough on these dealers, it’s not going to happen, folks. It’s not going to happen, and I want to win this battle,” he said.
Drug policy experts and advocates say Mr. Trump is reviving “failed policies” that authoritarian strongmen like Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte employ.
“These sentences do not reduce or stop drug trafficking, and in fact often they have the opposite effect.
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