Blog Posts from Congressman Green

Myth vs. Fact: Debunking Democrat Delusions on the Fentanyl Crisis

Summary: Illicit fentanyl poisoning is now the leading cause of death for Americans aged 18-45 years old. It has killed hundreds of thousands of Americans since 2019. In fact, the amount of fentanyl seized at the border in FY 2023 alone is enough to kill the U.S. population over 9.5 times. Despite being one of the greatest threats to our national security, Democrats and the Biden administration continue to peddle myths that cover their failures to secure the border and protect Americans from this deadly crisis.

Myth: More fentanyl is seized at ports of entry than the rest of the Southwest Border. Therefore, we do not need to secure our Southwest Border.

FACT: Ports of entry are controlled environments while the Southwest border is thousands of miles of open territory, so it makes sense why more fentanyl is seized at the ports of entry. 

  • Drug cartels flood the border with migrants to tie up Border Patrol agents while they send fentanyl through different sections of the border. 
  • Over the course of 72 hours, 135 lbs. of fentanyl were seized between ports of entry. Just two milligrams are enough to make a deadly dose. 
  • With such a porous border, we do not know the full extent of how much fentanyl gets through.
  • Fentanyl deaths continue to skyrocket even as CBP’s technology at ports of entry becomes better at detecting fentanyl. This clearly means that drug cartels are targeting the wide cracks in our border to smuggle this deadly drug into the country. 

Myth: Fentanyl is just a border state issue.  

FACT: Every state is a border state because of the Biden administration’s border policies. 

  • My home state of Tennessee ranks number 5 in the country for overdose deaths, with fentanyl being the main driver. 
  • In Tennessee, there were 2,734 fentanyl deaths in 2021.
  • In North Carolina, there were 4,041 overdose deaths, 77 percent of which were related to fentanyl.
  • In New York, there were 4,946 opioid deaths—much of which is attributed to fentanyl.

Myth: This doesn’t impact the average American. It is simply a demand problem perpetuated by recreational drug users.

FACT: The majority of deaths from fentanyl are due to fentanyl poisoning, which means that people are often unknowingly taking drugs that are secretly laced with fentanyl. 

  • Many of the people killed by fentanyl pills are not taking them recreationally. 
  • A baby in Florida died after exposure to fentanyl while staying in a vacation rental.
  • “Rainbow” fentanyl—fentanyl disguised as candy—targeted teens and young adults.

Myth: The driver of fentanyl is isolated to the Western Hemisphere. If we just have enough programs in Latin America, we can eliminate the problem of fentanyl.

FACT: China is the primary supplier of the chemicals used to produce illicit fentanyl that kills Americans. 

  • China produces and transports these narcotic precursors to the transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) that produce fentanyl and smuggle it across our border. 
  • Some officials have estimated that roughly 90% of fentanyl is sourced from China. 
  • China supplies the precursor chemicals and pill presses while the cartels make and distribute it, and Americans pay the price.

Myth: The Biden administration is prioritizing the fentanyl crisis. 

FACT: President Biden and Democrats have abdicated their duty to protect Americans from one of our country's deadliest crises.

  • In 2021 alone, the Biden administration eliminated numerous successful border security policies, thereby allowing fentanyl to flow across the border freely.
  • Democrats refuse to publicly acknowledge the extent of this crisis and refuse to accept common-sense border policies to combat it. 
  • President Biden has not confronted China about its deep involvement in the crisis or sought to hold them accountable.

SOLUTIONSince the Biden administration and Democrats have punted on their duty to protect and secure our nation, my colleagues and I have introduced a comprehensive border package that would tackle the fentanyl crisis head-on. H.R. 2, the Secure the Border Act, would strengthen enforcement at the border, stop cartels from profiting off of human trafficking, and would hire an additional 3,000 Border Patrol agents to protect our nation.