As the government faces an impending shutdown on September 30, the Biden administration has called out House Republicans to “meet their responsibility” and help to stop the opioid crisis and avoid a government shutdown.
White House Press Secretary Andrew Bates made the administration’s thoughts clear when he addressed the Republican representatives.
“Now, House Republicans have a stark choice to make: will they honor their word, meet their responsibility to avoid a shutdown, and act on life and death priorities like fighting the fentanyl crisis?” said Bates.
The Biden administration has been heavily focused on the opioid crisis, specifically fentanyl.
The deadly drug has been linked to 100,000 deaths in 2022. Moreover, the current administration has even spent hundreds of millions of dollars in funding to address the crisis.
Fentanyl is often smuggled through the border, which has caused many to tie the border crisis to the opioid crisis.
“President Biden is urging Congress to provide $800 million to fight fentanyl trafficking and counter the deadly substance being illegally imported from China,” said the press secretary.
Despite the Biden administration’s efforts to combat the smuggling of the drug, Republican lawmakers have found errors in the process.
As Bates stated, the drug comes from China. However, it is primarily created and pressed into pills in Mexico.
The Biden administration is attempting to fight the smuggling and the addiction, yet Republicans believe that the problem could be more effectively stopped at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Texas Representative Dan Crenshaw (R) expressed his frustration with the President and his administration’s handling of the issue.
“Happy to come to the White House to discuss how we take on the Mexican drug cartels responsible for trafficking fentanyl and poisoning Americans. Let me know what time works for you @POTUS.”
Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) has often lauded his program, Operation Lone Star, which addresses the border crisis.
“Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), and the Texas National Guard are continuing to work together to secure the border; stop the smuggling of drugs, weapons, and people into Texas; and prevent, detect, and interdict transnational criminal behavior between ports of entry.”
However, many Democrats have criticized the Texas governor’s efforts labelling them as cruel.
Texas Representative Joaquin Castro (D) led a group of over 80 House members calling on President Biden to intervene in “Operation Lone Star”.
“We write to express our profound alarm over border policies instituted by Texas Governor Greg Abbott that are putting asylum-seekers at serious risk of injury and death, interfering with federal immigration enforcement, infringing on private property rights, and violating U.S. treaty commitments with Mexico,” said the House members.