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West Virginia leaders react to Trump Opioid Plan

21 March 2018

Trump previously mentioned the possibility of the death penalty for drug trafficking during a Pennsylvania campaign rally for Republican congressional candidate Rick Saccone, who, according to preliminary results, lost to Democrat Conor Lamb last week. "And I think that we can find a different way to structure penalties and those things to go after drug dealers", said Del. "If we don't get tough on the drug dealers, we're wasting our time".

The push for greater use of the death penalty is just part of a sweeping plan that includes stiffer penalties for drug peddlers as well as expanding access to treatment and recovery efforts.

"Toughness is the thing that they most fear", Trump said.

He added: "Other countries don't play games".

"I don't. We've found that we've been hard on drugs and hard on drug dealers for 50 or 60 years now".

Snow, freezing rain to impact Bismarck, Mandan
While today will witness cloudy conditions with spells of rain, tomorrow will see rain become persistent in most areas. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches is possible in the Charlottesville area by Wednesday afternoon.

"The death penalty is uncertain as a constitutionally permissible punishment without that connection to an intentional killing", Berman said.

Some professors have spoken on the matter such as Cornell Law School Professor John H. Blume, who stated that this move will not affect the "kingpins" of the drug trade, but rather the poor minorities who are low- to mid-level drug dealers. Dick Durbin of IL, who said "we can't arrest our way out of the opioid epidemic" and noted that "the war on drugs didn't work in the '80s". Opioid drugs ranging from prescription pain pills to fentanyl killed more than 42,000 Americans during 2016.

Much of what Trump highlighted Monday was largely repackaged ideas he's already endorsed. He announced a new website,, where members of the public can share stories about the dangers of opioid addiction.

Speaking at an event focused on the opioid epidemic in New Hampshire, Trump said it was critical to "get tough" on combating the epidemic. "We're going to cut nationwide opioid prescriptions by one-third over the next three years", Trump said. The Washington Post published the transcripts. Retiring Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., a persistent Trump critic, visited New Hampshire, which holds the nation's first presidential primary, last week.

West Virginia leaders react to Trump Opioid Plan