SOUTH CAROLINA (WCSC) - United States Senator Lindsey Graham plans to unveil legislation to help fight the opioid epidemic along with Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas.
The legislation will ensure penalties for fentanyl distribution and trafficking better reflect the nature of the crime, according to a press release. The press release also says fentanyl, a fully synthetic opioid, is 100 times more powerful than morphine and has been a driving force behind the opioid epidemic in the United States.
"Fentanyl is one of the most deadly drugs on the market and I look forward to working with Senator Cotton to substantially increase penalties for those who traffic this horrific drug," Graham said. "I'll also be working with Senator Cotton and others to explore the possibility of even stronger penalties—that could include the death penalty if the fentanyl results in someone's death—for those who choose to push this deadly drug into our communities. Increasing these mandatory minimums is well-justified."
Specifically, the bill will reduce the amount of fentanyl required for mandatory sentencing minimums to apply in distribution cases. It will also provide resources to the Post Office to stop shipments of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids arriving from overseas, according to the release.