Bipartisan senators from the House and Senate are preparing to present a new bill that would give the Pentagon the authority to use novel tactics expressly designed to attack Mexican drug cartels. The proposed legislation would attempt to identify fentanyl as a serious national security problem.
Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA) along with Joni Ernst (R-IA) confirmed to the Washington Examiner this week that they are working on a measure that will use their oversight power inside the Dept. of Defense to press the federal government to take stronger action against transnational criminal groups operating in Mexico that traffic fentanyl throughout the southern border.
The Pentagon would be forced to develop a focused plan to stop the trafficking of fentanyl under the proposed law, called the Disrupt Fentanyl Trafficking Act. This plan would include developing a direct working relationship with the Mexican military and stepping up security activities alongside Mexico.
“We must scale up right away to address this national security threat,” Ernst told the Examiner, “because the number of lives lost in Iowa and throughout the nation as a result of this lethal substance has far outstripped the federal government’s response. With the help of Mexico, this bipartisan effort will fight fentanyl trafficking and utilize the Pentagon’s resources to save American lives.”
“The United States must cooperate with Mexico to combat fentanyl trafficking throughout our southern border,” said Kaine. “If we want to avoid further tragedies. This partisan, commonsense legislation would assist us in developing the most effective plan for achieving that.”
Representatives Stephanie Bice (R-OK) along with Salud Carbajal (D-CA), who will sponsor the measure in the House, backed Ernst and Kaine. The bulk of fentanyl that enters the United States originates from Mexico, but the precursor chemicals needed to make this powerful narcotic arrive from China and are then sent to Mexican producers.
Sens. Ernst and Kaine stressed the significance of involving Mexico’s government as a full partner in the battle against fentanyl, given that the country’s southern neighbor has failed to do so over the previous five years.
Author: Steven Sinclaire