Ashley Moody: Fentanyl Crisis Requires Drug Czar

Ashley Moody: Fentanyl Crisis Requires Drug Czar

Grayson Bakich
Grayson Bakich
December 20, 2022

With the fentanyl crisis potentially worsening with the coming expiration of Title 42, Florida AG Ashley Moody is demanding action. In a recent letter to the Biden administration, Moody calls for the restoration of Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to a cabinet-level position. "I’m calling on @JoeBiden to reinstate the drug czar position as a cabinet-level post. Fentanyl continues to drive the national opioid crisis, and tens of thousands of Americans are dying each year. It’s time he takes this threat seriously," Moody tweets.

In the letter, Moody notes that the ONDCP Director originally was a Cabinet position, though it was removed in 2009 under the Obama administration. Additionally, she lambasts Biden for failing to discuss the fentanyl issue with China, who manufactures the substance. Smugglers then bring it into the US through the southern border.

Moody scathingly says near the end of the letter that "if you continue to refuse to address this issue on an international level—where certainly ground could be gained—at least step aside and allow a qualified drug czar the authority to act in the best interests of Americans at home."

Finally, she cites the specific incident we reported last week concerning Tavares police officer Courtney Bannick. As we covered, Bannick appears to overdose after coming into contact with fentanyl seized from a driver she stopped.

However, after FOX 35 Orlando delivered the footage to Dr. Lewis Nelson and Dr. Andrew Stolbach, who are top-level toxicology experts, their analysis suggests Bannick's behavior is inconsistent with a fentanyl overdose. This does not suggest Bannick's story is false or fabricated, for Nelson is quoted as saying, "I don’t think anyone’s trying to pull a fast one here. I think people really feel they are exposed because that’s what they’ve been told happens."

Still, the doctors say Bannick's fellow officers did the right thing administering Narcan as a safety precaution.

Rep. Anna Eskamani (SD-47) tweets the FOX 35 article's conclusion, which says "“Both doctors hope this can be a teaching moment for many including law enforcement about fentanyl. They want people to know it’s safe to come in contact with fentanyl and jump in to help someone overdosing.”"

Nonetheless, the incident still proves the point of Ashley Moody's letter that the fentanyl crisis is truly severe and requires a national plan of action.

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Grayson Bakich

Grayson Bakich

Florida born and raised, Grayson Bakich is a recent recipient of a Master’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Central Florida. His thesis examined recent trends in political polarization and how this leads into justification of violence.

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