U.S. Attorney General Launches Opioid Fighting Strategy in Maine

7/19/18, Maine First Media Staff Report,

Unites States Attorney General, Jeff Session was in Portland last Friday, where he launched President Donald Trump’s Operation Synthetic Opioid Surge.

The plan is the latest in the President and Department of Justice’s attempts to crack down on the deadly opioid abuse ravaging our great country.

Before announcing Operation SOS, AG Session spoke with local law enforcement officers about the challenges they face fighting the opioid epidemic. Officers brought to the Attorney General’s attention the problem of opioids coming from out of state and infecting the Pine Tree State.

“I’m honored to be with our fellow prosecutors here to make an announcement about our commitment, our fight against the opioid epidemic,” A.G. Sessions said.
Sessions pointed out that while Maine has a relatively low crime rate, it’s one of the top areas in the country for overdose death rates.
“Sadly, Maine knows the tragic consequences of death and addiction too well,” Sessions said. “With a rate nearly double the national average, Maine is in the top ten states for overdose deaths, and it’s only rising. Maine is breaking record after tragic record just like the country as a whole is breaking.”
In 2017, 418 people in Maine died from overdoses — an 11% increase from 2016. Further demonstrating the trend, overdose deaths were up 40% in 2016 compared to the prior year.
Driving the increase was an uptick in deaths from opioids, cocaine and methamphetamines.
But the most significant increase came in lives lost to fentanyl — a 27% increase from 2016.
Nearly a third of the victims (31%) had Narcan in their systems. That means someone had unsuccessfully tried to revive the victim.
The opioid epidemic is destroying lives, families and communities in Maine. For example, in Portland — where the conference was held — the 57 deadly drug overdoses from 2017 represent more than one victim every week.
However, Sessions says President Trump is committed to ending the Opioid Epidemic in America and has made it one of the top priorities of his presidency.
“The President sent us an Executive order,” Sessions said. “He can send a pretty clear order sometimes, and this one was ‘reduce crime in America.’ So we embrace that. That is a worthwhile goal.”
However, the Department of Justice may have an uphill battle on their hands. As Sessions put it, the United States is facing the deadliest drug crisis in the history of our country. In fact, in 2016, 64,000 Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses.
“That’s twice the size of Bangor,” Sessions said. “And it’s nearly the size of Portland, Maine’s biggest city, dead in one year from overdoses.”
Sessions also pointed out the unfortunate reality that drug overdoses are now the number one killer of Americans under the age of 50.
That’s why President Trump had committed to spend at least $6-Billion fighting opioids and fentanyl.
“President Trump has made it clear that business-as-usual is over,” Sessions said. “Ending the drug crisis is a top priority of this administration and this Department of Justice.”
The Left’s answer to fighting the Opioid Epidemic consists of:
  • Pushing for more drug legalization;
  • Lessening sentences;
  • Free treatment — even if the addict doesn’t want it;
  • Free drugs to addicts;
  • Drug hotspots (often RV parks near residential areas or children’s parks) where it’s “safe to use;”
  • State-paid nurses administering injections.
Fortunately, the President’s plan does what Maine First Media has long called for, target the supply. Operation SOS creates ten new SOS districts including:
  • District of Maine;
  • Eastern District of California;
  • Eastern District of Kentucky;
  • District of New Hampshire;
  • Northern District of Ohio;
  • Southern District of Ohio;
  • Western District of Pennsylvania;
  • Eastern District of Tennessee;
  • Northern District of West Virginia;
  • Southern District of West Virginia.
The aim of each district is to drastically reduce the supply of drugs within the district. Additionally, each will have prosecutors solely dedicated to working fentanyl cases.
“We are going to arrest, prosecute, and convict fentanyl dealers and we are going to put them in jail,” Sessions said. “When it comes to synthetic opioids, there is no such thing as a small case.”
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid. It ranges from 30-50 times more potent than heroin. And it can be 50-100 times more potent than morphine. As little as two milligrams can be deadly.
And while serious adults were inside focusing on saving lives, families and communities — Democrat Senate candidate Zac Ringlestein, the Maine People’s Alliance, Muslim Activist Hamdia Ahmed, the Lewiston Democrat Party, Diane Russell and others led open-border radicals attempting to block the exits in protest.
The protestors chanted “abolish all police,” a solution sure to do wonders in combating Maine’s opioid overdose crisis.
Two Mainers and one woman from New York were arrested during the unhinged protest.
Maine First Media’s James Mosher was accosted by the Social Justice Agitators as he left the building. He has complete coverage of the protest — including some vile video — in this week’s Mosher Minutes.
You can watch highlights from A.G. Sessions press conference in the video at the top of this story.