Congressman Rick Nolan

Representing the 8th District of Minnesota
Facebook icon
Twitter icon
Flickr icon
YouTube icon
RSS icon

Repeal This Law!

Oct 24, 2017
the Monday Report

Congress Must Repeal a Bad Law Fueling America’s Opioid Crisis

Union members protest pharmaceutical company profits from opioid shipments that fall into the wrong hands.

Dear Andrea,

Opioid pain killer abuse kills some 33,000 Americans every year, and I’m strongly supporting legislation to immediately repeal a bad law that has made the opioid crisis even worse. Under the guise of ensuring adequate supplies to patients who actually require these powerful medications, the 2016 law has made it tougher for federal enforcement agencies to crack down on drug companies and distributors that ship opioids illegally to turn huge profits.

According to a blockbuster investigation by the Washington Post and 60 Minutes, these shipments have flooded areas of the Nation hardest hit by the opioid abuse epidemic. So in addition to repealing the 2016 law, our new measure restores the federal Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) full authority to suspend the licenses of unscrupulous distributors of opioids and other prescription drugs. 

Last week, President Trump’s nominee to be the Nation’s “Drug Czar,” Republican Congressman Tom Marino, was forced to withdraw from consideration following news reports that he had received substantial campaign contributions from the pharmaceutical industry while helping lead the 2016 measure to passage by the House.

In fact, according to the Post-60 Minutes report, the pharmaceutical industry spent more than $100 million lobbying Congress and delivering campaign contributions between 2014 and 2016. This is just one more example of the toxic effects of special interest money on our public policymaking process. That’s why my Restore Democracy legislation calls for getting toxic special interest money out of politics. We need to restore integrity to a system that has increasingly become rigged for the rich and powerful.

As this opioid situation so clearly illustrates, bad public policy fueled by special interests and their campaign dollars not only hurts our Nation – but can also cost lives. The American people deserve better from their elected leaders.

We will keep you posted as events proceed. Meanwhile, I want to hear your thoughts. Feel free to contact any of our offices listed below or send me an email.


The full letter is available HERE.