House Democrats rejected several amendments in recent days that would have strengthened penalties for distributing fentanyl, as the deadly drug continues to spread havoc through the United States at record pace.
Last week, Democrats in the House Judiciary Committee blocked an amendment to H.R. 1693 that would have ensured that anyone convicted of fentanyl-related crimes would not receive a reduced sentence.
Among the Democrats who voted against the amendment were Rep. Jerry Nadler, Rep. Eric Swalwell, Rep. Lucy McBath, Rep. Cori Bush, and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee.
“Today at a @JudiciaryGOP Markup I intro’d an amendment that would maintain penalties for any form of cocaine containing fentanyl/fentanyl analogues,” Republican Congressman Scott Fitzgerald tweeted in response to the amendment failing. “Democrats wanted to kick the can down the road. Why are they doing nothing to stop the flow of this deadly drug into the U.S.?”
Fentanyl use in the United States has been directly tied to illegal immigration related to cartel influence from Mexico. Fox News reported last week that fentanyl seizures at the border have been surging — more than 1,000 pounds of fentanyl were seized at the border in June alone and seizures have risen 78% compared to last year.
In another recent vote, Democrats blocked an amendment to H.R. 4435 that would have allowed judges to increase sentencing to individuals involved in fraudulent immigration services if they are also involved in cartel activity. That amendment was opposed by every Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee.
Earlier this month, House Democrats also blocked an amendment that would prohibit funds from being used to implement a Biden executive order that would end contracts with privately owned detention facilities and redirect funds to the DEA to address the flood of Chinese fentanyl coming across the southern border.