Blackburn missed real opportunities to address the opioid crisis while collecting campaign contributions from pharmaceutical companies

March 16, 2018 (NASHVILLE, Tenn.) — After Rep. Marsha Blackburn touted yesterday that’s she’s signing on as a co-sponsor of CARA 2.0, legislation meant to curb the opioid epidemic, Tennessee Democratic Party Chair Mary Mancini released the following statement:

“Marsha Blackburn isn’t fooling anyone. Tennesseans know that when their families and communities were being torn apart by addiction, and there was still time to act, Marsha Blackburn was working to protect pharmaceutical companies instead of holding them accountable. If Rep. Blackburn was serious, she would give back the more than $700,000 in campaign contributions she has taken from the pharmaceutical industry.”

Background:

  • In October 2017, Congressman Blackburn admitted that her cosponsorship of another piece of legislation, the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act, may have produced “unintended consequences” in exacerbating the opioid epidemic. According to an investigation by the Washington Post, this law made it nearly impossible for the DEA to freeze suspicious narcotic shipments from companies.
  • The only reason she’s sponsoring the CARA 2.0 Act of 2018 is because she’s running for the U.S. Senate and has been criticized across Tennessee (Commercial Appeal, Knoxville News Sentinel, Tennessean) this week for how little she’s done to address the opioid epidemic while receiving more than $700,000 in campaign contributions from the pharmaceutical industry since 2002.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:

Amanda Yanchury

615.270.9468

amanda@tndp.org