Trump should declare OPIOIDS a National Emergency…

… and, include border barriers as one of the supporting actions.

First, the current lay of the land…

Pelosi is still declaring “I’ve been clear: No money for walls. Period”.

So, odds of the conference committee reporting out legislation that includes wall funding remain slim to none.

President Trump has threatened to declare the porousness of the southern border a National Emergency … under which he would have broad executive authority that would include funding and building people-crossing barriers in strategic locations.

Dems have already threatened to take a border-focused National Emergency Declaration to the uber-liberal 9th Circuit Court  where it would likely be enjoined.

The journey to the Supreme Court would take time … with slightly better than 50-50 odds of reinstatement

So, what should Trump do?


Here’s an idea that I haven’t heard any politicos or pundits pushing:

Simply put, Trump should escalate the opioid crisis from its current status as a National Health Emergency to a full-blown National Emergency with, as part of the program, border walls that funnel the flow of drugs to security-strengthened ports-of-entry.

Here’s my rationale …

1. National Emergency Declarations are neither few nor short-lived.

In fact, CNN reports that there are more than two dozen national emergencies enacted by Bush and Obama that are currently still active.

Bottom line: the precedents have already been set … and, repeatedly exercised.


2. Legislative concurrence is not required to for the declaration of a National Emergency.

“The President has the authority to declare an emergency if the President determines that the emergency falls within the primary responsibility of the United States exclusive or preeminent responsibility as governed by the United States Constitution or laws.”

But, Congress can rescind an emergency declaration via a so-called “joint resolution”.

A joint resolution must be passed by both the Senate and the Congress.  And, the President must sign the legislation.


3. Declarations of National Emergencies provide the President, by statute, broad authority to mobilize resources.

“Emergency presidential powers are dramatic, and range from suspending laws … to authorizing and constructing military construction projects using any existing defense appropriations for such military constructions.” Source


4. The Opioids Commission (chaired by Gov. Christie) recommended that opioids crisis be declared some type of National Emergency.

“The first and most urgent recommendation of this Commission is direct and completely within your control. Declare a national emergency under either the Public Health Service Act or the Stafford Act.” Source

Based on the Opioid Commission’s recommendation, President Trump  declared opioids to be a Public Health Emergency — making resources available for medical services intended to slow the use of opioids … and support treatment and recovery services. Source


5. There is widespread sentiment that dealing with the opioids crisis as public health emergency is inadequate and has not delivered satisfactory results.

A common refrain: “Now, a year later, what has the health emergency declaration accomplished? Not much, outside experts say” Source


6. Declaring the opioids crisis to be a National Emergency would be simply  an escalation of its current status as a Public Health Emergency.


Elevating opioids to a National Emergency would potentially  broaden the range of initiatives to include, among other things, border barriers intended to slow the flow of drugs into country … or channel the flow to security-enhanced ports-of entry.


7. The politics of opposing an opioids’ National  Emergency would likely preclude legal challenges.

Put simply: Who wants to oppose combatting the opioid crisis?


Follow on Twitter @KenHoma

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2 Responses to “Trump should declare OPIOIDS a National Emergency…”

  1. Charlie J Maguire Says:

    Excellent idea; politically AND practically! That last haul was enough to kill 1/3 of US population by overdose??!! I’d call that a National Emergency for sure!!

  2. What you need to know about the border wall bruhaha… | The Homa Files Says:

    […] See Trump should declare OPIOIDS a National Emergency… […]

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