Democrat blasts Trump for late drug control plan: ‘Absolutely inexcusable’

A House Democrat on Thursday blasted the Trump administration for failing to release a drug control strategy in 2017 or 2018, even as tens of thousands of Americans were dying from drug overdoses.

“It is absolutely inexcusable that the administration did not bother to issue a National Drug Control Strategy during the first two years that he was in office,” Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., said during a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing.

“More than 70,000 Americans have died from drug overdoses in 2017 alone,” she said. “As many as 140,000 Americans have died from overdoses in the first two years of the Trump administration.”

Maloney also slammed Office of National Drug Control Policy Director James W. Carroll Jr. for failing to outline in a 200-page document an interagency plan of action to address the flow of illegal drugs into the country. Carroll started his current job a year ago, and in January, he submitted a 24-page document about the office’s strategy.

“After two years of having no strategy, the administration finally released one,” Maloney said.

Lawmakers, including former Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., said the full, detailed strategy is needed.

Chairman Elijah Cummings asked Carroll to return to the committee in no more than 60 days to prove he has given the Government Accountability Office access to metrics and its documents.