The Opioid Crisis and Susan Collins

Collins (2)

Nearly 60,000 each year. That is the number of American lives lost each year directly related to the opioid crisis. Every politician lies. Like Donald Trump, some lie more than others.

Susan Collins was once a respected Republican Senator from Maine. She was considered to be a rare member from the right side of the aisle who would do the right thing. Beginning with her support of a sexual predator and beer guzzling Trump nominee for the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh, her reputation has greatly diminished. A recent poll reveals that she is the least respected senator; surpassing the worst senator in American history, Moscow Mitch McConnell.

Collins continues to make her situation worse.

Trump has done nothing to solve our nation’s biggest health problem; opioid addiction, which often leads to the use of heroin and all too frequently the death of a man, woman, or child from an overdose. When information surfaced that Collins was taking money from the opioid manufacturers, she denied the allegation. After extensive research, it was confirmed that she is lying.

In 2007 Collins received $2,300 from Jonathan Sackler, former vice president and son of the former head of Purdue Pharmaceuticals. That was just months before Purdue was forced to pay a $600 million fine for misleading regulators, doctors, and patients about the addictive nature of OxyContin.

The Maine Beacon, a project of the Maine People’s Alliance, reports “Eli Lilly’s PAC has given Collins at least $5,000 and their lobbyist, Leigh Ann Pusey, gave the maximum donation of $2,700 to Collins in 2018. She also gave at least $2,000 to Collins’ political action committee, ‘Dirigo PAC.'”

Here’s what she told a constituent, Maine’s People Alliance co-director Amy Halsted, about the Sackler donation: “That’s not true. That’s not true. So, where did you hear that? From the Sacklers? No, I have not. […] Never. No, no. So, I think you should check your sources.”

Sadly, it has become the norm for Republican politicians to lie and deny the facts.

Collins is up for reelection in November. Maine is a very conservative state, but the people are also well-informed and demand honesty from their representatives in Washington.

Let’s tell the absolute truth. The real Republican Party; the party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Dwight Eisenhower; has not existed for decades. With the beginning of the Reagan administration the right-wing began to move to the extreme right. Honest deliberation and eventual compromise divided our government and the American people. When Bill Clinton became our president Newt Gingrich and his cronies spent most of their time attempting to discredit our 42nd president. They finally succeeded in impeaching him for a very disappointing and foolish sexual act in the Oval Office. Even more upsetting is the fact that Moscow Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, and other old, white Republicans escalated these purely political actions in 2009 after President Obama became our 44th president. Moscow Mitch created the “party of no.”

When Trump, Moscow Mitch and Lyin Paul Ryan attempted to repeal Obamacare and replace it with a hastily written bill which would have removed all healthcare from more than 20 million Americans, three Republican senators were needed to halt the process. It gave me hope when Lisa Murkowski, John McCain, and Susan Collins voted “no.”

The last real Republican, John McCain, left us in 2018. Murkowski and Collins surrendered to Trump and Moscow Mitch. There is no longer a Republican Party; it has been replaced by the ‘Trump Party.’ The once “Grand Old Party” no longer exists. These men and women have become the enemy of the American people.

“The Truth Lives Here”

Op-ed by James Turnage


My eighth novel, “TALES FROM BENEATH THE SHEETS,” can be downloaded to the free Kindle app; CLICK HERE

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