McMorris Rodgers Helps Advance Five Life-Saving Bills to Full Committee

Legislation Would Help Secure the Border, Curb the Fentanyl Crisis, and Stop Discrimination Against People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C. — Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today led the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee in marking up and advancing five life-saving bills to the full committee for consideration, including: 

NOTE: These five pieces of legislation will now move to the full House Energy and Commerce Committee for further markup. If they pass the full committee, then they could move to the House Floor for a vote. 

Cathy delivered the following opening remarks at today’s markup. Excerpts and highlights are below:

Fighting the Fentanyl Crisis:

“More people than ever are dying of fentanyl poisonings. As many parents have appealed to us, this requires urgent action. Moms like Molly Cain deserve justice. We must secure the border and do everything in our power to make sure law enforcement has the tools they need to seize fentanyl and fentanyl-related substances.

[…]

“The HALT Fentanyl Act would permanently place fentanyl-related substances into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act and make sure law enforcement can keep these weapons-grade poisons off our streets.

“DEA testified just last month that permanently scheduling fentanyl-related substances in Schedule I is their number-one legislative priority and in our field hearing in McAllen, we all heard and saw why.

Securing the Southern Border:

“The Securing the Border for Public Health Act would expand current Title 42 authority to be used to stop the import of certain controlled substances, including fentanyl and fentanyl-related substances.

“I want to be very clear. The Biden administration cannot let the emergency scheduling expire and it should not lift Title 42. If the Biden administration continues its open border agenda, Mexican cartels like the one that just kidnapped four Americans and killed two of them, will be even more emboldened.

[…]

 “The opioid epidemic was fueled, in part, by suspiciously large shipments of controlled substances being delivered across the country–particularly in the Appalachian region.

“[The Block, Report, And Suspend Suspicious Shipments Act] would help stop this practice and save lives by requiring drug manufacturers and distributors that discover a suspicious order for controlled substances to halt the order and report the information to DEA.”

Protecting the 9-8-8 Lifeline:

“Additionally, the 9-8-8 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline suffered a cyberattack and was shut down for several hours late last year. This lifeline is a critical tool that provides support and hope to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. We don’t yet know the magnitude of the individuals impacted by the outage, but we must make sure that it doesn’t happen again.

[…]

“…the 9-8-8 Lifeline Cybersecurity Responsibility Act…requires coordination and reporting to improve cybersecurity protections for the 9-8-8 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.”

Banning Discriminatory QALY Practices

“Lastly, regarding my legislation to ban the use of Quality Adjusted Life Years–or QALYs–and other similar measures by state and federal government health care programs.

“More than 70 disability and patient organizations agree that QALYs are discriminatory and have no place in our decision making.

“Imagine having to beg the government for a drug for your son with a progressive disease. Imagine being told by the government his life isn’t worth the cost of his medication. Or being told your child with Down syndrome has a life less worthy of saving and therefore the government won’t cover the cost of an organ transplant.

“The federal government can evaluate the effectiveness of treatments and cures without devaluing the lives of seniors and people with disabilities.”

[…]

 “For those in despair, we are offering hope.”

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