Morrisey Highlights Sen. Manchin’s Hypocrisy on Opioid Crisis

Manchin was for drug bill before he was against it

Harpers Ferry, WV – Patrick Morrisey’s U.S. Senate campaign released evidence demonstrating that Senator Joe Manchin’s negligence and legislative record helped fuel the opioid crisis in West Virginia. In classic Washington hypocrisy, Sen. Manchin is now backpedalling furiously, desperate to cover his tracks.

Last year, Sen. Manchin voted for S. 483, a bill that made it easier to flood the West Virginia market with opioids. The Washington Post and CBS “60 Minutes” published reports demonstrating that the bill was a tool “to weaken aggressive DEA enforcement efforts against drug distribution companies that were supplying corrupt doctors and pharmacists who peddled narcotics to the black market.”

Now, in typical D.C. fashion, Sen. Manchin is reversing his position, urging his colleagues to repeal the bill he previously voted YES on. (Washington Examiner, 10/16/17) (CBS News, 10/16/17)

The most galling aspect of Sen. Manchin’s latest flip-flop is his blatant negligence as West Virginia governor 2005-2010. Manchin oversaw an explosive increase in the number of dangerous opioids flooding into the state and overdose related deaths occurring on his watch.

“Sen. Manchin failed West Virginia while out state was flooded with dangerous pills and families lost loved ones to addiction,” Patrick Morrisey said. “Since 2013, my office has worked tirelessly to clean up the mess Sen. Manchin and Washington has caused, attacking substance abuse on every front.”

As Attorney General, Morrisey and his office have launched an aggressive campaign against substance abuse up and down the pharmaceutical supply chain – from manufacturers to wholesalers, to pharmacies, to doctors:

  • Morrisey’s office launched the first ever substance abuse fighting unit in West Virginia
  • Morrisey’s office reached the largest pharmaceutical settlement in state history – $47 million for 12 wholesalers (National Review, 02/14/17)
  • Morrisey’s best practices initiative is recognized around the country (West Virginia Record, 05/17/16) (The Register-Herald, 09/01/16)
  • Morrisey’s office created a new faith-based drug initiative to help ensure there are more substance abuse treatment options in the state (US News, 06/07/17)
  • Morrisey’s office launched the first ever joint-partnership with the Northern District U.S. Attorney’s office which has led to the successful prosecution of many drug dealers (Register-Herald, 02/10/17)
  • Morrisey’s office is leading a 37-state effort to convince insurance companies to change the incentives that encourage doctors to prescribe addictive opioids (The Intelligencer, 09/26/17)

Morrisey has been praised for his aggressive fight against substance abuse:

  • “No state official has been more effective in the struggle against drug abuse. Morrisey’s office has gone after drug companies for their misbehavior.” (The Martinsburg Journal, 10/15/16)
  • “Patrick Morrisey: Leading the state in the fight against drug abuse” (The Exponent Telegram, 06/12/16)
  • “He has been among the most active state officials in battling drug abuse in multiple ways.” (The Inter-Mountain, 09/13/16)
  • “W.Va. attorney general leading crusade against opioid abuse” (Cumberland Times-News, 06/20/16)