06.11.19

Senator David Perdue: Time To Put Drug Cartels Out Of Business

“If a cartel was sending a cruise missile into Dallas, Texas, and killing 70,000 people, I think our response would be just a little less measured than it is today.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control, today questioned Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about the United States’ efforts to counter the global narcotics epidemic and put drug cartels out of business. More than 70,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2017.

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drug caucus

Transcript:

Senator Perdue: “Having worked in Mexico and Central America, I can tell you the cartels are really still the problem. This week, in my state of Georgia alone, we’ll lose 40 people to overdose. At half a trillion dollars, $500 billion, that makes the cartel business worldwide bigger than Walmart. This cartel business is larger than our largest company. I was just down at the Southern Border, out on patrol with our Customs and Border Protection officers, and they are doing a fantastic job. They’re just overwhelmed – 140,000 people apprehended this month. If a cartel was sending a cruise missile into Dallas, Texas, and killing 70,000 people, I think our response would be just a little less measured than it is today. What else can we do to put these cartels out of business?”

Secretary Pompeo: “I believe it takes a sustained effort from across the United States government and, importantly, sustained effort from our partner countries. … We took down the caliphate because we took down the piece of real estate. That raises the cost for them to act in ways that are harmful to the United States. We have to act with that same rigor.”

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*Updated to reflect worldwide drug trafficking figures.