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Ernst Introduces Bill to Make Distribution of Deadly Fentanyl Chargeable as Felony Murder

WASHINGTON – As fentanyl continues to pour over the Southern border, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) joined her colleagues, led by Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) in introducing the Felony Murder for Deadly Fentanyl Distribution Act. The bill makes the distribution of fentanyl resulting in death punishable by federal felony murder charges.

“A wide-open Southern border has fueled a fentanyl epidemic in this country. The dealers and distributors of this deadly drug must be held accountable, and that’s what we’re fighting to do,” said Ernst. “This effort will impose felony murder charges for people who willingly distribute this lethal opioid to unknowing recipients.”

“Fentanyl is killing Americans at a record high. This deadly drug is widespread throughout our country and has left no community untouched,” said Rubio. “This bill would make drug dealers pay the price for selling deadly fentanyl.”

Illicit use of fentanyl is now the leading cause of death among Americans aged 18-45. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, drug dealers are increasingly targeting children and young people with fentanyl pills made to look like candy. Ernst and Rubio were joined by Senators Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), and Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) in cosponsoring the bill.