Washington State Governor, Democrat Jay Inslee, announced he would call for a special session of the state legislature to pass a bill decriminalizing drug possession, including deadly fentanyl, after the current law was struck down by the State’s Supreme Court. The Governor believes the bill can be passed in a bipartisan manner. However, this effort was already unsuccessful in the last legislative session.
Legislators still need to approve a Blake fix so I'll be calling for a special session to begin May 16. Details are still being negotiated, but caucus leaders share the desire to pass a bill and I am very optimistic.https://t.co/AWPHdhE3By #waleg
— Governor Jay Inslee (@GovInslee) May 3, 2023
In 2021, the State Supreme Court ruled that felony conviction for passive drug possession violates the legislature’s power. The lawmakers temporarily made small drug possession a misdemeanor and face a July deadline to pass a new bill or decriminalize drug possession altogether, which would include fentanyl.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced plans to call a special legislative session this month to pass a new drug possession law that, if not passed, could lead to the legalization of all drug possession in the state https://t.co/4XIx5csYVk
— CNN (@CNN) May 3, 2023
Fentanyl overdoses have skyrocketed, almost four times since 2016, with an increasing number of lethal overdoses. House Republicans proposed legislation that includes accountability for non-violent drug offenses, treatment opportunities for those who are willing, and stronger penalties for those who refuse to comply, but the bill did not pass.
It is unbelievable that Washington Democrats want to make it legal to possess a deadly drug like fentanyl. There is no doubt that this drug will continue to take more lives if nothing is done about it. Fentanyl, unlike marijuana, is a dangerous and deadly drug to handle, which is why tougher penalties must be enforced. By failing to properly punish drug offenders, the state sends the message that it is acceptable to use and abuse drugs, leading to more dangerous and potentially lethal outcomes.
It is unacceptable that Democrats prioritize drug users over public health and safety, and they are willing to trust drug addicts to make decisions that can ruin their lives or even result in death. The Republican party is ready to support legislation that provides accurate solutions by holding drug addicts accountable for their actions. Any Republicans who support a bill that falls short of implementing accountability for drug users will not be helping the situation.