President Donald Trump on Wednesday offered a rare and impassioned defense of the opioid epidemic, which he called the “greatest humanitarian crisis in the history of the world.”
The president, who has declared a national “War on Drugs,” said there was no need to talk about the opioid abuse epidemic because the drug is so readily available and so cheap, and he was proud to have made a historic promise to combat it.
Trump told the AP that he has been a strong supporter of the drug war, but he added, “I don of course have a handle on the truth about it.”
He said he has had “the highest standards” of honesty in his administration and he is proud of the results.
He added that it was the drug companies and drug companies that have profited from the drug epidemic and that they will continue to reap the profits.
“They’re doing a hell of a job.
The industry is in the toilet right now,” Trump said.”
I’m going to continue to fight against them because I don’t think it’s good for anybody.
I think it will be very bad for the country and bad for everybody.
The drug companies have done a hell to this country.””
It’s like the Great Depression,” Trump continued.
“It’s the greatest humanitarian crisis of the history in the world.
It’s a terrible tragedy.”
Trump’s comments were the latest in a series of public remarks by Trump that have come as the crisis has spilled into the United States and into the lives of black people.
In March, Trump tweeted that black Americans “are suffering much more than whites” from the opioid addiction epidemic and called the drug abuse “unfair.”
Trump also has repeatedly said he wants to reduce drug-related deaths, including deaths of young black men, and in September he told CNN’s “State of the Union” that “the drugs are going to be gone in a couple of years.”
The AP asked Trump on Thursday whether he was willing to admit that the drug industry profited when the U.S. government spent billions of dollars fighting the opioid problem, and whether he still believes in that policy.
“No,” Trump responded.
“You’re going to have to get to the bottom of it.
And I think that’s where I am right now.
I mean, I think we’re doing great.
I’m very proud of what we’re seeing.”
Trump has previously said that “some of the biggest drug cartels in the entire world are coming over here, and I’m really proud of that.”
“I think the drugs are gone,” he said in September.
“I mean, we’re in the worst economic recession since the 1930s.
I don of no idea how you can have such tremendous success.
I really don’t.”
The Drug Enforcement Administration has estimated that the nation’s drug abuse crisis cost $20 trillion in the last three decades, according to the Associated Press.
Trump has repeatedly cited the drug crisis as the reason he is in such a deep financial hole, and the president’s remarks come as Republicans in Congress have tried to move forward with a budget deal that includes an increase in funding for opioid prevention and treatment.