The opioid crisis is “not a good combination” for a Trump administration, Vice President Mike Pence said in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on Friday.
“I think it’s going to be a perfect storm,” Pence said.
“You have the president of the United States who’s not doing anything for you, and the president who’s going around telling the world, ‘You’ve got to stop doing it.'”
Pence also warned that the opioid epidemic could lead to a “civil war” in America.
Trump is “very clear that he wants to put America first,” Pence told CNN.
“And he’s going after the opioid problem because he’s so passionate about it.
The vice president said he believes Trump has been working with the opioid czar, Dr. Robert Califf, and other senior administration officials to address the crisis. “
But I think there’s a lot of other issues, a lot more at stake than just the opioid situation,” he added.
The vice president said he believes Trump has been working with the opioid czar, Dr. Robert Califf, and other senior administration officials to address the crisis.
Pence, however, said he didn’t see the president “talking to anybody about, ‘Let’s do something about this,'” including his own Cabinet members.
“We’ve seen a lot over the last several months, and a lot, but we haven’t seen anybody talking to anybody to try to get them to say, ‘Look, let’s start thinking about this.'”
Califf has been a central figure in Trump’s “war on drugs” and his efforts to cut down on opioid deaths.
Pence said he was encouraged by the vice president’s comments, and encouraged Trump to join the fight.
“My hope is that he will join us,” Pence continued.
Pence’s remarks come just one day after Trump told The New York Times that the drug war was the worst thing to happen to the country in decades. “
So I think it would be a good thing for him to do, because he can bring more support to the fight.”
Pence’s remarks come just one day after Trump told The New York Times that the drug war was the worst thing to happen to the country in decades.
Trump told the Times he thought “that maybe we need to go back to the days when we were fighting drugs with a gun and that’s what we did.”
“The president said the drugs are the worst problem we have in this country.
“They are a terrible, horrible problem.” “
When I heard that, I thought that maybe we should go back,” Trump told Times columnist Nicholas Kristof.
“They are a terrible, horrible problem.”
Pence also reiterated his opposition to President Trump’s plan to reinstate a ban on importing fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that has become more prevalent in recent years.
Trump’s administration has not yet indicated whether the president will implement a federal fentanyl ban.
Pence also defended the Trump-appointed U.S. trade representative, Michael Froman, saying the former trade representative “is going to take us forward on trade,” adding that he’s “working on some new things” with the administration.