Washington, D.C. — On Monday, President Donald Trump will travel to Manchester, New Hampshire, to hold an event at Southern New Hampshire University, where he will likely echo the false claims he made in his State of the Union (SOTU) address.
One claim from the State of the Union that President Trump is sure to repeat at the event will be his supposed commitment to addressing the opioid epidemic. While overdose deaths are trending downward, the administration’s actions have likely prevented them from declining further and could make things worse over time. The lack of attention to this issue was evident just last month, after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services forgot to renew the national emergency declaring opioids a public health crisis.
In New Hampshire, the opioid epidemic has been particularly devastating. In 2017, the state saw more than twice the national average of opioid related deaths. That same year, President Trump said on a call with a world leader that he “won New Hampshire because New Hampshire is a drug-infested den,” raising concerns that his administration, which was slow to address the epidemic, did not understand the real magnitude of the problem facing New Hampshire families.
The policies set by the Trump administration could make the epidemic worse over time. Over the next decade, President Trump’s budget would cut $1.5 trillion from Medicaid. The Medicaid program has played a critical role in addressing the opioid epidemic by giving states resources to provide coverage to nearly 4 in 10 nonelderly adults battling opioid use disorder (OUD). Despite the many benefits of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including expanding opioid treatment services to populations without access to it, the Trump administration is attempting to topple the law in the courts, which would put coverage for 55,000 New Hampshirites at risk and would remove protections for the 572,200 New Hampshirites with pre-existing conditions.
Learn more about how President Trump’s policies and broken promises have hurt New Hampshire families here.
4 facts on the Trump administration’s policy record in New Hampshire
1. Opioid epidemic
Promise: President Trump promised New Hampshire families: “New Hampshire has a tremendous drug epidemic … and the people that are in trouble, the people that are addicted, we’re going to work with them and try and make them better. And we will make them better.”
- In 2017, 425 people died from opioid overdoses in New Hampshire, giving the state the fourth-highest rate of opioid-related overdose deaths in the country.
- In 2017, New Hampshire’s opioid death rate is more than twice the national average.
- Four times as many people in New Hampshire died from opioid overdoses than car accidents in 2017.
The Trump administration’s actions have done little to help:
- As a former addict and current recovery advocate, New Hampshirite Dean Lemire explained in a video how Trump staged a roundtable on the opioid epidemic but barely paid attention and has in fact worked to dismantle resources for individuals with OUD.
- The Trump administration’s continued attempts to sabotage and repeal the ACA and its expansion of Medicaid, including a lawsuit moving through the courts right now, would devastate access to substance abuse treatment for millions of people.
- The Trump administration appointed 24-year-old Taylor Weyeneth to run the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Weyeneth graduated college only a few months before the 2016 election, and his only professional experience after graduating was on the Trump campaign.
- White House adviser and former pollster Kellyanne Conway was charged to lead the administration’s efforts on the opioid epidemic, freezing out career experts.
2. Health care
Promise: President Trump promised New Hampshire families: “We are going to have health care at a fraction of the cost.”
Reality: The Trump administration launched an all-out attack on Americans’ health care by trying to sabotage and repeal the ACA. If the ACA is repealed:
- 572,000 New Hampshirites with pre-existing conditions will lose protections.
- 89,000 New Hampshirites will lose their health coverage.
- The average New Hampshire family would have seen an average annual premium increase of $3,790 in 2019.
3. Profits and wages
Promise: President Trump promised New Hampshire families: “We’re going to stand up and defend our American workers.”
The Trump administration has taken away safeguards that ensure workers are paid overtime, protect retirees from exploitative financial advisers, and ensure that people pay less at the gas pump. Due to the Trump administration’s policies, New Hampshirites will lose:
- $5 million in overtime wages
- $188 million in retirement savings
- $88 million at the gas pump
Promise: President Trump promised New Hampshire families: “We will massively cut taxes for the middle class.”
Reality: Most of President Trump’s $2 trillion tax cut goes to corporations and the rich. Many New Hampshire families are getting stuck with the bill:
- 37,880 New Hampshire families paid more in taxes last year due to the Trump administration’s 2017 tax bill.
For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, please contact Freedom Alexander Murphy at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-796-9712.