AMAC Exclusive by Clayton Fuller
All politics is local, as are the unintended consequences of bad policies. Last fall, the Biden-Harris campaign promised America it would help the country “Build Back Better” but the crisis at the border created by revoking the Trump administration’s successful security measures, Biden’s wasteful $1.9 trillion COVID-19 spending bill, and the administration’s neo-Marxist outlook on criminal justice is quickly turning into a nightmare with devestating effects for local communities across the country, including my own community in Southern Appalachia.
Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with an individual—let’s call him Tom—who was a drug trafficker. This conversation happened based on an agreement made between me as the prosecutor, Tom’s legal counsel, and Tom. Up until the last few months, Tom had been out of the drug trade and doing really well, but there was just too much money to be made in that lifestyle and he went back to it. Tom had a Mexican cartel contact in a nearby town, and was making routine fifty-mile trips there to pick up methamphetamine. He essentially operated as an Uber eats driver for methamphetamine orders and was making more money in two weeks than I make in six weeks as a prosecutor.
It was clear that with the influx of money many Americans are receiving due to Biden’s COVID-19 stimulus payments, drug demand in my home in northwest Georgia was through the roof—and yet the prices reflected that the under Biden’s disastrous border policies, the Mexican cartel supply was more than meeting increased demand. Prior to the Biden calamity, drug traffickers would charge $1,500 for an ounce of methamphetamine and about $400 for a ¼ ounce. Now, Tom reported that the cost of an ounce had decreased by over 70% to just $400 and the price of a ¼ ounce had gone down by 75% to about $100. Tom described that with more money and lower prices meth users were able to buy more and use more—which has resulted in several heartbreaking problems for my community.
First and most pressing, this means that at the local level we are seeing more overdoses than normal. Statistics are tough to come by, but follow on conversations with law enforcement here led me to believe that my four-county circuit may see at least a 50% increase in overdoses this year. Moreover, the increased drug usage has the system at a breaking point. As charges of possession of and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and opioids increase, room in county jails has decreased. Now, county jails are bursting at the seams. The caseloads are also unsustainable for the crime lab forensic toxicologists who do testing to find out what the drugs are. Wait times of a year or more for toxicology reports are now routine. Law enforcement and probation officers have little bandwidth to perform their basic duties—and I have seen many good officers leave under the strain.
This also means more money for the Mexican cartels. Reuters estimates that the Mexican cartels make about $21 billion dollars each year on the drug trade. That is nearly the gross domestic product of Iceland. Tom’s testimony is anecdotal evidence that because of the increased demand due to additional government cash payments to individuals, coupled with the lax policies at the border and the refusal to prosecute drug possession in progressive states, Mexican cartels are well positioned to substantially increase their revenues in 2021. In less than a year, the United States has moved from law and order to chaos and catastrophe on the Rio Grande. As a result, the Mexican cartels will see more money, and my home region in Appalachia will see more dead bodies.
Kamala Harris labelled herself during her previous campaigns as a “top cop.” She has talked about understanding the important work of local prosecutors because that is where “the vast majority of prosecutions occur.” Normally, one would expect a politician with Harris’s prosecutorial background to understand the needs and challenges of a local, line prosecutor. At the very least, one would expect her administration to be cognizant of policies that would make the job of a local prosecutor more difficult and hopefully avoid such terrible policies. The Vice President should be a crime-fighting colleague. Instead, Harris fashions herself a progressive prosecutor whose sole purpose is not to make communities safer, but to achieve the radical goals her party could never pass through Congress.
Kamala Harris took over 90 days to travel to the border. She defended not going to the border for so long by arguing “And I haven’t been to Europe.” Well, she has not been to the neighborhoods of Southern Appalachia yet either. If she did visit, she would see my home devastated by the progressive prosecutorial policies she advocates for, the welfare policies of Democrats in Congress, and the Biden administration’s utter dereliction of duty at the border. All politics is local, and downstream of Build Back Better in my community, Kamala Harris would find American carnage renewed.
Clay Fuller served as a White House Fellow from 2018-2019 advising senior Trump administration officials on special operations oversight at the Department of Defense and advising the Office of the Vice President on countering the opioid epidemic. He is an experienced federal, military, and Appalachian prosecutor as well as a reserve military officer with a decade of national security experience. Follow him on Twitter @Clay4MainStreet and on Facebook at Clay Fuller: Main Street Patriot.