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Blackburn, Bredesen, Dean and Lee Speak At Opioid Summit

Posted: 4:22 PM, Aug 24, 2018
Updated: 2018-08-24 19:20:41-04

Tennessee candidates spoke at a new summit: "Working Together to Find Solutions to the Opioid Crisis."

Congressman Marsha Blackburn, Former Governor Phil Bredesen, Former Mayor Karl Dean, Businessman Bill Lee spoke on the opioid crisis panel Friday at the Hermitage Hotel.

It was organized by the non-profit organization Healthy Tennessee, which is committed to ensure the state becomes first in the South for a healthier state.

Bredesen said his first U.S. Senate action would be introducing or co-sponsoring legislation to repeal a 2016 law criticized for weakening federal authority to curb opioid distribution. His opponent, Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, supported it.

At the forum, Bredesen said the Blackburn-backed opioid law "defanged" the Drug Enforcement Agency. Blackburn has called for addressing any "unintended consequences." She told reporters Friday that Congress will act when DEA proposes changes.

Also at the forum, Blackburn backed a three-day federal opioid prescription limit, exempting cancer and hospice.