Last Call for 5.10.22 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

Attorney General Ashley Moody on Tuesday warned Floridians about the dangers of synthetic opioids in recognition of the first-ever National Fentanyl Awareness Day.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is more potent than morphine or heroin by orders of magnitude — just two milligrams is enough to kill a full-grown adult. According to the most recent annual report from the Florida Medical Examiners, fentanyl caused more deaths in Florida in 2020 than any other drug.

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, “National Fentanyl Awareness Day is an effort to educate individuals around the dangerous threat that fentanyl poses to the safety, health, and national security of the American people.” It has also created a new exhibit at its museum, “Faces of Fentanyl,” to commemorate the lives lost from fentanyl poisoning.

Moody noted that in recent years, it has been more common to find fentanyl laced into counterfeit pills, and that law enforcement across the country seized nearly 10 million counterfeit pills laced with fentanyl in 2021 last year, which represents a 50-fold increase from 2018.

The Attorney General blamed the “shocking increase” on the Joe Biden administration’s border policies, saying that they are “paving the way for these dangerous drugs to flood into our country.”

“Nobody should use illicit drugs. Not only are they illegal, but they can be lethal. On this first-ever National Fentanyl Awareness Day, I am demanding that Biden take action and reminding Floridians that just one laced pill can kill,” she said.

Evening Reads

—“Minority groups say elections can’t proceed in North Florida under Gov. Ron DeSantis map” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics

—“Is DeSantis ‘scared’ to state his stance on an all-out abortion ban?” via Danielle J. Brown of the Florida Phoenix

—“Even with mask ‘harassment’ rule, Florida saw a drop in students using Hope Scholarships” via Ana Goñi-Lessan of the Tallahassee Democrat

—“DeSantis’ math textbook hoax” via Judd Legum of Popular Information

—“Gas prices reach record highs as Joe Biden vows inflation top priority” via Evan Halper, Jeff Stein and Rachel Siegel of The Washington Post

—“States turn to tax cuts as inflation stays hot” via Alan Rappeport of The New York Times

—“Nikki Fried, Michele Rayner warn overturning Roe could erode other SCOTUS rulings on equality” via Daniel Figueroa IV of Florida Politics

—“Florida’s permit plan would speed up wetlands destruction, critics say” via Jeffrey Schweers of the Orlando Sentinel

—“Patch notes: Gov. DeSantis receives crypto deregulation bill” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics

—“Environmental groups sue to get EPA to reassess Indian River Lagoon impacts” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics

—“His word helps Tampa prosecutors put people away. But can he be trusted? via Dan Sullivan of the Tampa Bay Times

—“Panhandle backlash on FPL rate hike helped spark DeSantis veto of rooftop solar bill” via Mary Ellen Klas of the Miami Herald/Tampa Bay Times

Quote of the Day

“We know that there’s statute of limitations for a whole bunch of things with theft and rape and even murder. But the perpetrator doesn’t get to say ‘you know what, yeah, I violated your rights, but you ran out of time.’”

Cliff Albright, executive director of Black Voters Matter, on the state’s response to a lawsuit challenging Florida’s new congressional map.

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