Two of the eight members of Congress recognized this week by the Coalition to Stop Opioid Overdose for efforts to combat the opioid epidemic are senators locked in tough re-election contests this fall. Republican Sens. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Rob Portman of Ohio are on the coalition's list, made up primarily of legislators who recently have sponsored key bills such as the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) and the Opioid Use Disorder Treatment Expansion and Modernization Act.
Other members of Congress recognized by the coalition during Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week are Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Reps. Larry Bucshon (R-Ind.), Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) and Fred Upton (R-Mich.).
The coalition, made up of more than 40 local, regional and national groups seeking meaningful policy responses to the opioid crisis, receives financial support from the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and a number of corporations, including pharmaceutical companies.
Recent polls have Portman and Ayotte leading their Democratic opponents in what are two of the highest-profile Senate races this year.