Fact Check: “Portman touts anti-heroin measures, even though he voted against their funding”

COLUMBUS, OH -- Just like the ultimate Washington insider that he is, Senator Portman is out with a new television ad bragging about drug abuse prevention efforts -- even though he voted against funding for these same efforts and has slashed hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for drug abuse prevention in order to give more handouts to his wealthy and well-connected friends.

From Liz Margolis, Strickland Campaign Spokeswoman: “Just like the hypocritical, ultimate Washington insider that he is, Senator Portman is trying to brag about drug abuse prevention efforts that he voted against funding -- but nothing can distract Ohioans from Portman’s real record: voting for unfair trade deals that have outsourced hundreds of thousands of jobs to place to like China, raising the retirement age and cutting benefits for seniors, stripping overtime pay away from millions of workers and pushing the agenda of the wealthy and well-connected at every turn. As governor, Ted Strickland tackled the scourge of drug abuse through enforcement, prevention and treatment -- and unlike Senator Portman he actually does what he says.”

See the facts for yourself:

False claim: Portman “invested” in drug abuse prevention efforts.
FACT: Portman “touts anti-heroin measures, even though he voted against their funding” and slashed hundreds of millions of dollars from drug abuse prevention efforts.

  • Cleveland.com: “Sen. Rob Portman touts anti-heroin measures, even though he voted against their funding.” Cleveland.com wrote that Portman “voted against the very bill that would pay for his proposed solutions… Portman aides confirmed to Cleveland.com that money for fighting heroin addiction would come from the $1.1 trillion spending bill Congress passed in December, a measure that Portman denounced as wasteful and likely to drive up deficits. This puts the Ohio Republican in an awkward position.” [Cleveland.com, 1/27/16]

  • Akron Beacon Journal: As President Bush’s Budget Director Portman slashed hundreds of millions of dollars from drug abuse prevention funding. “As director of the Office of Management and the Budget working on President George Bush’s last federal budget, Portman outlined $248.8 billion in cuts, a 3.6 percent reduction, to drug treatment programs coordinated by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and National Institutes of Health.” [Akron Beacon Journal, 2/5/16]

  • Ryan Budget: Portman voted to cut drug abuse prevention funding by more than $800 million in order to spend tax dollars on handouts to the wealthy and well-connected. The calculations of the analysis come from the FY13 and FY14 Ryan budgets, both of which Portman voted for.

  • December 2015: Portman voted against expanding coverage for addiction treatment and opposed increasing resources for substance abuse prevention and treatment. [CQ, 12/3/15; S.Amdt. 2892 to S.Amdt. 2874 to H.R. 3762, Vote 317, 12/3/15; Office of Sen. Shaheen Press Release, 12/3/15]

  • Chillicothe Gazette: Ohio leaders spoke out against Portman’s hypocrisy on drug abuse prevention funding. The Chillicothe Gazette wrote, “Democrats, including Chillicothe's mayor, slammed Sen. Rob Portman's record on drug abuse funding Friday, saying his rhetoric doesn't match his congressional votes… ‘Rob Portman talks about the challenge of drug abuse and brags about his efforts, but then he votes against funding to actually help solve the problem,’ said Ohio Democratic Party Executive Director Greg Beswick.” [Chillicothe Gazette, 2/26/16]

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