Trump Demanded Anti-Opioids Scare Campaign: ‘We Need People Dying In A Ditch’

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 23: U.S. President Donald Trump talks to reporters during a meeting with politically conservative leaders in the Cabinet Room at the White House January 23, 2019 in Washington, DC. Trump con... WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 23: U.S. President Donald Trump talks to reporters during a meeting with politically conservative leaders in the Cabinet Room at the White House January 23, 2019 in Washington, DC. Trump confirmed that he will not deliver the State of the Union speech before a joint meeting of Congress later this month after Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) withdrew the invitation. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) MORE LESS
Start your day with TPM.
Sign up for the Morning Memo newsletter

While planning for his administration’s approach to combatting the opioid epidemic, President Trump envisioned a gruesome visual advertising campaign that would “scare kids”: I want “the most horrifying ads you’ve ever seen.”

“We need people dying in a ditch. I want bodies stacked on top of bodies,” Trump told White House counselor Kellyanne Conway last January, according to a new book by former White House staffer Cliff Sims which was obtained by Politico. “Do it like they did with cigarettes. They had body bags piled all over the streets and ugly people with giant holes in their faces and necks.”

Trump was reportedly less impressed with a plan to launch a website where people could post about their personal experiences with the opioid crisis.

“Me telling people to sign up on a website isn’t going to do anything,” Trump said reportedly said. “We need to scare kids so much that they will never touch a single drug in their entire life. Next thing you know, the kids don’t want to be ‘cool’ and smoke anymore.”

The new book, “Team of Vipers: My extraordinary 500 days in the Trump White House,” will reportedly be released on Monday.

Latest News

Notable Replies

  1. We need to scare kids so much that they will never touch a single drug in their entire life. Next thing you know, the kids don’t want to be ‘cool’ and smoke anymore.”

    Actually people are still smoking despite some of the most graphic PSA’s imaginable. Part of the reason why RJR Reynolds is till in business.

  2. Avatar for imkmu3 imkmu3 says:

    The idiot uncle’s solution who hasn’t even a scintilla of awareness about what he speaks of.

  3. And I want rockets, lots of rockets.

  4. I could think of one Individual 1 I’d like to see in that ditch…

  5. Media campaigns like this are usually a waste of money—lighting a pile of dollar bills on fire would work better. Media campaigns on drugs usually proceed from someone’s notion of “common sense” even though there is a huge literature on how and when to do campaigns.

Continue the discussion at forums.talkingpointsmemo.com

20 more replies

Participants

Avatar for system1 Avatar for buckguy Avatar for robaruba Avatar for brooklyndweller Avatar for mondfledermaus Avatar for jep07 Avatar for imkmu3 Avatar for bojimbo26 Avatar for easydm Avatar for trnc Avatar for psyclone Avatar for riverstreet Avatar for khaaannn Avatar for fasteddiemc Avatar for darrtown Avatar for reggid Avatar for jinnj Avatar for misterneutron Avatar for jenbieds Avatar for maximus Avatar for checkmate2016 Avatar for rickeu

Continue Discussion
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: