Republican lawmakers Wednesday introduced new legislation aimed at designating Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations.
The legislation, officially known as the Ending the Notorious, Aggressive and Remorseless Criminal Organizations and Syndicates or NARCOS Act, was introduced by Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.
Kennedy is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“We need to dismantle and disincentivize Mexico’s cartels in every way possible. Designating these murderers as foreign terrorist organizations would give U.S. officials more tools to use in putting the cartels and the networks that support them behind bars,” Kennedy said in a statement.
If passed, the legislation would see the formation of a task force targeting cartels and drug traffickers, including those bringing fentanyl into the United States.
“Americans are being killed on both sides of the border. And Americans are being addicted, certainly, on our side of the border — killed, too,” Kennedy said in specific reference to the deadly opioid.
The bill lists nine separate Mexican cartels that would be designated terrorist organizations under the Immigration and Nationality Act.