Orrin Hatch actually said mouthwash kills oxycodone. There is no science to prove that.

WASHINGTON — In what might have been the worst missive ever sent to a quarter million recipients, Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, claimed this week that mouthwash can kill a generic form of oxycodone.

Oxycodone, if you don’t know, is an opioid painkiller that is distributed, marketed and distributed by Purdue Pharma LP. Oxycodone is also known by its generic names, generic oxycodone and narcotic hydrocodone, but is often referred to by the industry-invented name, oxycodone.

“Test in FDA-approved clinical studies for weak opioid molecule# 203499 purst (Oxycodone 203499) shows potent mode-of-action with vigor and resistance against the analgesic effect of mouthwash,” Hatch wrote in an email on Thursday.

We tried to contact Hatch via his Senate office and (without fanfare) his Senate Finance Committee email address, but we got little response and it took more than two days to get a response from a staff member at his finance committee.

Now, a day after our inquiry, Hatch has rescinded his claims on Twitter, apologizing for the “unintentional typo.”

“I apologize for the unintentional typo I used in my latest missive,” Hatch wrote in a follow-up tweet. “I have no authority to meddle with FDA approval, but it was likely a mistake to send a press release in my name.”

“My intention was never to question FDA oversight or to cast the FDA in a bad light,” he wrote. “I have known the FDA for many years and have complete confidence in the agency’s abilities to protect the public health.”

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