Forcing Trump’s Hand, Dems Introduce Bill to Lower ‘Outrageous’ Drug Prices

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"There's no reason for the United States government to be a sucker. But our government is ripped off on a grand scale by Big Pharma every day," said Public Citizen president Robert Weissman. (Photo: Floris Van Cauwelaert/Flickr/cc)

Reprinted from Common Dreams by Jake Johnson on October 25, 2017.

Challenging President Donald Trump to make good on his professed desire to take on the pharmaceutical industry—which he has said is “getting away with murder”—Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) joined several top congressional Democrats on Wednesday in introducing legislation that would tackle some of Big Pharma’s “outrageous abuses” by permitting the Department of Health and Human Services to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs under Medicare Part D.

“While drug corporations make extraordinary profits, our people are dying and becoming sicker than they should because of outrageously high prices for the medicine that they need. This is unacceptable,” Sanders said in a statement. “We must join the rest of the industrialized world by implementing prescription drug policies that work for everybody, not just the CEOs of the pharmaceutical industry.”

The bill—officially titled the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Act of 2017 (pdf)—is explicitly aimed at forcing Trump to live up to his campaign trail rhetoric, which indicated that he would back a move to allow government to negotiate drug prices. …

Common Dreams 10/25

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Jeff Burman represents assistant editors on the Guild’s Board of Directors. He can be reached at

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