On Tuesday, a group of five moderate Democrats announced a new bill to cut drug costs, indicating that their party may not get enough votes to pass larger drug pricing proposals.
The larger plan was supported by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (California Democrat) and President Joe Biden. It is part of Congressional Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget package. It includes asking Medicare to negotiate drug prices.
But the Democrats can only endure so many defections and insist on an eight-person majority in the House of Commons. The new bill is seen by some as a direct challenge to the larger plan, and the House Energy and Commerce Committee is marking the plan.
Rep. Catherine Rice (DN.Y.), one of the initiators of the new bill and a member of the panel, who has criticized Pelosi in the past, told the news media in a statement, “I support many of the proposals that are being considered this week. , But I do not support the advancement of policies that do not bear financial responsibility and endanger the final passage of the bill.”
Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) added: “We need to take seriously how to solve this problem and ensure that we support legislation through broadly supported policies that have the bipartisan and bicameral support needed for Congress to pass. “I don’t believe that the drug pricing provisions before the Energy and Commerce Committee today will achieve this goal and succeed in the Senate, so I cannot vote for this title.”
The bill (pdf) will allow medical insurance to negotiate drug prices, but only for a subset of drugs that are no longer competitive due to lack of exclusivity. It will also limit the price increase of certain drugs and eliminate legal loopholes in handling pricing.
“No one should choose between putting food on the table and filling out a prescription. As the Democratic Party has promised, our plan will greatly reduce consumers’ out-of-pocket expenses, while we preserve American employment opportunities and the future Innovative investment,” Rep. Scott Peters (California) said in a statement.
Representatives Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.) and Lou Correa (D-Calif.) also sponsored the new bill.
If four or more Democrats vote against a plan supported by Pelosi, the plan will fail. No Republicans expressed support for the plan, and most expressed opposition.
A Pelosi spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Progressive groups condemned the split of the Democratic Party and urged people to call representatives and urge them to support another plan.
“Representative. Patrick Gaspard, President and CEO of the Center for American Progress, said in a statement: People’s drug prices, especially for patients suffering from chronic diseases such as diabetes and multiple sclerosis. statement.
“Contrary to what they claim, their opposition to the drug proposal threatens the entirety of President Joe Biden’s “Rebuild Better” agenda. Democrats have been campaigning for years and they have voted for this agenda before,” he Added.
Murphy last week expressed concern about spending in the $3.5 trillion budget plan, and the Democrats hope to pass Congress without Republican support. She is not alone; Sens. Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) expressed their desire to reduce prices, and nine members of Congress, including Schrader and Rice, wrote to Pei in May. Losey, calling for an achievable plan, the bipartisan support “has the support of the majority of Americans and stakeholders in the public and private sectors.”
The Democratic Party hopes to use the savings from drug pricing negotiations to fund other benefits and expand the public health care system.
Some of these regulations are in HR 3, which was passed by the House of Representatives in 2019 but was not adopted by the Senate.
Pelosi told reporters in a recent conference call that the bill “calls for the use of savings from prescription drug price negotiations-the savings will be used to expand the dental, vision and hearing benefits of the elderly”, adding, “We all For that reason.”
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times