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Democrats' Campaign to Control Drug Prices Nears Collapse

Added 10-21-21 05:40:04am EST - “Democrats have made giving government the power to negotiate drug prices a central campaign theme for decades. With the power to make it happen, they may fall short yet again.” - Nytimes.com

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Nytimes.com: “A 30-Year Campaign to Control Drug Prices Faces Yet Another Failure”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

Democrats have made giving government the power to negotiate drug prices a central campaign theme for decades. With the power to make it happen, they may fall short yet again.

WASHINGTON — When a powerful Democratic Senate chairman assembled his Special Committee on Aging to confront what he called a “crisis of affordability” for prescription drugs, he proposed a novel solution: allow the government to negotiate better deals for critical medications.

The year was 1989, and the idea from that chairman, former Senator David Pryor of Arkansas, touched off a drive for government drug-price negotiations that has been embraced by two generations of Democrats and one Republican president, Donald J. Trump — but now appears at risk of being left out of a sprawling domestic policy bill taking shape in Congress.

Senior Democrats insist that they have not given up the push to grant Medicare broad powers to negotiate lower drug prices as part of a once-ambitious climate change and social safety net bill that is slowly shrinking in scope. They know that the loss of the provision, promoted by President Biden on the campaign trail and in the White House, could be the single most embarrassing defeat in the package, since it has been central to Democratic congressional campaigns for nearly three decades.

“Senate Democrats understand that after all the pledges, you’ve got to deliver,” said Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, the chairman of the Finance Committee.

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