11 Democrats Whore for Big Pharma

Jun 2014
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Cleveland, Ohio
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The letter, which has not been previously reported, encourages Lighthizer to keep the pharmaceutical exclusivity provisions in USMCA. Several of those on the letter are the kind of first-term frontline members that Bustos wants to protect. More than simply wanting to pass USMCA as a political show of “getting things done,” the letter reveals that these conservative Democrats actively want to export to Mexico and Canada the broken monopoly patent system that has generated such high drug prices in America.

A freshmen member, Representative Anthony Brindisi (D-NY), who is a chair of the Blue Dog Coalition, took the lead in authoring the letter. Ten other members have signed on, all of them from the right flank of the caucus. Six of them belong to both the Blue Dogs and the New Dems: Lou Correa (D-CA), Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Joe Cunningham (D-SC), Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Kendra Horn (D-OK), and Ben McAdams (D-UT). Jeff Van Drew (D-NJ ) is a Blue Dog, while Al Lawson (D-FL), Scott Peters (D-CA), and Kathleen Rice (D-NY) are New Dems. Cunningham, Horn, McAdams, and Van Drew are freshmen.

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While the letter begins with words of support for the working group that is attempting to resolve “outstanding concerns” with USMCA, it then goes into the pharmaceutical provisions. Currently, USMCA includes a 10-year data exclusivity period for new biologic drugs, which are complex manufactured drug therapies that come from living entities like cells or tissues. These drugs would be protected from “biosimilar” generic versions for those 10 years. The USMCA also expands the definition of a biologic, giving more drugs this exclusivity period.

Biologics happen to be the most expensive drugs on the market: Despite being 2 percent of all prescriptions, they represent 37 percent of all net consumer spending on drugs. Nearly all of the growth in net prescription drug spending since 2014 comes from biologics.

The 10-year data exclusivity period, which means that biosimilars could not be tested during this time, is actually shorter than the current 12-year period in the U.S. But Canada currently has an eight-year exclusivity law, and Mexico’s is five years. So the USMCA provision would increase patent monopoly periods throughout North America, and threaten affordability for expensive life-saving medications, particularly in Mexico. Similar protectionist provisions in a U.S. trade agreement with Chile increased unit prices for biologics in that country.

Moreover, locking in a 10-year exclusivity period in a trade agreement could pre-empt future congressional efforts to change the length of exclusivity in the United States. The other signatories to the agreement would be able to sue over violations arising from such changes in law.

In the letter, the authors write: “While we all have concerns with high drug prices, it is also clear that trade deals should not be designed to inherently undermine U.S.-based industries, but rather to raise standards abroad … we hope this provision will be used to push Canada and Mexico to shoulder their share of the burden in paying for innovation.” So Brindisi and his Blue Dog and New Democrat colleagues explicitly want to export these longer patent protections to Mexico and Canada, threatening access to drug treatments in those nations.

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Representative Ro Khanna (D-CA), one of the more outspoken members on the issue, gave this statement to the Prospect: “Big Pharma drafted this provision of the USMCA to lock in an extra decade of their price-gouging monopolies. I stand with more than 100 of my fellow members of Congress opposing these sweetheart giveaways to the drug companies that are responsible for bankrupting countless sick Americans.”

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It's an important issue and the entire article dessrves a read.

But my point in posting this is Democrats are not per se progressives. To know how they actually feel about you and your family, watch what they do.

Not what they say.

Your thoughts?
 
Sep 2019
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1,373
dfw, texas
did you try to read the article? i am not sure why you think 11 democrats out of 230 or so in the house is a big deal, or if what they said in the article is their intention is even wrong, and I am sure by what is in the article you quoted that they are on board with allowing this country to use the huge base of Medicare patients as leverage to work out cheaper prices for prescription drugs, similar to what foreign countries do to get lower prices FROM OUR BIG DRUG COMPANIES THAT GET OUR TAXPAYER SUBSIDIES AND TAX BREAKS....if you actually read the article why do you act like what they want is bad?

In the letter, the authors write: “While we all have concerns with high drug prices, it is also clear that trade deals should not be designed to inherently undermine U.S.-based industries, but rather to raise standards abroad … we hope this provision will be used to push Canada and Mexico to shoulder their share of the burden in paying for innovation.” So Brindisi and his Blue Dog and New Democrat colleagues explicitly want to export these longer patent protections to Mexico and Canada, threatening access to drug treatments in those nations. from the article you posted that is not like what you claimed it is-

Most Democrats are opposed to the pharmaceutical provisions. Over 110 members wrote to Lighthizer in July requesting that the biologic provision be dumped out of the trade deal. Many first-term members in swing districts, such as Max Rose (D-NY), Jared Golden (D-ME), and Elaine Luria (D-VA), signed that letter; they clearly believe that lowering drug prices is a political win for Democrats in tight races, as well as the right policy choice.

The Brindisi letter nods to the idea that the USMCA “must not diminish Congress’s ability to enact subsequent legislation in the areas of intellectual property and pharmaceuticals.” They reference a “counter-proposal that would effectively address this concern.” That was reported by Politico last month; it would stipulate that if Congress pushed down its biologic exclusivity period to five or seven years, that would be binding on Canada and Mexico as well. While Canada and Mexico didn’t ask for biologics changes and would presumably be unconcerned with such a ratcheting down to a level closer to their current law, other countries with large pharmaceutical manufacturers, like in Europe, may not accept that as a template.

The authors even suggest that keeping the biologics component of the USMCA is critical to passing the signature Democratic drug-price legislation, H.R. 3. That bill would allow Medicare to directly negotiate prices on 25 prescription drugs per year. “Protecting the biologics data exclusivity component of USMCA in a manner that preserves our ability to legislate to lower the cost of prescription drugs without undermining American innovation is essential for the agreement’s prospects,” the letter states.
 
Jun 2014
64,776
39,635
Cleveland, Ohio
did you try to read the article? i am not sure why you think 11 democrats out of 230 or so in the house is a big deal, or if what they said in the article is their intention is even wrong, and I am sure by what is in the article you quoted that they are on board with allowing this country to use the huge base of Medicare patients as leverage to work out cheaper prices for prescription drugs, similar to what foreign countries do to get lower prices FROM OUR BIG DRUG COMPANIES THAT GET OUR TAXPAYER SUBSIDIES AND TAX BREAKS....if you actually read the article why do you act like what they want is bad?

In the letter, the authors write: “While we all have concerns with high drug prices, it is also clear that trade deals should not be designed to inherently undermine U.S.-based industries, but rather to raise standards abroad … we hope this provision will be used to push Canada and Mexico to shoulder their share of the burden in paying for innovation.” So Brindisi and his Blue Dog and New Democrat colleagues explicitly want to export these longer patent protections to Mexico and Canada, threatening access to drug treatments in those nations. from the article you posted that is not like what you claimed it is-

Most Democrats are opposed to the pharmaceutical provisions. Over 110 members wrote to Lighthizer in July requesting that the biologic provision be dumped out of the trade deal. Many first-term members in swing districts, such as Max Rose (D-NY), Jared Golden (D-ME), and Elaine Luria (D-VA), signed that letter; they clearly believe that lowering drug prices is a political win for Democrats in tight races, as well as the right policy choice.

The Brindisi letter nods to the idea that the USMCA “must not diminish Congress’s ability to enact subsequent legislation in the areas of intellectual property and pharmaceuticals.” They reference a “counter-proposal that would effectively address this concern.” That was reported by Politico last month; it would stipulate that if Congress pushed down its biologic exclusivity period to five or seven years, that would be binding on Canada and Mexico as well. While Canada and Mexico didn’t ask for biologics changes and would presumably be unconcerned with such a ratcheting down to a level closer to their current law, other countries with large pharmaceutical manufacturers, like in Europe, may not accept that as a template.

The authors even suggest that keeping the biologics component of the USMCA is critical to passing the signature Democratic drug-price legislation, H.R. 3. That bill would allow Medicare to directly negotiate prices on 25 prescription drugs per year. “Protecting the biologics data exclusivity component of USMCA in a manner that preserves our ability to legislate to lower the cost of prescription drugs without undermining American innovation is essential for the agreement’s prospects,” the letter states.
Because this excuse makes no sense. They want to give Big Pharma another decade of exclusivity on drugs that now comprise 37% of total Rx drug spending in America......

Because......

They want to pass legislation that authorizes Medicare to negotiate prices with drug manufacturers.....

And.....

Drive up drug prices in Canada and Mexico under the bullshit claim of forcing these nations to "shoulder their share of the burden".

None of it is even remotely true.
 
Sep 2019
899
1,373
dfw, texas
Because this excuse makes no sense. They want to give Big Pharma another decade of exclusivity on drugs that now comprise 37% of total Rx drug spending in America......

Because......

They want to pass legislation that authorizes Medicare to negotiate prices with drug manufacturers.....

And.....

Drive up drug prices in Canada and Mexico under the bullshit claim of forcing these nations to "shoulder their share of the burden".

None of it is even remotely true.
why isn't it true? what is the GOP stand on this? more like the 220 or so democrats that did not sign the letter or more like what these guys signed? what is your point?

here is an article that seems to suggest these 11 democrats you are berating, out of 230 or so, are more in alignment with GOP policies than democratic. was that your intention?

After meeting with pharma lobbyists, Trump drops promise to negotiate drug prices

A lot happened in the 2016 campaign, but one of the things Donald Trump did to win the election was shift to the left on a number of key issues — promising to avoid cuts in Social Security and Medicare benefits and adopting a longstanding Democratic pledge to let Medicare negotiate bulk discounts in the price it pays for prescription drugs.


Today, after a meeting with pharmaceutical industry lobbyists and executives, he abandoned that pledge, referring to an idea he supported as recently as three weeks ago as a form of “price fixing” that would hurt “smaller, younger companies.” Instead of getting tough, Trump’s new plan is that he’s “going to be lowering taxes” and “getting rid of regulations.”

New drugs are generally covered by patent monopolies, so drug companies have a lot of pricing power; other companies can’t produce the same drug without paying royalties, so there’s little competition. But most countries use their nationalized health care systems to negotiate a good deal on drug prices. Manufacturing pills is cheap, so it’s usually still profitable for a company to sell medicine at a pretty steep discount.

The United States doesn’t have a nationalized health care system, but we do have Medicare for senior citizens, and since the USA is a very large country, that’s still a huge potential bulk purchaser. But a 2003 law written by congressional Republicans and signed by George W. Bush prohibits the federal government from using that negotiating power.

As recently as January 11, President-elect Trump was promising to revisit this policy.

“Pharma has a lot of lobbies, a lot of lobbyists and a lot of power. And there’s very little bidding on drugs,” he said at a press conference at Trump Tower in Manhattan. “We’re the largest buyer of drugs in the world, and yet we don’t bid properly.”

Today he apparently changed his mind.

I'll oppose anything that makes it harder for smaller, younger companies to take the risk of bringing their product to a vibrantly competitive market. That includes price-fixing by the biggest dog in the market, Medicare, which is what's happening. But we can increase competition and bidding wars, big time.

So what I want, we have to get lower prices, we have to get even better innovation and I want you to move your companies back into the United States. And I want you to manufacture in the United States. We're going to be lowering taxes, we're going to be getting rid of regulations that are unnecessary.

 
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highway234

Former Staff
Feb 2010
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When it comes to the democrats and the republicans, the moneyed interests make sure their bread is buttered on both sides.
 
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Jun 2014
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Cleveland, Ohio
why isn't it true? what is the GOP stand on this? more like the 220 or so democrats that did not sign the letter or more like what these guys signed? what is your point?

here is an article that seems to suggest these 11 democrats you are berating, out of 230 or so, are more in alignment with GOP policies than democratic. was that your intention?

After meeting with pharma lobbyists, Trump drops promise to negotiate drug prices

A lot happened in the 2016 campaign, but one of the things Donald Trump did to win the election was shift to the left on a number of key issues — promising to avoid cuts in Social Security and Medicare benefits and adopting a longstanding Democratic pledge to let Medicare negotiate bulk discounts in the price it pays for prescription drugs.


Today, after a meeting with pharmaceutical industry lobbyists and executives, he abandoned that pledge, referring to an idea he supported as recently as three weeks ago as a form of “price fixing” that would hurt “smaller, younger companies.” Instead of getting tough, Trump’s new plan is that he’s “going to be lowering taxes” and “getting rid of regulations.”

New drugs are generally covered by patent monopolies, so drug companies have a lot of pricing power; other companies can’t produce the same drug without paying royalties, so there’s little competition. But most countries use their nationalized health care systems to negotiate a good deal on drug prices. Manufacturing pills is cheap, so it’s usually still profitable for a company to sell medicine at a pretty steep discount.

The United States doesn’t have a nationalized health care system, but we do have Medicare for senior citizens, and since the USA is a very large country, that’s still a huge potential bulk purchaser. But a 2003 law written by congressional Republicans and signed by George W. Bush prohibits the federal government from using that negotiating power.

As recently as January 11, President-elect Trump was promising to revisit this policy.

“Pharma has a lot of lobbies, a lot of lobbyists and a lot of power. And there’s very little bidding on drugs,” he said at a press conference at Trump Tower in Manhattan. “We’re the largest buyer of drugs in the world, and yet we don’t bid properly.”

Today he apparently changed his mind.

I'll oppose anything that makes it harder for smaller, younger companies to take the risk of bringing their product to a vibrantly competitive market. That includes price-fixing by the biggest dog in the market, Medicare, which is what's happening. But we can increase competition and bidding wars, big time.

So what I want, we have to get lower prices, we have to get even better innovation and I want you to move your companies back into the United States. And I want you to manufacture in the United States. We're going to be lowering taxes, we're going to be getting rid of regulations that are unnecessary.

Yes, that is the traditional pro-business, anti-human GOP stance.
 
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Mar 2012
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The thread title left off the back part "and 200 Republicans plus the Republican President whore for Big Pharma"
Republicans dont complain about big Pharma though. They love them and publicly brag about who gets the most from them.
 
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