r960-b03afa712e03a5f20076144f67e2907d.jpg


Democrats are demanding that President Trump support new legislation to let Americans buy cheaper drugs from Canada, pointing to promises the president has made to lower prices.

“He has made promises to the American people about prescription drug prices,” said Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., at a press conference Tuesday. “Now it is time for him to put up or shut up.”

Booker joined fellow Senate and House Democrats Tuesday to introduce legislation to legalize so-called drug re-importation, which is buying drugs from another country such as Canada that are first imported from the United States. Re-imports from Canada can be cheaper because that country has a single-payer healthcare program.

Drug re-importation isn’t a new issue, but has gained steam again recently since Trump has said that he wanted to lower prices but hasn’t specifically endorsed drug re-importation.

Booker previously voted against an amendment last month to a budget resolution that would have allowed re-importation. He said that he opposed it due to safety concerns.

Booker now says those concerns have been allayed, with the safety provisions in the bill.

Drug re-importation is currently illegal under federal law. However, the Food and Drug Administration usually looks the other way if an individual does it. The agency traditionally goes after entities that aim to offer imported drugs instead.

This bill would legalize importation. It would require foreign sellers of prescription drugs to register with the Food and Drug Administration and they can only sell drugs that are made in FDA-inspected plants.

The bill is expected to get fervent opposition from the pharma industry, which has fought states that tried to legalize re-importation before. The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, the industry’s main lobbying group, slammed the bill.

Democrats say Trump is off to slow start on 'fair trade'

Also from the Washington Examiner

“He did not declare China to be a currency manipulator on ‘day one’ as he promised during the campaign,” Rep. DeLauro said.

02/28/17 1:21 PM

“The bill lacks sufficient safety controls, would exacerbate threats to public health from counterfeit, adulterated or diverted medicines, and increase the burden on law enforcement to prevent unregulated medicines and other dangerous products from harming consumers,” said PhRMA spokesperson Nicole Longo.

But pharma isn’t the only one with concerns. The nonpartisan Pew Charitable Trusts said on Tuesday that drug re-importation means a safety risk.

“With a steady supply of non-compliant product coming over the border, or through online pharmacies, it will be very difficult, and potentially impossible, to distinguish product that is non-compliant [with safety regulations],” according to a letter to Sanders.

Nevertheless, Democrats are pushing forward saying that the legislation is needed and the provision has a good chance of becoming law.


“I am more optimistic than we have ever been that we are going to get something done on this,” said Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., who also voted against the amendment last month.

Sessions warns of 'viral videos' and 'targeted' police killings

Also from the Washington Examiner

Sessions also promised that his Justice Department would prioritize cases against violent crimes.

02/28/17 1:15 PM



Source link

About the Author:

Leave a Reply