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Sen. Smith’s Legislation Would Make Medicines Affordable

Sept. 5, 2018

Sen. Smith’s Legislation Would Make Medicines Affordable

Statement of Robert Weissman, President, Public Citizen

Note: Today, U.S. Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minn.) was joined by co-sponsors Sens. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Corey Booker (D-N.J.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.), Tom Udall (N.M.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) in introducing the Affordable Medications Act, legislation incorporating a number of leading proposals to lower prescription prices. Smith’s legislation takes on pharmaceutical corporations by leveraging government negotiation power for Medicare Part D, penalizing corporations that price gouge and curbing monopoly abuses.

This is what a serious proposal to lower prescription prices looks like.

For all the recent attention to high medication prices, proposals from the Trump administration would do very little to make medicines affordable. Instead, the administration protects the corporations by shifting blame to middlemen and hospitals.

But where the Trump administration blueprint is largely absent of reforms that would bring relief to people struggling to afford their medicines, the Affordable Medications Act introduced today by Sen. Smith would make a meaningful difference in people’s lives by ensuring that Americans have access to the medicines they need.

To make medicines affordable, we have to stand up to the prescription corporations.