Senator Bernie Sanders went directly to the heart of Trump's Obamacare repealer's stance on inflated drug pricing. And his answers were not acceptable.
Bernie Sanders tries to get drug policy out of Tom Price to no avail
HHS nominee Tom Price evaded a pressing Sanders on drug pricing, importation of prescription drugs from other countries and more. Democrats must not be given a pass on this issue either. After all, Corey Booker and twelve other Democrats recently voted down an amendment to legalize the importation of medicines from foreign countries.
Sanders reminded Tom Price that Donald Trump said pharma is getting away with murder. Price said he recalled the tweet.
The Senator said that Democrats are working on legislation to curb drug prices. He said the top five pharmaceutical companies made over $50 billion in profits even as one in five Americans cannot afford their prescription drugs.
Sanders asked Price if Donald Trump will support legislation that allows Medicare to negotiate with the pharmaceutical companies to reduce cost. He also wished to know whether Trump will support importing prescription drugs from overseas.
Price had a terrible response. He stated the obvious; everyone is concerned about unaffordable drug prices. Sanders got impatient.
"We are paying by far the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs," Sanders said. "You don't disagree with that. Do you?"
Price said he thought the Senator was correct. The Senator asserted that in fact, he was correct.
Price said that one needed to find what the root causes were. Sanders then schooled him. The causes are known.
"One of the root causes is that every other major country on earth negotiates drug prices with the pharmaceutical industry," Sanders said. "And our country, the drug companies can raise their prices. Today they can double their prices. There is no law to prevent them from doing that. Will you work with us so that Medicare negotiates prices with the pharmaceutical industry."
Price fumbled by just stating he will work to try to bring down costs. Shameful.