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Dems Want to Make Drugs as Affordable as . . . Gasoline?

The same people who brought you record-high gasoline prices—i.e., President Joe Biden and the Democrats, not Vladimir Putin—now want to make prescription drugs “affordable.”
Apparently, lowering the price of prescription drugs is the primary, if not the only, object of the Democrats’ mega-scaled-back Build Back Better plan. The idea is to claim that their prescription drug scheme will reduce federal spending on prescription drugs, thereby saving the government money.
And then use those “saved funds” to extend the “enhanced” Obamacare insurance subsidies that were included in President Biden’s American Rescue Plan that passed shortly after he became president.
Because those enhanced Obamacare subsidies go away at the end of the year, some 14 million people with Obamacare coverage will receive notices around October—i.e., right before the midterm elections—that their health insurance premiums will be going up significantly. And that possibility means Democrats could lose even more votes in November.
You can see their problem.
Since Democrats have long wanted to impose price controls on the prescription drug industry, they see this ultra-skinny version of BBB as perhaps their last opportunity—both because they plan to use the once-a-year reconciliation process that allows them to avoid a filibuster in the Senate and because they will likely lose control of the House of Representatives and maybe even the Senate after the midterm elections.
Of course, Democrats don’t refer to their scheme as price controls. They call it “negotiating.” But don’t be deceived; “negotiations” is a euphemism for price controls. Drug companies that don’t agree to the government’s offer will be assessed a “non-compliance fee” that quickly rises to 95 percent of a drug’s total sales revenue.
That’s not total profit, mind you, but 95 percent of all revenue from a drug’s sales.
Given manufacturers won’t know what the government’s “negotiated” price will be until the drug exists, many new, potentially life-saving drugs will never be developed.
And all these efforts are taking place at a time when drug prices are up just 2.5 percent over the past year, considerably less than, well, just about everything—and especially gasoline.
If President Biden actually knew how to lower the price of anything, including gasoline, don’t you think he would have done it by now? If Democrats succeed in their effort to make prescription drugs more “affordable,” we’ll all be paying more.