What's new

Bush to use veto to prevent medicare negotiation with drug companies

Flying_Mollusk

Muckdog
Joined
Nov 14, 2003
Messages
5,230
Reaction score
0
WASHINGTON (AP) ? President Bush promised on Thursday to veto Democratic-drafted legislation requiring the government to negotiate with drug companies for lower prices under Medicare. The House is to debate and vote Friday on the bill, which is one of a handful of priority items for Democrats who gained control of Congress in last fall's elections.

"Government interference impedes competition, limits access to lifesaving drugs, reduces convenience for beneficiaries and ultimately increases costs to taxpayers, beneficiaries and all American citizens alike," the administration said in a written statement.

Further, it said, competition already "is reducing prices to seniors, providing a wide range of choices and leading to a more productive environment for the development of new drugs."

Bush had already threatened to veto another of the top six bills Democrats are pushing across the House floor in the first two weeks of the new Congress. That's the measure, approved Thursday, to expand the extent to which federal funds could be used for embryonic stem cell research.

Several Democrats campaigned last fall as critics of the two-year-old program that offers prescription drug coverage under Medicare, saying it tilted too heavily toward profits for the pharmaceutical and insurance industries.

Currently, private drug plans negotiate how much they'll pay for the medicine their customers take. But the legislation under consideration Friday would require the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to do so.

"It is clear Medicare can do better and we are insisting that they do so," said Rep. John Dingell, R-Mich., the bill's author.

Democrats have said they would use the savings produced by the negotiations to reduce a coverage gap that is common in many plans.

Republicans argue that individual insurance companies already negotiate lower prices on behalf of their customers, and that the Democratic approach was tantamount to calling for federal price controls.

They note that the program is coming in under budget and seniors are expressing support for the benefit.

"What we set out to do, we accomplished," said Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., during a hearing Thursday about the drug benefit. "We had a success, a very big success."

Also, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office said the legislation was unlikely to result in lower prices.

"The secretary would be unable to negotiate prices across the broad range of covered Part D drugs that are more favorable than those obtained by (the plans) under current law," Donald B. Marron, the CBO's acting director, has written.

Actuaries for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services came to the same conclusion Thursday.

Dingell, a leading supporter of the legislation, dismissed the CBO's letter.

"This isn't the first time the Congress and CBO differed on the amount of savings a particular bill would achieve," he said. "Common sense tells you that negotiating with the purchasing power of 43 million Medicare beneficiaries behind you would result in lower drug prices."

The legislation, expected on the House floor on Friday, also would ban any attempt to limit the array of drugs available to Medicare beneficiaries by creating formularies. That stands in contrast to the Veterans Administration, which has lower prices for its beneficiaries but uses formularies that limit patient choice.

Under the Medicare prescription drug program, insurance companies offer competing coverage plans, and seniors may enroll in the one they like best. The administration announced on Wednesday that 23.5 million seniors had enrolled in stand-alone plans as of Jan. 1.

While a majority of seniors are expressing satisfaction with the program, surveys also indicate that they overwhelmingly want the government to have the power to negotiate drug prices.

A survey of seniors for the Kaiser Family Foundation showed that about 81% of seniors want to let the government use its buying power to negotiate drug prices, including 67% who said they strongly favor such negotiations. Democrats say that another survey showed that requiring government negotiations polled more favorably than any other issue that Democrats included for their first 100 hours of the new Congress.

The issue is expected to have a tougher time in the Senate. However, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., gave supporters of the measure a lift on Thursday when he said the total prohibition on government negotiations for Medicare beneficiaries should be eliminated.

"I do not buy the argument that the sky will fall on the prescription drug market if we remove this clause," said Baucus, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction over Medicare.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/20...-medicare_x.htm
 

FutureGM

Muckdog
Joined
Jul 6, 2003
Messages
10,845
Reaction score
5
This shall be overturned by the House and Senate
I hope so.

This will be a bad thing for the President, as he his going against public opinion on the stem-cell issue.
 

Dodge

Muckdog
Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
12,304
Reaction score
0
I love this President, he clearly gives a damn about people by keeping things unaffordable. :|
 

Das Texan

Loria can kiss my ass
Moderator
VIP
Joined
Aug 18, 2002
Messages
21,377
Reaction score
92
he is a lame duck.


if this new iraq plan blows up in his face like the prior iraq plan, then he will just continue to cement his legacy as one of the worst men to ever occupy the white house.
 

FutureGM

Muckdog
Joined
Jul 6, 2003
Messages
10,845
Reaction score
5
If he goes into Iran, that will make it official that he is the worst President ever.
 

Jimmy42Jack0

Muckdog
Joined
Jan 17, 2005
Messages
4,914
Reaction score
0
If he goes into Iran, that will make it official that he is the worst President ever.
not that id be the one to do it or anything like that...but if he even tries to go into iran...i think someone A. tries to have W. removed or B. spares millions of lives by putting a bullet in the madman before he tries to end the world
 
Joined
Dec 23, 2003
Messages
5,865
Reaction score
18
The best scenario would be to let Iran build a nuke and wipe out Israel, regardless those lousy Israelis deserve it for all the treachery theyve committed over the years, includign lying about the holocaust. Enoguh about that.


Amniotic fluid stem cells are the way of the future, just as useful as the embryonic ones. So lets fund those and do whats best.
 

Baldeagle037

Muckdog
Joined
Jul 29, 2005
Messages
303
Reaction score
0
The best scenario would be to let Iran build a nuke and wipe out Israel, regardless those lousy Israelis deserve it for all the treachery theyve committed over the years, includign lying about the holocaust. Enoguh about that.


Amniotic fluid stem cells are the way of the future, just as useful as the embryonic ones. So lets fund those and do whats best.

Well said!!
 

BullDurham

Muckdog
Joined
Oct 30, 2003
Messages
1,501
Reaction score
0
Now who's being the unethical one? Taking stem cells from amniotic fluid? Do you know how painful an amniocentesis normally is to the mother? And who are you going to coax to do that except mothers who are already at an increased risk of giving birth to a child with a chromosomal abnormality?
 

FutureGM

Muckdog
Joined
Jul 6, 2003
Messages
10,845
Reaction score
5
Plain and simple, I don't want the USA doing Israel's work in going after Iran. If they want a war with them so badly, have them do it on their own.
 

DaGreatOne

Muckdog
Joined
Jun 23, 2003
Messages
3,312
Reaction score
0
Plain and simple, I don't want the USA doing Israel's work in going after Iran. If they want a war with them so badly, have them do it on their own.

You know that wont ever happen the Israel lobby is way to powerful for the US to stay out.
 

Flying_Mollusk

Muckdog
Joined
Nov 14, 2003
Messages
5,230
Reaction score
0
Now who's being the unethical one? Taking stem cells from amniotic fluid? Do you know how painful an amniocentesis normally is to the mother? And who are you going to coax to do that except mothers who are already at an increased risk of giving birth to a child with a chromosomal abnormality?

Good point. It's the typical inconsistency. An embryo's life is immensely valuable and must be saved, except when the unused ones are tossed. But once a person is born, well then the life is not as valuable and we can be loose with executing, torturing, and abandoning our fellow man.
 

Dodge

Muckdog
Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
12,304
Reaction score
0
Now who's being the unethical one? Taking stem cells from amniotic fluid? Do you know how painful an amniocentesis normally is to the mother? And who are you going to coax to do that except mothers who are already at an increased risk of giving birth to a child with a chromosomal abnormality?

Good point. It's the typical inconsistency. An embryo's life is immensely valuable and must be saved, except when the unused ones are tossed. But once a person is born, well then the life is not as valuable and we can be loose with executing, torturing, and abandoning our fellow man.

Yes, and it's more sensible to be pro-choice and anti-capital punishment. :mischief
 

Flying_Mollusk

Muckdog
Joined
Nov 14, 2003
Messages
5,230
Reaction score
0
Now who's being the unethical one? Taking stem cells from amniotic fluid? Do you know how painful an amniocentesis normally is to the mother? And who are you going to coax to do that except mothers who are already at an increased risk of giving birth to a child with a chromosomal abnormality?

Good point. It's the typical inconsistency. An embryo's life is immensely valuable and must be saved, except when the unused ones are tossed. But once a person is born, well then the life is not as valuable and we can be loose with executing, torturing, and abandoning our fellow man.

Yes, and it's more sensible to be pro-choice and anti-capital punishment. :mischief

I'm neither fully pro-choice nor fully anti-capital punishment. I think it's important to understand the nuances of both issues. I can appreciate the termination of a fetus at a point in the pregnancy as being an immoral act. And I can also appreciate the need to remove the world of certain men.

If a person thinks that the termination of a third trimester fetus is perfectly fine but the execution of a killer is not, then yeah, they are inconsistent too.

But how is a five day old test tube fertilized embryo a life?

It seems to me that there is a large area of rational compromise in the cross-section of the abortion and death penalty debate. But trying to claim the immorality of testing on disposed embryos doesn't fit. That's probably why the mass majority of the country is ok with it.
 

The_Punisher

Muckdog
Joined
Dec 7, 2003
Messages
4,455
Reaction score
1
Do you guys even realize what stem cells can do for you? It can easily convert itself into any organ in the body including the heart which can save lives, and can easily be the cure for cancer and aids, but does the president care? But wait there is more, he is also pulling for the USA to sell medicine at a higher rate, am I missing something here or is this clearly corporate America at it's worst, goes to show who is the REAL evil empire, if something isn't done soon this will no-longer be the land of the free. They already started by approving a law that now allows the FBI to check your personal mail, email and communication such as telephones and all.
 

FutureGM

Muckdog
Joined
Jul 6, 2003
Messages
10,845
Reaction score
5
It's no surprise that Bush plans to veto the Medicare bill. He has ALWAYS been a HUGE supporter of business, to the point where some of them can break laws and get away with it easily.

Remember the ban on Canadian drugs coming into the U.S.? What do you think that was about?

Don't forget the tax breaks and major incentives to the airlines, oil companies, and other large businesses.

I would be willing to bet a lot that this is the most pro-big business White House in our nation's history. He's like the opposite of Teddy Roosevelt.
 

Top Bottom