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IN THE NEWS: Republicans Turn Their Backs On Americans By Blocking Critical Measure to Lower Insulin Costs for Millions

By August 8, 2022No Comments

Yesterday, Republicans in the Senate blocked a critical health care provision of the Inflation Reduction Act that would have capped insulin at $35 a month for millions of diabetics with private insurance. For years, Republican lawmakers stood by Big Pharma, fighting any reform that would lower drug prices for the American people. Insulin is a lifesaver for seven million Americans, but as drug companies hike its cost year after year, as many as one in four diabetics are forced to skip or ration their insulin — which can lead to death. 

The latest attempt to undermine the Inflation Reduction Act and keep insulin costs high shows Republicans will stop at nothing to protect drug company profits at the expense of patients. This vote disproportionately hurts people of color, rural Americans, and low-income families who have a harder time accessing quality, affordable coverage. Republicans’ decision to block this bill will undoubtedly put millions of lives at risk. 

Washington Post: Republicans Block Cap On Insulin Costs For Millions Of Patients. “Republican lawmakers on Sunday successfully stripped a $35 price cap on the cost of insulin for many patients from the ambitious legislative package Democrats are moving through Congress this weekend, invoking arcane Senate rules to jettison the measure…’Republicans have just gone on the record in favor of expensive insulin,’ said Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). ‘After years of tough talk about taking on insulin makers, Republicans have once against wilted in the face of heat from Big Pharma.’” [Washington Post, 8/7/22]

CBS: Senate Republicans Block $35 Cap On Price Of Insulin From Democratic Bill. “Senate Republicans on Sunday blocked a $35 monthly cap on the cost of insulin in the private market from being included in Democrats’ economic tax and spending package, voting down an amendment to the measure during a marathon session leading up to what Democrats hope will be final passage of the bill.” [CBS, 8/8/22]

Rolling Stone: Insulin Will Remain Expensive For Many, Thanks To Republicans. “Democrats had hoped to limit patients’ out-of-pocket cost for insulin to $35 per month as part of legislation to address inflation and climate change. But when the Senate parliamentarian ruled that the provision’s cap on private insurance is not primarily connected to the federal budget, Republicans, led by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), seized their chance to object.” [Rolling Stone, 8/7/22]

Forbes: Inflation Reduction Act: Senate GOP Blocks Insulin Price Cap For Private Insurance As Democrats Aim To Pass Economic Bill. “A provision that would have capped insulin prices for private insurers at $35 a month was blocked by Republicans on Sunday…Republicans argued the insulin price cap did not fall under the rules for reconciliation bills…” [Forbes, 8/8/22]

Axios: Insulin Price Cap For Private Insurers Pulled From Reconciliation Bill. “Senate Republicans blocked the $35 cap on out-of-pocket spending on insulin for patients enrolled in private insurance in the reconciliation package…The drug costs eight times more in the U.S. than 32 other high-income nations, according to a 2020 study commissioned by the Health and Human Services Department.” [Axios, 8/7/22]

ABC: Republicans Strip $35 Insulin Price Cap From Democrats’ Bill — But Insist Senate Rules Are To Blame. “Nearly uniform Republican opposition in the Senate on Sunday stripped a proposed cap on insulin prices in private insurance from Democrats’ party-line climate, health and tax bill…The cap’s scrapping was quickly seized on by Democrats and stirred controversy beyond them, with critics of the GOP citing the sometimes startling cost of needed insulin for diabetics.” [ABC, 8/7/22]

CNN: Democrats Lose Effort To Cap Insulin At $35 For Most Americans Before Passage Of Senate Reconciliation Bill. “The party had pushed to include a measure in their climate and health care package that passed the chamber Sunday that would place a $35 cap on insulin for those on Medicare and with private coverage…but Republicans on Sunday raised a point of order that led to a vote that limited the $35 cap to Medicare beneficiaries only.” [CNN, 8/7/22]

NBC: Republicans Block Cap On Insulin Costs For Many Americans From Democratic Deal. “Republican senators on Sunday voted down a cap on the price of insulin in the private market, removing it from Democrats’ sweeping climate and economic package.” [NBC, 8/7/22]

Los Angeles Times: Senate Democrats Pass Sweeping Healthcare, Tax And Climate Bill. “Republicans succeeded in killing one provision that violated Senate budget rules. It would have capped the price of insulin at $35 a month in the private insurance market.” [Los Angeles Times, 8/7/22]