Lawmakers Hit Brick Wall As Shkreli Pleads The Fifth At Price Gouging Hearing
The former Turing CEO smirked his way through questions from the committee members who grew increasingly exasperated with his refusal to provide answers about his company's high drug costs.
The New York Times:
Martin Shkreli Invokes The Fifth Amendment In House Appearance
Martin Shkreli’s grilling by Congress on Thursday proved to be the spectacle that many had long anticipated. Lawmakers excoriated him. He fidgeted, he smirked, he smiled for the cameras. And he refused to answer questions. Mr. Shkreli, the former chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, who is facing federal securities fraud charges, repeatedly exercised his Fifth Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination, infuriating members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. (Pollack and Huetteman, 2/4)
'It's Not Funny, Mr. Shkreli. People Are Dying.'
Martin Shkreli, the former drug executive who became the poster boy for extreme drug price increases, held his tongue as members of Congress blasted him at a hearing Thursday — but he managed to enrage the lawmakers even more as he smirked his way through the hearing. (Nather, 2/4)
The Wall Street Journal:
Martin Shkreli Pleads The Fifth Before Congress
Mr. Shkreli, who gained unwelcome notoriety for a 50-fold increase in the price of one lifesaving medication, stole the show. But beyond the theatrics, the crux of the hearing came in the more serious probing of top executives from Turing Pharmaceuticals AG and Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., as well as Food and Drug Administration officials, on drug costs. The lawmakers sought to better understand the motivation behind drugmakers that acquire the rights to sell long-standing drugs in the U.S. and then inflate the prices, and they also explored what can be done to curb the fast-rising costs. There were lots of questions, few solutions, and some signs of change. (Armour and Rockoff, 2/4)
House Hearing Probes The Mystery Of High Drug Prices That 'Nobody Pays'
Members of Congress at a Thursday hearing wrestled with questions about why the prices of some old drugs are rising so fast. Once Shkreli left Thursday's hearing, lawmakers grilled other witnesses about rising drug prices. The seemingly simple question about how much Daraprim costs in the real world proved pretty tricky to pin down. (Kodjak, 2/4)
How More Generics Could Relieve Sky-High Drug Prices
For the second time in two weeks, Congress set its sights on generic drugs. Members of the House Oversight Committee are worked up over some of the price gouging we’ve seen in the past six months. (Gorenstein, 2/4)
The Wall Street Journal:
5 Things To Know About Today’s Drug-Price Hearing
Substantial price increases for certain drugs have turned the spotlight on industry figures like Martin Shkreli, sparked concerns about the business model of drug company Valeant Pharmaceuticals and triggered Congressional probes. A hearing by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Thursday was watched closely not only by those following the outspoken Mr. Shkreli but many wondering if Congress or regulators might take action to curb drug-price gouging. (Rockoff, 2/4)
Shkreli Insults Congress On Twitter After Refusing To Testify
Former Turing Pharmaceuticals Chief Executive Officer Martin Shkreli on Thursday called members of the U.S. Congress "imbeciles" on Twitter, moments after he refused to testify before a House of Representatives committee on why his company raised the price of a lifesaving medicine 5,000 percent. "Hard to accept that these imbeciles represent the people in our government," said Shkreli, using his @MartinShkreli Twitter handle. (Burns, 2/4)
Martin Shkreli Calls Lawmakers 'Imbeciles'
The drug industry’s most notorious CEO pleaded the Fifth Amendment before Congress on Thursday and then promptly called lawmakers "imbeciles" on Twitter. The appearance of the hoodie-wearing, hip-hop-loving indicted millennial multimillionaire created congressional theatrics — even though the usually chatty businessman, who showed up Thursday wearing a suit and no tie, stayed silent during the House hearing. Democrats, including the presidential contenders, portray Shkreli as the face of an industry that increasingly puts profit above patients. Republicans, who oppose more government intervention in health care, depict him as a “bad apple,” an outlier besmirching an industry dedicated to life-saving innovation. (Karlin, 2/4)
The Wall Street Journal:
Valeant Needs More Volume Amid The Noise
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International emerged from a congressional grilling over its pricing policies with its share price intact. Questions about Valeant’s business model will still linger. It is an understatement that Thursday’s House Oversight Committee hearing was uncomfortable to watch. For instance, Rep. Buddy Carter (R., Ga.) told representatives of Valeant and closely held Turing Pharmaceuticals that he found their companies’ conduct “repulsive.” Valeant interim CEO Howard Schiller acknowledged the company had made mistakes in its past. (Grant, 2/4)