Republicans Renew Attack On 2009 Obama/Drug Industry Deal For Health Law
News outlets covered GOP lawmakers' release of more memos from 2009 detailing negotiations between the White House and pharmaceutical companies about supporting the health law.
Bloomberg: Obama Aides Helped Plan Ads to Back Health Bill, GOP Says
President Barack Obama’s aides helped plan a $150 million advertising campaign paid for by drug companies to support passage of the 2010 U.S. health-care system overhaul, according to memos provided by Republican lawmakers. ... The drug industry agreed to $80 billion to $125 billion in taxes, discounts and other concessions to help fund the health law’s programs. In return, they avoided potentially harmful policies, including one that would have let people import cheaper brand-name drugs into the U.S. (Armstrong, 6/8).
The New York Times: Obama Was Pushed by Drug Industry, E-Mails Suggest
[On June 3, 2009] Mr. Obama’s staff signaled a willingness to put aside support for the reimportation of prescription medicines at lower prices and by doing so solidified a compact with an industry the president had vilified on the campaign trail. Central to Mr. Obama’s drive to remake the nation’s health care system was an unlikely collaboration with the pharmaceutical industry that forced unappealing trade-offs (Baker, 6/8).
The Wall Street Journal: More Emails Emerge From 2009 Health Push
The administration has downplayed the information in the emails ... "Republicans, who previously admitted this is not serious and merely a partisan effort to distract the President’s re-election campaign, are now attempting to recycle an old story that was well covered during the original debate three years ago," said White House spokesman Eric Schultz in a statement. The emails show that drug makers hesitated to agree to pony up a lot of money for the ads without proof that their desires and concerns were reflected in the deal with the administration (Mundy, 6/8).
The Hill: Republicans Hit White House Over Role In Ads Support Healthcare Bill
Republicans on the Energy and Commerce Committee have been investigating a 2009 agreement in which the pharmaceutical industry agreed to help pay for the healthcare bill and run ads supporting it. ... The committee's investigation has produced very little new information about the deal with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), but Republicans are nevertheless rehashing the issue as they try to stoke public opposition to the healthcare law. ... the existence of a deal between Democrats and PhRMA was well documented at the time (Baker, 6/8).
The Hill: The Hill: GOP Says Healthcare Law 'Worst Offender' Among Bad Policies
Democrats' healthcare reform law – the signature domestic achievement of President Obama's first term in office – is Exhibit 1 that his policies are sinking the economy, Republicans charged in their weekly address.
... The House this week passed legislation sponsored by [Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minn.] to repeal the law's $29 billion tax on medical devices, which sailed through (Pecquet, 6/9).
CNN: Obama Talks Education, GOP Tackles Health Care In Weekly Addresses
Paulsen criticized the 2010 health reform law, the anticipated effects of which he said have caused some small businesses "to lay off workers and they may even have to shut their doors completely" (Wallace, 6/9).