The Manchin-Schumer bill is a monstrosity, as seen in the column in the space above this and also in the two pieces posted here. Follow the links embedded in the headlines of each to read the full, original column.

Provision to ‘control’ Medicare drug prices will kill people (Aug. 4): Among the many wrongheaded features of the Manchin-Schumer tax-and-spendathon bill being pushed in Congress right now, the one on prescription drug pricing is a deadly vampire of a proposal that, for 16 years, has refused to stay deceased.

After numerous rejections of the idea by previous Congresses, this bill again revives a proposal to direct Medicare officials to “negotiate” at least some drug prices with pharmaceutical companies rather than let existing market forces set the prices. … This theory is nonsense on so many levels that it’s hard to know where to begin in countering it.

Let’s start with facts: The Medicare Part D prescription drug program has already, ever since the program was begun in 2006, kept the cost of medicines (and of premiums for insurance coverage) significantly below projections and often kept price hikes below the inflation rate in the rest of the economy….  The government’s new mandated price controls and penalties on pharmaceutical companies would greatly discourage research, development, and innovation. As a Wall Street Journal editorial explained in great detail, one result almost surely would be “fewer treatment options for desperately ill cancer patients.” ….

Democrats commit political suicide with this bill (Aug. 5): By embracing the Manchin-Schumer tax-and-spend bill, congressional Democrats are poised to commit political hari-kari in the middle of an election year.

The public is clamoring for virtually nothing contained in this bloated bill, which meanwhile contains all sorts of provisions that will infuriate large blocs of voters. [Too see just how self-destructive this bill is, let us count the ways….]


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