Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices

Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegOvernight Health Care — Presented by Coalition Against Surprise Medical Billing — Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices | Supreme Court abortion case poses major test for Trump picks | Trump takes heat from right over vaping crackdown Democratic candidates’ polling and fundraising numbers don’t quite match up Democratic strategist on Harris slump: ‘She’s coming across as a typical politician’ MORE on Monday unveiled a far-reaching plan to lower the cost of prescription drugs, the latest tough proposal from the party’s 2020 hopefuls.

Buttigieg would allow both Medicare and the new public option plan he would create to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs, and those lower prices would be available to people with private insurance too. 

The South Bend, Ind., mayor would cap out-of-pocket drug costs in Medicare at $200 per month and force drug companies to pay rebates back if their prices rose faster than inflation. 

For the “worst offender” companies, he would exercise rarely used authority under current law to strip firms of their patents if they were not offering a drug at a reasonable price. 

Buttigieg, who is behind the top tier of candidates in the polls, tied his plan to his argument for installing a younger generation of leaders such as himself. 

“It’s time for a new era of leadership in Washington who will finally make drugs affordable and take on pharmaceutical companies,” he said. 

Lowering drug prices is a top priority for voters and an idea that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump campaign slams Minneapolis mayor, Target Center for ‘attempting to extort’ them with rally security fees Susan Rice calls Trump decision to pull troops from Syria ‘batshit crazy’ Ex-Trump officials met with Zelensky campaign aides at Trump hotel earlier this year: report MORE has embraced as well, though he has yet to take major action. That has led Democratic candidates to come out with a variety of aggressive plans.  

Bold plans to crack down on pharmaceutical companies has been a theme in the Democratic primary, with tough plans both from the more moderate side and from leading progressives. 

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenA dozen House Democrats call on EU ambassador to resign amid Ukraine scandal Ex-Trump officials met with Zelensky campaign aides at Trump hotel earlier this year: report Overnight Health Care — Presented by Coalition Against Surprise Medical Billing — Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices | Supreme Court abortion case poses major test for Trump picks | Trump takes heat from right over vaping crackdown MORE, for example, also has a tough plan that would set up an independent review board to set a reasonable price for new drugs, among other steps. 

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann Warren40 state attorneys general to take part in Facebook antitrust probe: report Overnight Health Care — Presented by Coalition Against Surprise Medical Billing — Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices | Supreme Court abortion case poses major test for Trump picks | Trump takes heat from right over vaping crackdown On The Money: Judge tosses Trump lawsuit over NY tax return subpoena | US, Japan sign trade deals | Trump faces narrowing window for trade deals | NBA sparks anger with apology to China MORE (D-Mass.) would allow the government to manufacture lower-cost generic drugs itself, while Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersLobbyists pan Sanders proposal to end corporate donations for party conventions Klobuchar pulls in nearly million in third quarter, campaign says Democratic candidates’ polling and fundraising numbers don’t quite match up MORE (I-Vt.) would tie drug prices to lower prices paid in other countries. 

The “Medicare for All” plan backed by Warren and Sanders would also give the government much more power in setting lower prices for drugs.       

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