Published: Fri, March 10, 2017
National | By Miranda Cannon

Trump, Dems Look for Common Ground on Drug Prices

Trump, Dems Look for Common Ground on Drug Prices

Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland said in a statement he's looking forward to discussing Trump's campaign pledge to stem the rise of drug prices. In a press conference last month, the president said he had been scheduled to meet with Cummings, but the congressman backed out of the meeting because, in Mr. Trump's telling, "He was probably told, 'Don't meet with Trump. Fifty-eight percent of your youth is unemployed", Trump said at the time. "We went to talk about prescription drugs ... and I thought he was very enthusiastic about our proposal to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices, just as they do with Medicaid", Cummings said.

Cummings responded that Trump had made up that story. President Trump is going to be the president for the next four years.

Cummings, a longtime resident of Baltimore, said he urged the president to acknowledge that not all African-American-majority neighborhoods are "places of depression [and] where people are being harmed".

Cummings said he left a binder with the legislation at the White House, and was hoping to hear within two weeks whether Trump would be able to support it.

Welch, a Democrat, said the legislation would eliminate the noninterference clause and direct the secretary to negotiate lower prices with drug manufacturers and create a formula to further leverage the purchasing power of the federal government.

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"But hopefully, we will get to the bottom of this", Cummings said.

The statement did not mention Cummings' comments about Trump's language regarding African-American communities or voting.

The two are set to meet on Wednesday and the issue at hand will be prescription drug prices. "We're not expecting support from Republicans based on history", Cummings said, "but President Trump said he would do everything he can to get the support from his party". "I don't know how much more you can ask".

"Access to affordable medicine is critical to effective care, both in the hospital setting and after patients return home", Miller said.

After the tweet, pharmaceutical stock prices fell - led by biotechnology companies - which use complicated engineering techniques to develop drugs, contributing to their high cost.

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