Senators slam pharma CEO for drug pricing, Wu Tang Clan album buy

Senators slam pharma CEO for drug pricing, Wu Tang Clan album buy
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A pair of top senators lashed out Wednesday against several now-infamous drug company CEOs, including Martin Shkreli, who have been accused of price-gouging on potentially life-saving treatments.

“My biggest challenge today is to not lose my temper,” Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillDemocratic Homeland Security members request additional DHS nominee testimony Senate panel delays vote on Trump’s Homeland Security pick Steve Israel: ‘We had a better time at the DMZ than we’re going to have tonight’ MORE (D-Mo.) said. “The facts underlying this hearing are so egregious but it’s hard not to get emotional about it.”

McCaskill, who co-led the Senate’s first hearing on drug pricing this year, directed most of her attacks against Shkreli, the 32-year-old hedge fund manager-turned-CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals.

“This is the same guy who thought it was a great idea to pay millions of dollars for the only existing album of the Wu Tang Clan,” she said, to sneers throughout the room, referring to a report on Wednesday that Shkreli shelled out $2 million for the only copy of "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin," the most expensive album ever sold.

Shkreli, repeatedly dubbed “the most hated man in America,” has been under fire from congressional committees as well as presidential candidates from both parties. Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpDems win from coast to coast Falwell after Gillespie loss: 'DC should annex' Northern Virginia Dems see gains in Virginia's House of Delegates MORE recently trashed him as “a spoiled brat,” and Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersWorld leaders reach agreement on trade deal without United States: report Sanders on Brazile revelations: DNC needs ‘far more transparency’ Sen. Warren sold out the DNC MORE (I-Vt.) redirected the CEO’s campaign contribution to charity.

Shkreli, meanwhile, has basked in the attention — further inflaming his critics on Twitter after deciding to live-stream his every move for 24 straight hours.

McCaskill said she has been repeatedly shunted in her investigation of Turing, which came under fire after reports that it raised the costs of a decades-old anti-parasitic drug from $13.50 to $750 per bill.

“Valeant refused to answer my questions and instead downplayed my concerns,” she said, raising her voice. As she turned to the witness panel of mostly medical experts and doctors, McCaskill thanked her co-chair of the committee Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsBipartisan group of lawmakers aim to reform US sugar program A bipartisan bridge opens between the House and Senate Gaming the odds of any GOP tax bill getting signed into law MORE (R-Maine) because “she calms me down.”

Collins, in her slow, even tone, also blasted the companies for creating “excuses” to raise their prices without explanation.

“Some of the companies that have been the focus of our investigation look more like hedge funds than they do pharmaceutical companies,” Collins said.