By Peter Sullivan and Sarah Ferris - 03/01/16 06:11 PM EST
Sen. Dick DurbinDick DurbinClinton ally stands between Sanders and chairmanship dream Reid backs House Puerto Rico bill McConnell pledges redo vote on Zika after break MORE (D-Ill.) indicated Tuesday that Democrats will not block a measure to combat opiod abuse even if they don't get extra funds they are seeking.
"Oh we're going to support it, but we want the Shaheen amendment to pay for it," the Senate's No. 2 Democrat told reporters, referring to an effort by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenOvernight Defense: US blames ISIS for Turkey attack | Afghan visas in spending bill | Army rolls up its sleeves Senate panel passes bill that would create 4K visas for Afghans GOP senators: Brexit vote a wake-up call MORE (D-N.H.). "I'm going to vote for the bill. I think most Democrats will, but we want it to be paid for."
Durbin's comments came despite White House backing for adding funding to the legislation.
Republicans argue that any funding should go through the appropriations process. Sen. John CornynJohn CornynOvernight Tech: Obama signs FOIA reform bill | Musicians take YouTube fight to Europe | Feds probe first driverless car death Obama signs bill to expand access to federal records Lynch meeting with Bill Clinton creates firestorm for email case MORE (R-Texas) said Tuesday there is approximately $571 million in last year's omnibus bill that could be directed toward CARA.
CARA authorizes -- but doesn't appropriate -- funding for programs to combat prescription drug and heroin abuse, in addition to increasing the availability of naloxone, a drug to treat overdoses.
Democrats argue that the $600 million in emergency funding is needed to make sure communities who are fighting the overdose epidemic can get help quickly. Read more here. http://bit.ly/21GbOWY
CLINTON HITS 'PREDATORY' DRUG PRICING Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonTrump: 'I’m just flabbergasted’ by Clinton-Lynch meet AFL-CIO head: Trump’s ‘a fraud’ Sanders skirts Biden's claim that he'll endorse Clinton MORE has a new ad hitting drug prices, which have been a consistent theme of her campaign.
The new ad shows Clinton giving a campaign speech during which she reads a letter from a woman who says the price of one medication has gone from $180 in the early 1980s to $14,700 now.
"The company is called Valeant Pharmaceuticals," Clinton says. "I'm going after them. This is predatory pricing, and we're going to make sure it is stopped.
Valeant has been in the spotlight over its prices and is the subject of an investigation from the Senate Aging Committee, along with Turing Pharmaecuticals, the former firm of the now-infamous CEO Martin Shkreli. Valeant also confirmed Monday that it is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Read more here. http://bit.ly/1LTlnc9
INDUSTRY MAKES PLEDGES ON ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORDS The Obama administration on Monday announced commitments from a range of healthcare companies aimed at improving the flow of electronic health records.
The commitments are part of the administration's efforts to modernize the healthcare system and make it easier for people to access and use their electronic health records, including with new mobile apps for patients.
The pledges come from health IT developers that provide 90 percent of electronic records used by hospitals, as well as the country's five largest healthcare provider systems. Read more here. http://bit.ly/1REGNy7
Sens. Orrin HatchOrrin HatchTreasury officials to meet with lawmakers on inversion rules A bipartisan bright spot we can’t afford to pass up: child welfare reform Medicare trust fund running out of money fast MORE (Utah) and John BarrassoJohn BarrassoGOP senator: Obama ‘believes he is above the law’ Republican senator expects Trump will 'embrace' GOP platform Sunday shows preview: Bernie soldiers on MORE (Wyo.) are pressing the administration for answers about ObamaCare's special enrollment periods, which HHS has recently tightened up in response to insurer complaints. The senators' letter: http://1.usa.gov/1Ux7tU1
ON TAP TOMORROW:
It's argument time in the big Supreme Court abortion case, Whole Women's Health v. Hellerstedt
The House's Planned Parenthood committee holds its first hearing, with testimony from professors on "bioethics and fetal tissue."
House Appropriations hearing on substance abuse and mental health budget
House Energy and Commerce hearing on Zika virus
Senate Appropriations hearing on FDA budget
WHAT WE'RE READING:
Aetna CEO says he supports ObamaCare despite losses (CNN Money)
Noravax exploring options with Zika virus vaccine (Washington Business Journal)
Zika virus tied to rare disorder that can cause paralysis (Philly.com)
IN THE STATES:
State legislative primaries could impact Medicaid expansion (Modern Healthcare
States Give Women Misleading Abortion Information, Study Finds (Thomson Reuters Foundation)
Kentucky bills aim to save Kynect, Medicaid program (Courier-Journal)
ICYMI FROM THE HILL:
Senate panel advances bill blocking state GMO labeling rules