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Sanders: Trump must stop French company’s exclusive Zika vaccine deal

Sanders: Trump must stop French company’s exclusive Zika vaccine deal
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Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersSenators pledge action on Saudi journalist’s disappearance Senators concerned as Trump official disputes UN climate change warning Jake Tapper hits Trump over 'Medicare for all' op-ed: ‘It’s only an hourlong show, we can’t get into every lie’ MORE (I-Vt.) is pressuring President Trump to stop the Army from giving a French company the exclusive license to a vaccine against the Zika virus.

In a New York Times op-ed published Saturday, Sanders criticized French pharmaceutical company Sanofi, noting the firm has already gotten $43 million from the Department of Health and Human Services to develop a vaccine with the Army and is expected to receive $130 million more in federal funding.

“If Mr. Trump allows this deal, Sanofi will be able to charge whatever astronomical price it wants for its vaccine,” Sanders wrote. 

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“Before President Trump makes this deal, he must guarantee that Sanofi will not turn around and gouge American consumers, Medicare and Medicaid or our military when it sells the vaccine.”

Sanders listed past instances of drug companies gouging customers with high prices after receiving millions in government money to develop drugs.

“Under this insane system, Americans pay twice. First we pay to create these lifesaving drugs, then we pay high prices to buy those drugs,” he wrote.

“American consumers should not be forced to pay the highest price in the world for a vaccine we paid to help develop.”

He pressed Trump, who styles himself a savvy dealmaker, to “negotiate a better deal for the taxpayers of this country and our soldiers.”