GOP group launches $2.9M ad campaign against Medicare negotiating drug prices

GOP group launches $2.9M ad campaign against Medicare negotiating drug prices
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A leading GOP-aligned group is launching a $2.9 million ad campaign to fight back against calls to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices.

The ad campaign from the American Action Network (AAN) targets 46 Republican House lawmakers and 11 Republican senators, calling on them not to break ranks and join the Democratic proposal.

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The mail, print and digital ad campaign comes as efforts to lower drug prices ramp up. While members of both parties are calling for action, Republicans have still largely steered clear of the signature Democratic proposal to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices directly.

“Government interference will limit seniors’ choices in Medicare Part D” reads a mail ad from the group, next to photos of Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersHow to stand out in the crowd: Kirsten Gillibrand needs to find her niche Biden, Sanders edge Trump in hypothetical 2020 matchups in Fox News poll O'Rourke tests whether do-it-yourself campaign can work on 2020 stage MORE (I-Vt.) and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiHow to stand out in the crowd: Kirsten Gillibrand needs to find her niche Omar controversies shadow Dems at AIPAC Five things to watch as AIPAC conference kicks off MORE (D-Calif.).

The GOP lawmakers being targeted include some of the more vulnerable GOP senators up for reelection in 2020, such as Sens. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerHow to stand out in the crowd: Kirsten Gillibrand needs to find her niche Overnight Defense: Trump to reverse North Korea sanctions imposed by Treasury | Move sparks confusion | White House says all ISIS territory in Syria retaken | US-backed forces report heavy fighting | Two US troops killed in Afghanistan Overnight Health Care: CDC pushes for expanding HIV testing, treatment | Dem group launches ads attacking Trump on Medicare, Medicaid cuts | Hospitals, insurers spar over surprise bills | O'Rourke under pressure from left on Medicare for all MORE (R-Colo.) and Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisOvernight Health Care: CDC pushes for expanding HIV testing, treatment | Dem group launches ads attacking Trump on Medicare, Medicaid cuts | Hospitals, insurers spar over surprise bills | O'Rourke under pressure from left on Medicare for all Dem group launches ads attacking Trump's 'hypocrisy on Medicare and Medicaid cuts' Trump keeps tight grip on GOP MORE (R-N.C.).   

“Liberal politicians are pushing harder than ever to bring government bureaucrats between seniors and their doctors with plans that would restrict access to medicines in the Medicare Part D Program,” Dan Conston, AAN’s president, said in a statement. “We encourage seniors to call their Members of Congress and tell them to keep fighting bureaucratic inference in Medicare Part D."

Opponents of Medicare negotiating drug prices argue that the idea will only work if the government has the power to exclude coverage of certain drugs, in order to gain leverage in the negotiations. They say the government should not be deciding which drugs are covered.

Proponents say Medicare using its negotiating power will bring down drug costs that are unacceptably high.