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Overnight Health Care: How Republicans who voted against ObamaCare repeal fared in midterms | Cummings may call in drug companies | FDA to ban sale of flavored e-cigarettes: report

Overnight Health Care: How Republicans who voted against ObamaCare repeal fared in midterms | Cummings may call in drug companies | FDA to ban sale of flavored e-cigarettes: report
© Greg Nash

Welcome to Friday’s Overnight Health Care, where we’re looking forward to members coming back next week and asking lawmakers lots of health care questions about the new Congress!

How Republicans who voted against ObamaCare repeal fared in midterms

Democrats relentlessly hit Republicans over their votes to repeal ObamaCare during the campaign this year, but there were 20 Republicans who didn’t vote for the repeal bill last year. How did they do?

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Four of those Republicans still lost on Tuesday, despite a move to blunt one of Democrats’ most potent attacks. But nine of them, about half, ended up winning.

Another six retired and were not up for reelection. Several of those were likely to lose their races if they had run.

A sign of independence: Some Republicans ran on voting no. Rep. David JoyceDavid Patrick JoyceCandymakers meet virtually with lawmakers for annual fly-in, discuss Halloween safety Stand-alone bill to provide relief for airlines blocked on House floor Republicans shrug off Kasich's Democratic convention speech MORE (Ohio), for example, ran an ad in which he said: “When Republican leaders in Congress tried to take away protections for pre-existing conditions, I said 'no.' ”

Some still got attacked: Some Democratic ads, like one against Rep. Leonard LanceLeonard LanceThomas Kean wins GOP primary to take on Rep. Tom Malinowski Gun debate to shape 2020 races GOP fears Trump backlash in suburbs MORE (R-N.J.), simply cited his votes to repeal ObamaCare in previous years.

Click here for the full story and breakdown.

Cummings indicates he could call drug company executives to testify

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Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsWe must act on lowering cost of prescription drugs Voters elected a record number of Black women to Congress this year — none were Republican Democrats were united on top issues this Congress — but will it hold? MORE (D-Md.) will be a key player to watch next year as House Democrats seek to take on high drug prices in the majority.

Cummings, a staunch critic of drug companies, is set to become chairman of the House Oversight Committee.

He told Stat that he could call drug company executives in to testify, saying “hearing from the drug companies themselves will be an important part of our efforts.”

Legislation too: On the legislative front, Cummings will be a key player. He is cosponsoring a bill to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices, long a major priority for Democrats and something President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE has voiced support for in the past.

“Whether this legislation becomes law is very much in the president’s hands,” Rep. Lloyd DoggettLloyd Alton DoggettCongress must repeal tax breaks for the wealthy passed in CARES Act Ocasio-Cortez, progressives call on Senate not to confirm lobbyists or executives to future administration posts Trump order on drug prices faces long road to finish line MORE (D-Texas), another leading Democrat on drug pricing issues, told The Hill on Wednesday.

Read that story here.  

And Stat’s story here.

FDA to ban sale of flavored e-cigarettes: report

The Food and Drug Administration is reportedly planning to ban flavored e-cigarette products, a drastic step in response to a dramatic increase in vaping among teenagers.

According to The Washington Post, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb is expected to announce a ban on the sale of flavored e-cigarettes, which represent the majority of vaping products sold, in convenience stores and gas stations across the country. The announcement could come as soon as next week.

The agency will also impose new rules to curb illegal sales of e-cigarettes products to minors, including age-verification requirements on online sales, according to the Post.

Gottlieb has threatened a ban on flavored e-liquids if five of the products' largest manufacturers can’t come up with adequate plans to help keep e-cigarettes out of the hands of those under the age of 18.

The FDA also recently sent more than 1,300 letters to brick-and-mortar stores and online retailers warning them that they could face penalties for allegedly selling ­e-cigarettes to people younger than 18.

Read more here.

What we’re reading

Midterm election boosts Medicaid expansion, but challenges remain (Kaiser Health News)

Pelosi-Trump overtures making Big Pharma sweat bullets (Washington Examiner)

State by state

Group challenges Kansas ban on telemedicine abortions (NBC News)

'Brutal' or 'safest'? Kentucky prepares to defend abortion ban in court (Louisville Courier-Journal)