Overnight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Democrats seek to preempt Trump message on health care | E-cigarette executives set for grilling | Dems urge emergency funding for coronavirus

Overnight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Democrats seek to preempt Trump message on health care | E-cigarette executives set for grilling | Dems urge emergency funding for coronavirus
© Greg Nash

Welcome to Tuesday's Overnight Health Care... Pre-State of the Union edition.

We expect President TrumpDonald TrumpProsecutors focus Trump Organization probe on company's financial officer: report WHO official says it's 'premature' to think pandemic will be over by end of year Romney released from hospital after fall over the weekend MORE will make some health care talk tonight, likely including a call to lower drug prices and possibly administrative action to lower the price of insulin. He is also likely to swipe at "socialism" in the Democratic party, especially in "Medicare for All."

Trump may also mention abortion, after becoming the first sitting president this month to address the March for Life in person. 


But first we'll start with a look at how Democrats are eager to pivot from impeachment to health care...


Dems seek to pre-empt Trump message on health care:

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiRepublican Ohio Senate candidate calls on GOP rep to resign over impeachment vote Clinton, Pelosi holding online Women's Day fundraiser with Chrissy Teigen, Amanda Gorman What good are the intelligence committees? MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerFirst Black secretary of Senate sworn in Republican Ohio Senate candidate calls on GOP rep to resign over impeachment vote The bizarre back story of the filibuster MORE (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday called for President Trump to withdraw his administration's legal position calling for striking down the Affordable Care Act. 

Speaking at a press conference with House and Senate Democrats, Schumer noted that Trump is likely to tout his administration's actions on health care in his speech Tuesday night. 

But he and Pelosi argued that the most consequential administration health care action is the GOP lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act that the Trump administration is supporting. 

"Mr. President, if you really care about health care, you'll announce tonight that you're withdrawing your Texas lawsuit that would remove all protections for pre-existing conditions," Schumer said.


Big picture: The press conference is a sign of the political advantage Democrats sense on the issue of health care, which helped them win back the House in 2018, and their desire not to cede the spotlight on the issue to Trump, who is eager to tout health care moves of his own ahead of the 2020 election.

Read more here



More 2020 messaging...


Democrats slam GOP on drug prices in bilingual digital ads

The House Democrats' campaign arm Tuesday released a batch of digital ads in English and Spanish slamming Republicans for blocking drug pricing legislation while taking contributions from big pharma.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) ads, timed for release with the State of the Union address, will hit vulnerable Republicans in eight districts.

The English-language ads will target Republican Reps. Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerSix ways to visualize a divided America House panel spars over GameStop frenzy, trading apps Republicans rally to keep Cheney in power MORE (Mo.), Jefferson Van Drew (N.J.), Lee ZeldinLee ZeldinSunday shows preview: Lawmakers weigh in on Trump impeachment trial; Biden administration eyes timeline for mass vaccinations NY Republicans want Justice Department to subpoena Cuomo over nursing homes Sunday shows preview: New COVID-19 variants spread in US; Redditors shake Wall Street with Gamestop stock MORE (N.Y.), Don Bacon (Neb.), Fred UptonFrederick (Fred) Stephen UptonUpton censured for vote to remove Marjorie Taylor Greene from Education Committee Is the 'civil war' in the Republican Party really over? Michigan GOP committee deadlocks on resolution to censure Meijer over impeachment vote MORE (Mich.), and Andy BarrAndy BarrFinancial regulators home in on climate risks House Republicans who didn't sign onto the Texas lawsuit OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Energy issues rule allowing companies to develop own efficiency tests for products | GOP lawmakers push back on Federal Reserve's climate risk efforts MORE (Ky.).

Reps. Ross SpanoVincent (Ross) Ross SpanoGOP keeps control of Florida House seat held by Rep. Ross Spano 10 bellwether House races to watch on election night The Hill's Morning Report - Jill Biden urges country to embrace her husband MORE (Fla.) and David SchweikertDavid SchweikertBiden meets with bipartisan senators to discuss potential infrastructure bill Lawmakers offer competing priorities for infrastructure plans The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Which path will Democrats take on COVID-19 bill? MORE (Ariz.) will be targeted with English- and Spanish-language ads.

More on the drug pricing ads here.



Advocates knock 'damnable lie' on pre-existing conditions

The pro-ObamaCare group Protect Our Care is launching a new digital ad knocking what they said is Trump's "most absurd lie" about health care: his claim that he "saved" protections for pre-existing conditions. 

The ad-- which features a clip of MSNBC host Joe ScarboroughCharles (Joe) Joseph ScarboroughScarborough says comparisons of Capitol riot to summer protests irrelevant Scarborough: 'Pence is in fear for his life because of Donald J. Trump' Can the media regain credibility under Biden? MORE saying Trump's claim is "just a damnable lie"-- will air in battleground states Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.  

Take a look at the ad here.


Coming tomorrow: E-cigarette executives set for grilling over youth vaping

Executives from five of the largest e-cigarette companies are set to be grilled by House lawmakers on Wednesday about rising youth vaping rates, the first hearing since the Trump administration announced a limited ban on vaping flavors.


The committee will hear from the CEOs of Juul, Reynolds American and NJOY, as well as the presidents of Logic and Fontem.

Juul has long been the target of lawmakers' ire, as congressional investigators have probed the company's role in the youth vaping crisis. But the hearing will mark the first time that executives from the other companies have testified.

The companies represent 97 percent of the $19.3 billion U.S. e-cigarette market.

What advocates want to hear: 

  • A promise from executives to not change the labeling on mint to sell it as menthol
  • Executives committing to removing all of their flavored products from the market, even those that are exempted from the administration's ban, like disposable, single-use vapes
  • Whether the companies plan to file applications for products that are banned under the current policy, like mango and mint flavors
  • What the companies will do to stop youth vaping

Read more here.


And in coronavirus news...


HHS, pharmaceutical firm collaborating on coronavirus treatment

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said Tuesday that it is collaborating with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals on a coronavirus treatment. 

HHS said it would work with the company on monoclonal antibodies, which help prevent a virus from infecting human cells. 

Regeneron previously worked on this type of treatment for Ebola and Middle East respiratory syndrome. 

HHS is working with the company through a unit known as the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA). 

"Working as public-private partners like we have with Regeneron since 2014, we can move rapidly to respond to new global health threats," said BARDA Director Rick Bright. 

Read more here.


Democrats urge emergency funding for coronavirus outbreak

House Democrats want Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to request a package of emergency supplemental funding to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

"Further resources will be necessary to support an aggressive and comprehensive government-wide response to the 2019 novel Coronavirus, both domestically and internationally," House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyTrump seeks to freeze .4 billion of programs in final week of presidency This week: Trump's grip on Hill allies faces test Trump signs .3T relief, spending package MORE (D-N.Y.) and Labor, Health and Human Services subcommittee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauroRosa DeLauroKey Democrat unveils plan to restore limited earmarks Acting chief acknowledges police were unprepared for mob Democratic women sound alarm on female unemployment MORE (D-Conn.) wrote Azar in a letter.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it is already depleting the $105 million rapid response fund, and on Sunday Azar notified Congress that the department was looking at transferring $136 million from other programs. Democrats are seeking additional funding in part to ensure that the administration does not transfer funds from priority programs important to Democrats, such as National Institutes of Health or Head Start programs.

Read more on the funding issues here.


Sponsored Content — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future

Any one-size-fits-all new government health insurance system, whether it’s called Medicare for All, the public option or Medicare buy-in, would mean higher costs for patients. Learn more.


What we're reading

Sensing an advantage, Democrats dare Trump to talk drug prices during State of the Union (Stat News)

Beyond burnout: Docs decry 'moral injury' from financial pressures of health care (Kaiser Health News)

40 percent of Iowa caucusgoers said health care was their top priority (Axios)

Democrats to bring insulin users to State of the Union to troll Trump (Washington Examiner)


State by state

Colorado state rep resigned to take job in Trump's Department of Health and Human Services (Denver Post)

Bill chips away at surprise medical billing in Georgia (Atlanta Journal Constitution

Connecticut religious leaders are pushing lawmakers on health care equity (CT Mirror)


From The Hill's opinion page

The shortage of physicians can be deadly for patients