CAGW Names Rep. Elijah Cummings November 2017 Porker of the Month | Citizens Against Government Waste

CAGW Names Rep. Elijah Cummings November 2017 Porker of the Month

Press Release

For Immediate Release     Contact: Curtis Kalin 202-467-5318
November 27, 2017 


(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) its November 2017 Porker of the Month for attempting to place price controls on prescription drugs.

On October 25, 2017, Rep. Cummings introduced the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Act of 2017, and claimed his bill would, “give the government authority to negotiate lower drug prices.” 

In reality, his legislation would impose a restrictive national prescription drug formulary, similar to the one that curtails access to innovative new drugs and reduces healthcare quality at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  An October 2013 study by the Lewin Group found that Medicare Part D plans provided a “greater breadth of drug coverage than the VA formulary.”  Rep. Cummings’ bill would essentially impose price controls on prescription drugs and push Medicare Part D closer to the VA and away from the successful negotiations that already occur in Medicare and have resulted in lower program costs.  In 2005, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that Medicare Part D would cost taxpayers $172 billion by 2015; the price tag was $75 billion. 

CAGW President Tom Schatz said in a statement:  “Rep. Cummings overlooks several facts in his pursuit of government price controls.  Price controls always lead to market disruptions and shortages, and the victims in these beleaguered markets would be the very people who desperately need the medications.  Rep. Cummings also ignores the effective negotiations that already take place in Medicare Part D.  The goal in healthcare should always be market-oriented reforms that increase choices and quality, not drag Medicare down to the level of the VA.”

For pushing policies that would raise prescription drug costs for seniors and reduce access to innovative new prescription drugs, CAGW names Rep. Elijah Cummings its November 2017 Porker of the Month.

Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.  Porker of the Month is a dubious honor given to lawmakers, government officials, and political candidates who have shown a blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers.

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