Austin, TX — Today, the Texas Democratic Party and U.S. Representatives Marc Veasey, Lloyd Doggett, and Sylvia Garcia held a press conference call hailing the passage of HR 3, the Lower Prescription Drug Costs Now Act, while urging Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and the rest of the Republicans in the United States Senate to follow the House’s lead and pass this crucial piece of legislation.
House Resolution 3 is one of the most important pieces of legislation to come through the House of Representatives in decades. House Resolution 3 will reduce negotiated drug prices by as much as 55 percent – saving patients an estimated $158 billion over the next few years and decreasing deficits by $345 billion.
Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn refuses to support this common-sense legislation, instead, introducing his own prescription drug bill that he gutted after receiving pressure from pharmaceutical and insurance industry donors. After taking more than $1.7 million from pharmaceutical and insurance industry lobbyists throughout his twenty years in Washington, Cornyn and other Senate Republicans have a simple choice to make: do they stand with the people of Texas who need relief the most, or Washington lobbyists who continue to make drug pricing unaffordable?
Congressman Marc Veasey issued the following statement:
“HR 3 is going to reverse high drug costs. HR 3 gives Medicare the power to negotiate directly with drug companies, and the lower prices negotiated by Medicare will be transparent so that private insurance companies can make the same prices available to their members.”
Congressman Lloyd Doggett issued the following statement:
“It’s really important that Senator Cornyn speak up and ask McConnell to bring this bill to the Senate floor so that it can be thoroughly debated. If he or any other Republican has a constructive idea to improve the bill, a Senate floor debate is a great place to do it, rather than to kill this bill and assign it to McConnell’s graveyard. In a really troubling way, blocking the passage of this bill is really a matter of life and death.”
Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia issued the following statement:
“This is really about giving people a lift up. As you all know, Texas has one of the highest uninsured rates in the country, and certainly, Harris County has the highest uninsured rate in the state. Coming from a Latino district with a high uninsured rate, all of this is a nice Christmas gift for them, but only if the ole Grinch does his work in the Senate. I’m not just referring to McConnell, I’m also referring to Senator Cornyn and of course Senator Cruz, because they both have a vote, but especially Cornyn because of his leadership role. I think he should be standing up for Texas.”
Texas Democratic Party Executive Director Manny Garcia issued the following statement:
“The onus is now on John Cornyn and the United States Senate to pass the crucial Lower Drug Costs Now Act. The McConnell-Cornyn legislative graveyard has already refused to take action on gun control, comprehensive immigration reform, and reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, among many other pieces of legislation that have passed the House. We cannot afford to add lowering prescription drug prices to that list.”