While Biden-Harris Were Busy Distracting Us With Other Outrages, More Democrats Have Been Doing Big Pharma’s Bidding (and Screwing Conservatives)

AP Photo/Jessica Hill

It’s been an insane few weeks in the news with the Biden-Harris administration causing outrage after outrage for conservatives, and giving their fellow party members ample opportunity to completely not notice less attention-grabbing, but still pretty bad stuff they’ve been up to us and in support of Big Pharma.


We’ve had Kamala Harris traveling to Tennessee to meet with three legislators gone rogue, two of whom were expelled from the legislature. We’ve had the administration weighing straight-up ignoring judicial decisions on abortion. We’ve had a major intelligence leak that undermines a lot of what Biden-Harris have been telling us about foreign policy, especially concerning Russia and Ukraine. We’ve had the Democratic Party as a whole respond to a shooting of children by a transgender individual by focusing on the need to protect and affirm transgender individuals as opposed to focusing attention on dead children.

So it’s not surprising that conservatives may have missed something really nefarious that has been going on that also runs directly counter to the interests of many of us but is just nowhere near as headline-grabbing. However, pay attention: Recently, Big Pharma has been building better relationships with Democrats after years of fighting between the industry and progressives over things like drug prices. And it’s about to mean less well-funded healthcare providers and fewer drug discounts in rural, working-class red areas.

Here is what is going on: Democrats in Northeastern blue states have started to dabble in doing a little of Big Pharma’s bidding on a major priority: Paring back the 340B drug discount program.


I’ve covered this before, but more has happened since then. Way more.

In Connecticut, the General Assembly’s Joint Committee on Public Health passed the bill I wrote about that would hammer this program – a program that disproportionately benefits rural, working-class voters – on a 25-12 party-line vote. All 25 of the Committee’s Democrats voted in favor of the bill. Contrary to what you might think, Connecticut does still have a reasonably sizable number of blue-collar, working-class people, the sort of people that followed Donald Trump into the Republican coalition, and most of them are in the 2nd and 5th Congressional Districts, and are the kind of voters who supported figures like former Rep. Rob Simmons in the early 2000s. These patients disproportionately rely on the 340B program, and they will be hurt by this move.

But they don’t vote for Lamont, so tough luck for them, right?

New York Governor Kathy Hochul, Big Pharma Friend
AP Photo/Hans Pennink

In New York, Kathy Hochul has moved to seize all available drug discounts for the state itself, denying them to providers. Again, this really hurts people in places like Rep. Elise Stefanik’s district (part of why Stefanik is such a staunch defender of the program), but ironically, because it also hurts HIV-positive people especially and some of the louder members of that crowd happen to be gay, Hochul’s move has actually gotten her disinvited from gay pride parades. That is literally how poorly the move is being received. It’s hated by people who lean deeply progressive, to say nothing of voters in Stefanik’s district.


Meanwhile, in Maine, Democrat Sen. Michael Tipping, a progressive from Orono, just introduced a bill that copycats the “transparency” approach Lamont has been pursuing in Connecticut. It would mandate that 340B hospitals file annual reports breaking down 340B drug discount program savings and requiring a bunch of other disclosures related to hospitals’ involvement in the program. Again, as with the Connecticut bill, this all sounds harmless. What could be wrong with greater transparency, right?

As I explained before: In theory? Nothing. But, given that the hospitals concerned are often teetering right on the verge of bankruptcy, they can’t exactly afford to hire a new bureaucrat to pore through all this information and make all the proposed disclosures. Nor can they afford to pull, say, a nurse off of a shift in the Emergency Room and have her try to do it.

All of this is occurring against the backdrop of HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, who basically made his career previously as California Attorney General suing the Trump administration for everything imaginable, just recently telling a House Energy & Commerce health subcommittee hearing last week that the 340B program “doesn’t have the transparency we need.”

It’s not clear why Democrats seem to be so eager to do Big Pharma’s bidding on this stuff. Maybe COVID policy showed them they have a lot more than they realized in common with progressives, ideologically. Maybe current culture war debates cause them and Democrats to more naturally align. Maybe Democrats feel guilty for having supposedly hit Pharma hard with efforts to bring down drug prices in their so-called Inflation Reduction Act (which notably were very weak sauce compared to what President Trump had proposed). Maybe it’s all part of the massive political realignment we’re seeing.


But conservatives, especially those living in rural, working-class areas, should be aware because these changes could have a real impact on medical services in our communities.


Join the conversation as a VIP Member

Trending on RedState Videos