Trump fulfilled a longstanding campaign promise to lower drug prices

East Idaho News | July 20, 2020

President Donald Trump fulfilled to a longstanding campaign promise Friday — to lower drug prices.

He signed four executive orders, including ones on importing medications from Canada and basing the cost of drugs in the US on their prices in other countries — both of which progressive Democrats, including Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, have pushed.

The efforts, which largely reaffirm the policies of the administration, are unlikely to have an effect before the November election, if they ever do. Most require rule making by the Department of Health and Human Services and could be challenged in court.

Notably, however, Trump strongly advocated allowing Medicare to negotiate prices — a measure he slammed House Democrats for including in their drug price bill last December. The Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, which established Medicare’s Part D drug plan, banned such negotiation to secure the votes of Republican lawmakers.

“Under our ridiculous system, which has been broken for decades, we aren’t even allowed to negotiate the price of drugs,” Trump said Friday just prior to signing the orders. “Can you imagine? What kind of a system is that? It’s going to end.”

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