The nations largest lobbying group for seniors said today that it would ratchet up pressure on a handful of mostly Republican senators who have yet to say where they stand on the issue of government negotiation for Medicare prescription drugsa measure the House already approved and the Senate is expected to consider later this month. AARP strongly supported the House measure and now said that it would put its full weight and resources behind passing similar legislation in the Senate.
AARP said that Wednesday, some of its 38 million members would call on their senators to urge them to support legislation that would give the HHS secretary direct bargaining ability with drugmakers to drive down prescription drug prices. The association also said it would make targeted ad buys in states where some 11 senators remain undecided on the bill.
This is not rocket science; it is allowing bulk purchasing of prescription drugs to try and get a better price, said David Sloane, AARP director of government affairs.
A spokeswoman for Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said that the legislation has the support of about 58 senatorsjust shy of the 60 that would be needed to pass the bill and prevent a filibuster. -- by Matthew DoBias