WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nexstar) — Two Texans are leading efforts in Congress to lower prescription drug prices.
Republican Senator John Cornyn and Democratic Congressman Lloyd Doggett have both introduced bills to hold big drug companies accountable and make sure drug prices are affordable.
Doggett says many Americans can’t afford to pay for their prescription medicine — he’s leading the effort in the House to lower the cost of prescription drugs.
“I really see this as a matter of life and death,” said Doggett.
His bill would hold the big drug companies accountable by giving the federal government the power to negotiate prices with drug makers.
Across the Capitol, Cornyn is also fighting for affordable medicine.
He says his bill would make it harder for big drug companies to extend their patents of expensive name brand drugs and avoid generic competition.
“Our goal is to lower out of pocket costs with rising deductables and copays,” Cornyn said.
After six months of negotiations, Cornyn’s bill cleared the Senate Finance Committee and is now heading to the floor for a vote, but Doggett says the House is taking much longer.
Doggett says the hold up is House leadership.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she is working on her own bill, but Doggett says if it doesn’t do enough to crack down on big drug companies, he won’t support it.