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Seven pharmaceutical CEOs testify in front of the Senate Finance Committee. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Seven of the pharmaceutical industry's top CEOs came to Capitol Hill yesterday, spent a few hours pointing the finger at pharmacy benefit managers, and went home largely unscathed.

Between the lines: The pharma CEOs were able to stick to their plan. No one on the Finance Committee backed any of them into a corner, or knocked them very far off their talking points, or made them commit to anything they might regret. Their stocks were unaffected.

  • Most notably, the CEOs praised the Trump administration's plan to eliminate PBM rebates in Medicare. But they didn't commit to lowering their list prices as a result; some suggested that might only happen if Congress also eliminates rebates in commercial insurance.

Yes, but: Pharma isn't out of the woods. The headwinds it faced before the hearing — the general political climate, the nascent bipartisan interest in patent reform, and an unpredictable administration — are all still there. And this isn't the end of congressional oversight on drug prices.

My thought bubble: The committee's hearing may not have been industry's dream. In pharma's ideal world, it wouldn't have happened at all. But it was awfully close to the next-best thing.

Go deeper: Pharma's grip on the health care economy

Go deeper

Arizona Judge: Adding mask mandates ban to budget bill is unconstitutional

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) Photo: Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

An Arizona judge ruled Monday that the state's ban on mask mandates in schools, and other measures put into the state budget by Republicans, are unconstitutional, the Arizona Republic reports.

Why it matters: The sweeping ruling voids a ban on vaccine requirements for public universities, community colleges and local governments, and strikes down some non-COVID-related measures like a ban on teaching critical race theory in classrooms and anti-fraud measures for ballots.

Pfizer testing oral pill for prevention of COVID

Photo: Soumyabrata Roy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Pfizer announced Monday that it is testing an oral antiviral drug that would help prevent COVID-19.

Why it matters: This drug is one of several antiviral pills that could have a massive impact on coronavirus treatment since not everyone will get a vaccine, and it may take years to fully vaccinate people in certain countries, per Axios' Alison Snyder.

Scoop: Dems' sneaky sabotage

Virginia gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

A group tied to prominent Democratic strategists is posing as a conservative outfit to try to drive a wedge between the Republican candidate for Virginia governor and his core voters, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: The state's gubernatorial race is expected to be tight and could be a national bellwether. As Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin's campaign hypes improving poll numbers, Democrats are trying to chip away at his support in GOP strongholds.