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The push to make drug prices a campaign issue

Democratic lawmakers with a chart on drug prices
Democratic lawmkers hold a press conference regarding drug prices last year. Photo: Bill Clark / CQ Roll Call

Some Democratic-leaning advocates are working hard to keep drug pricing at the center of the political debate as we head toward this year’s midterms — and it may not be that hard of a sell.

The latest: New polling data from the advocacy group Patients For Affordable Drugs shows widespread support for more action on drug pricing — a popular campaign promise of President Trump’s, but one that hasn’t gotten a ton of traction yet in Washington.

  • 75% of those surveyed said Congress and Trump “need to do more” on drug prices; just under 10% said they’ve done enough.
  • Voters were split about evenly as to whether drug prices should be “a top priority” or “an important priority,” but few placed it any lower than that.

The big picture: This polling was done to help build support for the CREATES Act, a bill designed to make it easier for would-be generic competitors to obtain samples of brand-name drugs to use in their own development process. The bill has bipartisan support in the Senate, and backing from a bipartisan array of outside interest groups, too.