Good morning ... People are apparently hoarding some of the world’s worst candy. Hope you did something more rational with your weekend.
Photo: Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Both the Senate and the House are pushing forward this week on their respective opioid legislation.
What’s next: Leaders in both chambers support passing opioid legislation this year, and so far Congress is cruising smoothly towards doing so.
The health care industry is inching closer to employing 16 million people, keeping it ahead of the retail and manufacturing industries as the country's largest source of jobs. In the 18 months since President Trump was elected, health care companies have added an average of 24,000 jobs per month.
The bottom line: Everyone gets sick and dies, making health care a mostly recession-proof industry. But rising health care employment isn’t necessarily good for the economy: more jobs inevitably leads to higher spending.
Ronny Jackson, the White House doctor and Trump's pick to be the next Veterans Affairs secretary, defended his management experience over the weekend in an interview with the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.
Key quote: Here's how Jackson responded to those questions with the Avalanche-Journal:
“I’ve been in leadership school for 23 years now. ... And I’ve been able to rise to the level of an admiral, a flag officer in the Navy. I didn’t just stumble into that. So I’ve gotten a lot of leadership background, I’ve got a lot of leadership experience as a Navy officer, and I’ve got a lot of day-to-day leadership experience,” he said. “You know, I’m not just an officer in the Navy; I’m an emergency medicine physician in the military. I’ve been confronted on a day-to-day basis with life and death decisions."
“I think I’ve got what it takes, and you know, I don’t buy into that argument at all.”
A federal judge last week dealt the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association an early but potentially significant setback in litigation that accuses Blues' plans of anti-competitive practices.
Why it matters: Blues' plans are the largest players in many state insurance markets — and the only insurer in some parts of the Affordable Care Act's markets.