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The Trump administration may agree to China's demand that biologics receive only 8 years of market exclusivity as part of a trade deal, a blow to the drug industry, Bloomberg scooped.

What's new: Top U.S. negotiators have told drug companies that China isn't budging from its position, and are pushing the industry to accept the deal.

Background: Biologics get 12 years of market exclusivity in the U.S., and the administration secured a 10-year agreement as part of the trade deal it reached with Mexico and Canada last year (which hasn't yet been approved by Congress).

Between the lines: Obviously, drug companies don't like this. The longer an exclusivity period a drugmaker has, the longer it can enjoy monopoly pricing before a competitor can come to market.

  • Some are frustrated by the administration's approach, Bloomberg reports.
  • Democrats have already criticized the 10-year protections included in the Mexico-Canada deal, saying they ensure higher drug prices in all three countries. If a trade deal with China includes only 8 years of protection, it could weaken the administration's position as it pushes Congress for approval.

Bonus: Bloomberg also had a great story yesterday on nonprofits that receive drug industry funding, and then push for pharma-friendly policies.

Go deeper: China wants its own pharma industry, but has a long way to go

Go deeper

26 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inhofe loudly sets Trump straight on defense bill

Sen. Jim Inhofe speaks with reporters in the Capitol last month. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Senator Jim Inhofe told President Trump today he'll likely fail to get two big wishes in pending defense spending legislation, bellowing into his cellphone: "This is the only chance to get our bill passed," a source who overheard part of their conversation tells Axios.

Why it matters: Republicans are ready to test whether Trump's threats of vetoing the bill, which has passed every year for more than half a century, are empty.

Conspiracy theories blow back on Trump's White House

Sidney Powell. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

President Trump has rarely met a conspiracy theory he doesn't like, but he and other Republicans now worry the wild tales told by lawyers Sidney Powell and Lin Wood may cost them in Georgia's Senate special elections.

Why it matters: The two are telling Georgians not to vote for Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler because of a bizarre, baseless and potentially self-defeating theory: It's not worth voting because the Chinese Communist Party has rigged the voting machines.

27 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Bolton lauds Barr for standing up to Trump

John Bolton. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

John Bolton says Attorney General Bill Barr has done more to undercut President Trump's baseless assertions about Democrats stealing the election than most Senate Republicans by saying publicly that the Justice Department has yet to see widespread fraud that could change the election's outcome.

What he's saying: “He stood up and did the right thing," Bolton said in a Wednesday phone interview.