MEMO: One Month After Trump Announced Drug Plan, Costs Continue To Soar


TO: Interested Parties

FROM: DNC War Room

DATE: June 11, 2018

RE: One Month After Trump Announced Drug Plan, Costs Continue To Soar




It’s been a month since Donald Trump announced his drug plan, where he promised to stand up to the pharmaceutical industry and rein in the costs of prescription drugs.    


Rather than take real action to improve the economic well-being of millions of Americans who struggle with skyrocketing prescription drug costs, Trump’s plan has done little to lower drug costs and, in fact, could actually make them more expensive.


Pharmaceutical corporations have also won big from other Trump policies, including the Trump tax.  Pharmaceutical companies received a disportionately large giveaway, with many companies receiving billion-dollar breaks.  Unsurprisingly, so far this money has been passed along to their wealthy shareholders instead of used to lower drug prices.


This is what Americans have come to expect from Trump — an administration that puts corporate special interests first.  While Trump has shown where his loyalties lie, Democrats will stand up to corporate greed, and continue to fight to lower prescription drug costs and restore economic fairness for all Americans.


Americans Continue To Struggle With Rising Drug Costs


One month after Trump unveiled his drug pricing plan, Americans are still suffering the consequences of the administration’s inaction. Here’s some of what they are saying about rising drug prices:




  • “If we don’t get it, what are our options? If we don’t get our medicine, they might as well just dig a hole and walk us off in it.” – Arkansas resident Bobby Nunnery



  • “There are a lot of seniors out there that are deciding, 'should I take my drugs, or should I eat?' And that's not right.” – Buffalo resident Jack Lafferty



Trump’s Drug Plan Won’t Lower Drug Prices:

Trump’s drug plan does little to lower the price of prescription drugs, and could actually make them more expensive for millions of Americans. In fact, in the month since Trump unveiled his plan, prices have continued to soar.


  • Two weeks after Trump unveiled his plan to lower drug prices, two cancer drugs got a $1,000-per-month price hike, in addition to dozens of other price increases.



  • None of the policies in Trump’s budget would tackle the biggest driver of high prices by preventing drugmakers from setting whatever price they want.


  • Trump’s Medicare Part D proposal could lead to around 4.5 million Medicare beneficiaries paying about $1,000 more for their prescription drugs.


Drug Companies Won Big From The Trump Tax:


Pharmaceutical companies received a disportionately large giveaway from the Trump tax, and are using it to pass along to their wealthy shareholders rather than lower drug prices.


  • Pfizer alone received a massive $11 billion boost from the Trump tax.


  • The biggest pharmaceutical companies announced more than $50 billion in stock buybacks after the Trump tax, but made no plans to lower drug prices and have even cut back on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s research.


Trump Broke His Promises And Sold Out To Drug Companies:


Trump’s plan breaks his promises and, according to himself, shows he’s sold out to the drug companies.



  • Trump previously said the only reason the government didn’t negotiate Medicare drug prices was because all of the politicians were in the pockets of the drug companies.


  • In a break from one of his major campaign promises, Trump did not call for Medicare to negotiate lower prices with drug manufacturers.


  • Despite Trump’s campaign promise to save the United States $300 billion per year on prescription drugs, drug prices have soared under Trump’s watch.


  • Trump promised to stand up to the pharmaceutical industry, but during his first year in office the pharmaceutical industry significantly increased its federal lobbying.


Trump Filled His Administration With Pharmaceutical Insiders:


Trump filled his administration with industry insiders, and his personal lawyer accepted over $1 million from a drug maker — it’s no wonder Trump’s plan is a big win for drug companies.


  • Trump’s personal lawyer received $1.2 million from a drug maker, after he promised them access to Trump and administration officials in charge of crafting health policy.


  • Trump’s HHS secretary spent most of the past decade inside the drug industry, one of the key sectors he is supposed to regulate, and led a company that boosted prescription drug prices.


  • Trump’s HHS secretary surrounded himself with pharmaceutical company insiders, even tapping a former pharma executive to run the agency’s drug pricing reform efforts.


  • The official in charge of much of Trump’s drug price plan is an ex-top pharma lobbyist, who never received an ethics waiver when he joined the administration.