We would like to tip our hats to the folks over at Progress Iowa for bringing these stories to our attention. This is what watchdog groups are supposed to do.
As many may recall our current governor accepted airplane rides from donors, including a flight to Iowa State’s Liberty Bowl game in 2017.
A complaint concerning one of the flights which Reynolds took was dismissed Wednesday by the Iowa Court of Appeals.
From Matt Sinovic at Progress Iowa:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Progress Iowa Congratulates Gov. Reynolds On Accepting Legal Bribe
(DES MOINES, IOWA, September 11) — Progress Iowa responded to the Iowa Court of Appeals today upholding the dismissal of a complaint that Gov. Reynolds did not properly value a private flight that she took in 2017. Reynolds has flown on private jets owned by executives who do business with the state of Iowa, calling into question whether they were buying influence.
Statement from Progress Iowa executive director Matt Sinovic:
“The Governor has figured out a way to let companies who do business with the state pay for her travel, flying her on private jets to whatever event she chooses. It may technically be legal, but Iowans expect better from our elected officials. It’s no surprise that corporate CEOs are willing to buy her influence, but it should be disturbing to every Iowan that she’s willing to accept.”
“We offer our most insincere congratulations to the Governor for finding a loophole for legalized bribery, and offer our hope that next time she pay her own way instead of flying the corporate skies.” (bolding mine – ed)
Progress Iowa is a multi-issue progressive advocacy organization with a network of more than 75,000 progressives. Year-round, Progress Iowa advocates for a stronger middle class, first-class public education, and fairness for all Iowans under the law.
Dismissal of complaint over Gov. Reynolds’ family flight upheld by appeals court
Earlier in the week Progress Iowa reminded us that Democrats are moving on addressing skyrocketing drug prices:
For Immediate Release: September 10, 2019
Contact: Matt Sinovic, (515) 423-0133
Speaker Pelosi, House Democrats Set to Unveil Historic Legislation To Lower Drug Prices While Trump And Congressional Republicans Continue Defending Status Quo And Protecting Big Pharma
Following reports of the sweeping legislation set to be unveiled by Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats to drastically lower prescription drug costs and hold insurance companies accountable, Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse released the following statement:
“The landmark legislation Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats have crafted is the most sweeping and comprehensive reform of prescription drug prices in modern history. By lifting the ban on Medicare negotiations for lower drug prices and introducing the strongest-yet measures to hold big pharma accountable for the rigged system they’ve created, this plan would take on the skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs. Too many families are struggling to afford either rent or pills, but this plan would take on the drug companies and reduce drug prices for every American – those on Medicare and those who are not. President Trump and Republicans in Congress continue to be relentless defenders of the status quo – protectors of drug and insurance company profits. Republicans gave new, record-breaking tax breaks to the biggest drug companies and will now almost certainly try to block Medicare negotiations to lower prices for the American people.
“With this legislation, it’s clear that Speaker Pelosi and Democrats are taking seriously their commitment to ending the rigged system that keeps prices high, and their responsibility to ensure that no American goes broke trying to afford their prescriptions or access the care they need.”
Drug Prices Are Surging Under Trump
Drug Prices In 2019 Surged Compared To The Year Before. With Hikes At 5 Times Inflation — “More Than 3,400 Drugs Have Boosted Their Prices In The First Six Months Of 2019.”
“Price hikes on prescription drugs are surging in 2019, despite vows from the Trump administration to rein in pharmaceutical costs. So far in 2019, more than 3,400 drugs have boosted their prices, a 17% increase compared with the roughly 2,900 drug price increases at the same time in 2018, according to a new analysis by Rx Savings Solutions, a consultant to health plans and employers. The average price hike for those 3,400 drugs stands at 10.5%, or about 5 times the rate of inflation, the study found.” [CBS News, 7/1/19]
AARP Analysis Found Specialty Drug Prices Have Grown More Than Three Times Faster Than Inflation.
“The prices of widely used specialty prescription drugs grew more than three times faster than general inflation in 2017…The new report found that the average annual price for a single specialty drug used on a chronic basis is now nearly $79,000, compared to $27,824 in 2006.” [AARP, 6/25/19]
Insulin Costs Have Tripled Over The Past Decade.
Despite Tough Rhetoric, Trump And His Republican Allies Continue To Block Meaningful Reform.
Trump And His Republican Allies Continue To Block Medicare Negotiation For Lower Drug Prices.
Even though 86 percent of Americans support allowing the federal government to negotiate drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries, Republicans refuse to allow Medicare to negotiate. A 2018 Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Democratic Committee report found that Medicare Part D could save $2.8 billion in a single year if it were allowed to negotiate drug prices. Although it would decrease both federal spending and beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs, a policy allowing the federal government to negotiate drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries was recently blocked by Senate Republicans.
For more on Trump’s broken promises on drug pricing, click here.