Thursday :: Jun 17, 2004

Rethinking Prescription Drug Cards


by Mary

Republicans are unhappy about the senior reaction to the prescription drug cards that were supposed to move seniors into the Republican camp. Instead of gratitude for the program, seniors are staying away from the card in droves. Bush blames the problem on "misinformation" and Republicans have launched a PR blitz to convince seniors that it really is a good deal.

In response, the Bush administration launched a controversial ad campaign which included a "fake" reporter praising the new law. The ad has drawn criticism of politicking with public funds. More recently, House Republicans set up "town meetings" in Democratic districts to tout the law's benefits.

Some Republicans realize that the law is badly flawed and have joined with Democrats in proposing fixes to the problems with the law. Their proposals include ideas such as simplifying the choosing a card, legalizing the importation of drugs from Canada and allowing the Government to negotiate rates with the drug industry. Yet, I suspect the likeihood of these reforms happening is low because it would hurt the special relationship the Repubs have with Big Pharm.

Mary :: 7:37 AM :: Comments (20) :: Digg It!