"Much more needs to be done" to lower prescription drug prices: Sen. Sanders

'Sen. Bernie Sanders on Tuesday called for additional action to curb prescription drug costs in the United States after the Biden administration unveiled its list of the first 10 medications that will be subject to direct price negotiations with Medicare. [See our blog post yesterday]

'Sanders (I-Vt.), the chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, welcomed the administration's move as "an important step forward in taking on the greed of the pharmaceutical industry and their 1,800 paid lobbyists in Washington, D.C."

'But "much more has to be done to protect the American people," the senator added, noting that the median annual price of medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration last year was over $222,000.

' "Bottom line: We should not be paying any more for prescription drugs than other countries around the world," said Sanders. "I look forward to working with the president and my colleagues to make that happen." '

Jake Johnson of Common Dreams outlines Sanders's further planned actions.

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Ten drugs lead list of Rxs subject to negotiation with Medicare and medicaid

Progressive Maryland joins those cheering the announcement of the first ten (of many more, we hope) high-priced drugs that will cost us less because Medicare and medicaid will now be able to negotiate their prices.

Imagine that -- the US government's critical health care provision will gain the right that corporations have always had -- to drive the best bargain they can get, instead of taking the prices Big Pharma gives them. As we see below, top treatments for some of our most common conditions like heart disease, diabetes, cancer and autoimmune diseases will get within reach.

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Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, July 28, 2023

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As we transition into a new month this week, with Labor Day just around the corner, let's shift our focus to an issue that remains critical in our society: worker's rights. In a rapidly changing economy, it's more crucial than ever to advocate for and strengthen labor laws. Ensuring fair wages, safe working conditions, and protection against exploitation are key components of building a just society.

 

As Black August also draws to a close, we honor the rich history it represents ‚Äď a time to commemorate the struggles and sacrifices of Black activists who fought for justice and equality.¬†

 

Read on for the latest events, updates on our initiatives, and opportunities to get involved!



 

 

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State schools' spending, gas tax revenue in the EV era, and other money issues are News You Can Use

News_You_Can_Use_graphic_(2).pngIt's getting and spending, as usual, on the top of the headlines. Maryland needs more money for schools but boards are spending it in sometimes mysterious ways. Meanwhile how do we fix the state's roads when (we hope, soon) E-vehicles dominate the state's traffic pattern and gas tax revenues plummet?  Plus, Larry Hogan's toll lane plans survive in reduced form and odd, distant whiffs raise new interest in our air quality. It's News You Can Use, even if it's not always cheerful.



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Organizational Letter to Board of Election Supervisors

Progressive Maryland and the undersigned organizations have sent a letter to the Chairman of the Board of Election Supervisors to protest the unconstitutional acts targeting City Council Member Martin Mitchell, candidate for Laurel Mayor. 

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Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, August 21, 2023

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Happy Monday! We are one month away from the Progressive Maryland Annual Gala so if you haven’t yet secured your spot for this event, make sure to grab a ticket before they sell out! This will be an evening full of food and fun that you won’t want to miss. The event features Maryland’s very own Rep. Jamie Raskin, a champion for Democracy! See you in a month, on Thursday, September 21st from 4-8pm at a beautiful Annapolis waterfront location. 

 

Be sure to check out the latest events on our calendar and stay informed about our ongoing task force initiatives, ways to get involved, and news you can use!

 

In Solidarity,

The Progressive Maryland Team

 

PS - Don't forget to tune into our radio show, The Progress Report, live on air Fridays from 5-6pm ET on WPFW 89.3 PM or online at wpfwfm.org/radio.



 

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News You Can Use: MD Budget may be bigger scramble than was hoped

NUCU_logo_new.pngIt appears that for the eight years of Larry Hogan, building more roads to create more access to more real estate development was seen as the key to prosperity in Maryland.

Meanwhile, neighbor states like New Jersey and Pennsylvania were taking different steps, and Gov. Wes Moore told this weekend's gathering of the Maryland Association of Counties that economic data shows Maryland residents are losing earning power compared to our neighbors, and that was hampering economic progress he hopes to see in our state. So, tough times ahead.

This and more news you can use in this week's roundup, including the return of People's Action's congressional watchdog with, well, the usual dismal news about our fearless leaders on the Hill. Read it all here.



 

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MACo hears new climate commitment after eight years of coddling carbon

After eight years of Larry Hogan's indifference to issues of climate peril and environmental justice, some longtime advocates have taken on fresh challenges in the critical sectors of Maryland government that had been idle or out of action in the decarbonization struggle. Former Sen. Paul Pinsky and former House leader Del. Kumar Barve told members of the Maryland Association of Counties meeting in O.C. that the Maryland Energy Administration and the Public Service Commission might be on everyone's mind more than expected.

The Public Service Commission has a majority of new Gov. Wes Moore's appointees, including Barve, and Pinsky's Maryland Energy Administration some significant federal money to help decarbonize Marylanders' everyday lives.

Read more here from Maryland Matters.

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Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, August 14,2023

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Happy Monday! We're thrilled to kick off this week's memo by highlighting our latest endorsements for municipal races in the upcoming election. Our endorsed candidates are Iyamide House for Bowie City Council (District 3), Izola Shaw for Rockville City Council, and Martin Mitchell for Laurel Mayor These three remarkable community leaders embody the values we hold dear: progress, inclusivity, and a commitment to strengthening our communities. Read more about why we chose to support their campaigns in our official endorsement announcement.

 

Be sure to check out the latest events on our calendar, including the Vegan SoulFest we are participating in this weekend, and stay informed about our ongoing task force initiatives, ways to get involved, and news you can use!

 



 

 

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While Congress is at bay, the states will play -- in Indianapolis

News_You_Can_Use_graphic_(2).pngCongress is out this week, though individual members are no doubt committing significant mischief back in their districts. We'll have to see how that goes down. But while the feds are idle (except Joe Biden, having a Camp David summit with Japanese and South Korean leaders this week) the states are busy. The National Conference of State Legislatures is meeting for their annual talkfest in Indianapolis.

All that federal money is running out now, so suddenly states are typically more interested in regulating (low cost) than in appropriating (high price tag); therefore they will be happy to pay attention to Route Fifty's focus on what to do about Artificial Intelligence, which we have all learned to call AI for short. If, instead, they have a look at the Pew Center's report on what they might spend some money on, they'll see a big take on tax policy justice (watch Maryland legislators looking carefully at their shoes) and other good ideas.

We'll check out what's going on in Maryland first, but pay attention to what other states are doing and the problems they are solving (or not solving). Those are issues that will probably come home to roost in our own state eventually. That's why we call this News You Can Use.

First, though, about Maryland...



 

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