Republicans ran a successful challenge to remove some of Democrats’ climate and health care legislation that would have capped the price of insulin to cap insulin prices to $35.
Democrats hoped to include a cap on the price of insulin in their proposed legislation called The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Along with provisions to curb climate change, Democrats hoped to use the legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs.
But Senate MP Elizabeth MacDonough issued guidelines stating that the price cap was not in line with budget alignment rules, which allow the Senate to pass legislation by a simple majority. Democrats only have 50 Senate seats and therefore wanted to avoid a Republican filibuster for their legislation.
In turn, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, the Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, raised a point of order on the insulin aspect, saying it violates the Congressional Budget Act, which regulates what can be included in an appeasement bill. Hospitalized. This required it to get 60 votes to remain in the bill.
But seven Republicans voted to keep the provision in Democrat legislation, three fewer than it took to keep the provision, along with every Democrat. Senators Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Josh Hawley of Missouri, Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi, John Kennedy of Louisiana, Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan of Alaska all joined the Democrats.
Democratic Senator Patty Murray, the chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee, urged Republicans to keep it in the legislation.
“We have an opportunity here to make a difference and permanently limit insulin to $35 a month,” she said. “It will save money, it will save lives. This shouldn’t be a difficult vote to cast.”
Georgia Senator Raphael Warnock, the lead sponsor of the insulin cap, told reporters before the vote that the Senate, not the MP, was to blame.
“This is up to the Senate tonight. It’s not up to the MP, no matter what she thinks about it,” he said Saturday night before the vote on amendments began.
The vote to drop the amendment came at the end of a “vote-a-rama,” which takes place during budget voting when senators vote on a flurry of amendments, typically taking ten minutes each. But the vote for the Inflation Reduction Act was much slower because many senators did not sit at their desks.
Democrats, for the most part, presented a united front, opposing even legislation they supported as a means of holding their caucus together and not alienating any member.
The move also comes after the Senate MP issued guidelines stating that some of the legislation that would require drug companies to cut Medicare if it pushed drug prices above inflation did not comply with budget alignment rules. .