The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) launched a seven-figure ad buy Monday looking to pressure congressional Republicans and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for their opposition to Democratic-led legislation that would seek to lower the cost of prescription drugs.
The ads are set to run on cable channels nationwide, as well as in a select group of local markets, including Las Vegas, where two Democratic incumbents — Rep. Susie Lee in District 3 and Rep. Steven Horsford in District 4 — are expected to face strong challenges from Republicans.
Using imagery of hospitals and pharmacies, the ad criticizes McConnell and Republicans for “[taking] millions from drug companies” before moving to block legislation that aims to lower drug prices and insurance premiums.
Republicans have long taken millions from the pharmaceutical industry, but so have their Democratic counterparts. An analysis by Kaiser Health News from October, 2018 shows just over 200 Republicans received more than $7 million from the industry, while 185 Democrats were given just under $5 million.
Industry spending is also widespread among state legislatures. That includes Nevada, where the state Democratic Party received $250,000 from industry lobbying group PhRMA.
Still, the Republican-controlled Senate has stalled on a bill from the House that would seek to lower drug prices in part by allowing Medicare to negotiate those prices. Since passing the full House in mid-December on a party-line vote, the bill has yet to be introduced in the Senate.
In Nevada — though lawmakers have sought to lower insulin prices through a pricing transparency law in 2017 — state officials have made little specific pricing data public in the years since, and have at times struggled to collect pricing data from nearly two-dozen companies.