News from Representative DeGette

       

Dear Friend,

It’s hard to believe that today marks 100 days since Democrats took back control of the U.S. House of Representatives. Since then, we have passed several pieces of legislation to clean up Washington and put the people’s interests ahead of the special interests. We’ve voted for bills that would enact commonsense gun control, deliver campaign finance reform, restore net neutrality, and ensure equal pay for equal work. And we’re working to advance legislation to lower health care costs and protect our environment.

As chair of the Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations panel, I convened our second hearing in as many weeks on the skyrocketing cost of insulin. This week’s hearing was the first time that we had executives from all three U.S. manufactures of insulin and the nation’s three largest pharmacy benefit managers all together at one table to testify jointly before Congress.

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I believe the insulin pricing issue is a microcosm of what’s going on throughout the prescription drug area. Even though this life-saving drug has been around for nearly one hundred years, it has more than doubled in price over the last decade, making it unaffordable to millions of Americans who need it to live. The hearings we held these past two weeks were designed to help us understand what’s going on and what Congress can do to help bring down the cost of this drug.

As the New York Times wrote, this week’s hearing was “one of several indications that Congress was serious about trying to address the cries of distress from constituents unable to afford the medicines they need.” I can promise you that we won’t be satisfied until all Americans can afford insulin. 

After the hearing, I spoke with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes about what’s next in our ongoing investigation and how we plan on taking action to lower the cost of this drug.  

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In addition to combating the rising cost of insulin, I’ve also been working to protect our environment. On Thursday, I and others launched an investigation into whether two Trump political appointees at EPA undermined clean air regulations to benefit former industry clients. If it turns out they were undermining our nation’s environmental laws to help their former clients, they will be held accountable.

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I’m afraid, however, that the problems at the EPA go beyond just these two high-ranking officials. This week, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler testified in front of our full Energy and Commerce Committee. While he was there, I pressed him on why his agency isn’t doing more to promote environmental justice for our neighbors right here in the Denver-area and across the U.S., and why the EPA has failed to combat toxic chemicals that threaten our health and well-being. I’ll continue to seek answers on these issues.

As a reminder, TOMORROW from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., I will be holding a community forum to provide you, and everyone else in our district, an update on some of the most pressing issues facing our nation - and to hear directly from you. If you’re available, I hope you will join us for this important event.

For more information or to RSVP, please click here today (as space is limited).

As always, thanks for your support. And please remember, you can always visit my website at DeGette.house.gov where you can read my positions on issues and learn about the different ways my staff can assist you. While you’re there, be sure to visit the “Contact” page and send me an email about what matters most to you and your family. And please don’t hesitate to share this email with your friends, family, and neighbors so that they too can be a part of this important dialogue.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Sincerely,

Diana DeGette
Member of Congress

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