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Is PhRMA Afraid of the Progressive Block?

PhRMA is now running ads in Connecticut targeting Joe Lieberman to support the current Senate bill (via Ben Smith at Politico).

Obviously, PhRMA wants the Senate bill to pass because it contains so many sweetheart deals for the drug industry. Even though PhRMA would like to see the public option eliminated, it is a low-level priority compared with maintaining all the other great giveaways for their industry in this bill .

I suspect if PhRMA were 100% confident Joe Lieberman could successfully remove the public option and still ensure the rest of the bill would pass intact, they would be supporting his efforts. The fact that PhRMA is asking Lieberman not to fight indicates to me that they actually fear the possibility that the progressive block might kill the current bill because if it lacks a public option. Whether health care reform dies completely or is forced to go through reconciliation, both would be equally bad news for PhRMA. This is the first indication I have seen that an industry player fears a possible revolt on the left and is starting to take the progressive block seriously.

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Is PhRMA Afraid Of The Progressive Block?

PhRMA is now running ads in Connecticut targeting Joe Lieberman to support the current Senate bill (via Ben Smith at Politico).

Obviously, PhRMA wants the Senate bill to pass because it contains so many sweetheart deals for the drug industry. Even though PhRMA would like to see the public option eliminated, it is a low-level priority compared with maintaining all the other great giveaways for their industry in this bill .

I suspect if PhRMA were 100% confident Joe Lieberman could successfully remove the public option and still ensure the rest of the bill would pass intact, they would be supporting his efforts. The fact that PhRMA is asking Lieberman not to fight indicates to me that they actually fear the possibility that the progressive block might kill the current bill because if it lacks a public option. Whether health care reform dies completely or is forced to go through reconciliation, both would be equally bad news for PhRMA. This is the first indication I have seen that an industry player fears a possible revolt on the left and is starting to take the progressive block seriously.

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at http://pendinghorizon.com