Sep 19, 2008
Career Pol Paulsen Rx: Let Seniors Pay More for their Medicine
Masking his own record, Out of touch with Seniors, in Bed with Special Interests
State Representative Erik Paulsen's record of protecting special interests at the expense of middle class Minnesotans was again highlighted in a debate Tuesday hosted by the AARP when he said he would not support allowing Medicare to negotiate for cheaper prescription drug costs because it "wouldn't have any savings." A January 2007 Families USA report shows that seniors on Medicare Part D were paying at least 58 percent more for their prescriptions than veterans covered by the Veterans Administration which does allow for negotiations.
After having accepted nearly $14,000 in pharmaceutical industry campaign contributions and voting against a bill that would have reduced prescription drug costs for all Minnesotans, it's clear that Erik Paulen's priority is protecting drug companies profits, not fighting to give health care to Minnesotans. Once again, Paulsen is showing that he is too extreme to follow in the footsteps of moderate Congressman Jim Ramstad.
"Erik Paulsen's scheme to make more money for the Big Pharma companies while seniors struggle to afford their prescriptions is grossly out of touch, and all too consistent with his support for special interests over Minnesotas' seniors," said Carrie James, regional press secretary at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. "With a weakened economy and millions of Americans concerned about job security, retirement savings and skyrocketing health care and gas prices, the last thing Minnesotans need is Erik Paulsen's expensive plan on prescription drugs."
Erik Paulsen on Big Pharma
- In the Minnesota State House Paulsen voted against a bill that would have lowered Rx Drug costs for all Minnesotans. [Johnson Amendment, H.J. p. 4367, 5/10/01]
- Paulsen's campaign for Congress has accepted nearly $14,000 from Pharmaceutical industry [Opensecrets.org]
- Major pharmaceutical companies are enjoying increased profit margins - Abbott Laboratories' profits are up 110% since 2006, Wyeth up 10%, Bristol Myers Squibb is up 36% - all the while the cost of prescription drugs is on the rise. [Fortune Magazine, 5/5/08; Drug costs rise as economy slides, USA Today, 4/3/08]
- Families USA released a report showing that seniors on Medicare Part D were paying at least 58% more for their prescriptions than veterans covered under the Veterans Administration. [Families USA, January 2007]