H.R. 4 Set for House Vote Tomorrow — President Vows Veto

The House is set to vote tomorrow tomorrow on H.R. 4, the bill that would require the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to negotiate lower Medicare Part D drug prices. Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office concluded that the bill will not lower Medicare Part D costs as also suggested by critics of the bill. (Finally the Washington Post and the New York Times have recognized that the VA relies on statutorily mandated pricing, rather than negotiations for its discounts and that the VA healthcare system is not analogous to Medicare).

Today, HHS Secretary Leavitt explained in the Washington Post why he opposes the bill, and later the President announced that he will veto the bill if Congress enacts it. (A similar bill, S. 250, was introduced in the Senate today.) It is highly unlike that Congress could overturn that veto with the required 2/3s vote.