Bernie Sanders: Democrats don't have the guts to fight pharma

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (I) on Thursday criticized 13 Senate Democrats for voting against a measure he proposed to control drug costs, saying they lacked the "guts" to stand up to the drug industry, reports USA Today.

The measure, proposed by Sen. Sanders and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), would have allowed drug distributors and pharmacists to import cheaper medications from Canada and other countries, according to the report. It was one of several proposed amendments to a 2017 budget resolution the Senate passed in its effort to repeal the ACA.

While 12 Republicans voted in favor of the measure, it failed to pass in a 52-46 vote Wednesday.

"The Democratic Party has got to make it very clear that they are prepared to stand up to powerful special interests like the pharmaceutical industry and like Wall Street, and they're not going to win elections and they're not going to be doing the right thing for the American people unless they have the guts to do that," said Sen. Sanders, according to USA Today. "That 13 Democrats did not is disappointing. I absolutely hope that in the coming weeks and months you're going to see many of them develop the courage to stand up to pharma."

Some senators cited safety concerns as the main reason they voted against Sen. Sanders' measure to import cheaper drugs. Sen. Sanders plans to personally speak with each senator who opposed the measure to try to change their minds, according to the report.

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