A local news outlet “incorrectly implied” that U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-MN-01) “is opposed to all plans to lower prescription drug prices,” the station admitted Wednesday.
ABC 6 News, an ABC affiliate for southern Minnesota and northern Iowa, ran a segment Wednesday that claimed Hagedorn will “vote against lowering the cost of prescription drugs.”
“Specifically, a bill making its way through the U.S. House giving Medicare the ability to negotiate with drug companies for lower prescription drug prices and reverse pricing on items such as insulin,” an anchor for the station added.
Hagedorn’s Democratic opponent Dan Feehan, who lost to the Republican in 2018, used the segment to suggest that Hagedorn “continues to accept money from Big Pharma,” while his constituents “are forced to make the choice between food and housing or prescription drugs.”
“That’s unacceptable. I won’t be beholden to Big Pharma because I won’t take a dime from them,” Feehan said on Twitter.
While, @JimHagedornMN continues to accept 💰from ‘Big Pharma,’ too many in #MN01 are forced to make the choice between food & housing or prescription drugs. That’s unacceptable. I won’t be beholden to ‘Big Pharma,’ b/c I won’t take a dime from them. pic.twitter.com/0UE0cSWYAP
— Dan Feehan (@danielfeehan) November 13, 2019
Shortly after the segment aired, the station admitted in an update that it “incorrectly implied” Hagedorn was opposed to all plans to lower the costs of prescription drugs.
“Our story was based on information from a third-party source that was not properly vetted,” the outlet added, but Feehan still has the inaccurate segment posted on his Twitter page.
Hagedorn has cosponsored three House bills to reform the prescription drug system and drive down costs during his first term in Congress, he said in a statement to ABC 6 News.
“I champion several measures to make prescription drugs more affordable and also continue the research and development of life-enhancing and life-saving drug therapies,” said Hagedorn. “These bills were passed out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, unanimously. Unfortunately, Speaker Pelosi added a partisan poison pill, an Obamacare bailout, and these measures lost Republican support.”
Hagedorn said he also favors “price transparency to spur consumer shopping, pharmacy benefit manager reform, and the award of bounties, where a panel of experts would determine the effectiveness of newly developed treatments for rare diseases and the federal government would help pay for the costs of developing the treatments and reduce the burden for patients.”
“While I fully support lowering the cost of prescription drugs, I do not support socialized medicine and letting federal politicians and bureaucrats pick winners and losers in the drug marketplace and stifle the innovation of new treatments and therapies that prolong and save lives,” Hagedorn concluded.
Preya Samsundar, a regional spokesperson for the Republican National Committee, said on Friday that “it’s been two days since this story was retracted by ABC 6 News and Dan Feehan still hasn’t taken this false attack down.”
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