David Brooks offers grades on the first 100 hours of the new congress, including this:
Prescription drugs: D. While they were the opposition, Democrats fulminated that the Republicans were so deep in the pockets of Big Pharma that they wouldn’t even let the government negotiate lower drug prices. But governing is harder than kvetching, and the Congressional Budget Office has concluded that the Democratic plan would have a negligible effect on prices for the elderly.
The plan allows the government to negotiate, but doesn’t take the politically difficult step of giving it any leverage to actually lower prices. A symbolic gesture.
I agree with that. But am I to infer from this that Brooks would favor a toothier measure? The de facto price controls the right’s economists have warned us about? I sort of doubt it, but I’d be interested to know.