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Republicans block cap on millions of patients’ insulin costs in Senate inflation bill

Aug. 7, 2022 Updated Sun., Aug. 7, 2022 at 9:51 a.m.

A patient holds a vial of insulin during a news conference outside the Olde Walkersville Pharmacy on July 28, 2019, in Windsor, Ontario.  (Carlos Osorio/Associated Press)
A patient holds a vial of insulin during a news conference outside the Olde Walkersville Pharmacy on July 28, 2019, in Windsor, Ontario. (Carlos Osorio/Associated Press)
By Tony Romm and Evan Halper The Washington Post

WASHINGTON - Republican lawmakers on Sunday successfully stripped a $35 price cap on the cost of insulin for many patients from the ambitious legislative package Democrats are moving through Congress this weekend, invoking arcane Senate rules to jettison the measure.

The insulin cap is a long-running ambition of Democrats, who want it to apply to patients on Medicare and private insurance. Republicans left untouched the portion that applies to Medicare patients but stripped the insulin cap for other patients. Bipartisan talks on a broader insulin pricing bill faltered earlier this year.

The Senate parliamentarian ruled that Democrats’ cap, included in the Inflation Reduction Act, did not comply with the rules that allow them to advance a bill under the process known as reconciliation - a tactic that helps Democrats avert a GOP filibuster. That gave Republicans an opening to jettison it.

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