health-care

Spending Splurge
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 78

A little girl and a man look through the windows of the Capitol dome miniature model in the Capitol Visitors Center Monday afternoon Sept. 10, 2018. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

House and Senate lawmakers made a deal to give the Pentagon a huge spending boost and defy President Donald Trump's call to cut various health, education and labor programs. CQ Defense reporter John M. Donnelly and Health reporter Andrew Siddons unpack the mammoth spending package now making its way through Congress.

Show Notes:

Cramer Counters Health Care Attacks With New Ad
North Dakota Republican is on defense in Senate race over pre-existing conditions

Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., is challenging Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., in a high-profile Senate race. Here, the two attend an event with National Guardsmen in Bismarck, N.D., in August. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

North Dakota Rep. Kevin Cramer is taking to the airwaves to combat Democratic ads that spotlight the Republican Senate candidate’s health care positions.

The new Cramer ad features images of three Democratic spots — two of them from outside Democratic groups and one from Democratic incumbent Heidi Hetikamp’s campaign. Cramer has been calling on Heitkamp to take down her own campaign’s ad, saying she is citing inaccurate information about how his health care votes would have affected people with pre-existing conditions.

FDA Threatens to Stop Sales of Flavored E-Cigarettes
Agency gives companies 60 days to present strategy to curb youth use

The FDA wants e-cigarette manufacturers to take steps to curb youth use or “face regulatory consequences.” (Matt Cardy/Getty Images file photo)

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday announced it may force e-cigarette manufacturers to stop selling flavored products, citing what Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called an “epidemic” of youth use.

Five companies, including JUUL Labs, Inc., maker of the popular, USB-drive shaped device with nicotine flavors, will have 60 days to give the FDA a strategy on how they will curb youth use — “or face regulatory consequences,” Gottlieb said.

As Primaries End, Jayapal Launches Medicare For All PAC
Health care idea has not attracted universal support among party

Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., announced the formation of a Medicare for All PAC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

On the day of the final primary election of the midterm cycle, Washington Democratic Rep. Pramila Jayapal announced she was launching a PAC focused on helping candidates who support Medicare For All, an idea that divided Democratic candidates.

The PAC will support both candidates and initiatives promoting universal health care. The announcement did not specify an initial investments.

GOP Super PAC Ad Hits California’s Katie Porter on Health Care
CLF has reserved nearly $3 million in air time in 45th District

Democrat Katie Porter is challenging GOP Rep. Mimi Walters in California’s 45th District. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Congressional Leadership Fund is launching a new ad aimed at Democrat Katie Porter in California’s 45th District — this time targeting her on health care. 

Porter is challenging two-term Republican Rep. Mimi Walters in the Orange County district, which Hillary Clinton carried by 5 points in 2016. Democrats are hoping to repeat Clinton’s success in this part of Southern California, which has traditionally been a conservative stronghold. 

Liberal Health Care Group Launches Seven-Figure Campaign
Will target vulnerable Republicans in more than 20 districts

Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo., is one of the Republicans being targeted by a liberal advocacy group two months out from the midterms. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A liberal health care group is launching a seven-figure campaign targeting more than 20 congressional districts ahead of the midterm elections.

Health Care Voter announced the campaign on Thursday and said it will also release a 50-state voter guide for every candidate for federal office.

Ad War Over Drug Prices Goes One Step Forward, Two Questions Back
‘I undoubtedly will be sued,’ HHS chief Azar has predicted

Allies of the pharmaceutical industry, such as Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, have reservations about a plan to give HHS a green light on new regulations for drug price disclosure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 11:04 a.m. | A spending bill passed by the Senate last week includes $1 million for the Trump administration to craft new regulations forcing companies to include prices in prescription drug ads.

But there’s still the question of how that would work — and whether the Department of Health and Human Services has the legal authority to make drug companies disclose prices in TV, radio and other advertisements to consumers.

As Dems Campaign on Pre-Existing Conditions, 10 Republicans Move In
Tillis touts ‘common-sense’ solution, Murray calls it a ‘gimmick’

As the 2010 health care law weathers its latest legal challenge, Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., has introduced a bill aimed at pre-existing conditions. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Ten Senate Republicans on Friday released a bill meant to guarantee the protections for patients with pre-existing conditions included in the 2010 health care law.

The measure is a response to the latest legal challenge to the health law, which seeks to invalidate the law after Congress effectively ended the so-called “individual mandate” that requires most Americans to maintain health insurance coverage or pay a fine.

Coming Soon: A House Wellness Center for Employees
Omnibus spending bill allocated money to establish program

Coming to a House wellness program near you? The chief administrative officer is establishing a House wellness program as soon as this year. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A wellness program for House employees is ramping up, including a search for a full-time coordinator and plans for a “wellness center” storefront in the Capitol complex. 

“Having worked on the Hill for several decades, I know how rewarding it can be, but I also know how stressful it is and how it impacts you professionally and personally,” said House Chief Administrative Officer Philip G. Kiko.

Red-State Democrats Zero In on Opioid Epidemic
Issue could buoy vulnerable incumbents in West Virginia, Missouri

Sens. Claire McCaskill and Joe Manchin III are two vulnerable Democrats looking to highlight their work on opioids. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Vulnerable red-state Democrats are highlighting their work to address the opioid crisis in an effort to hold on to their congressional seats, even as it remains unclear whether the Senate will take key action before the midterm elections.

While the opioid epidemic is a priority for much of Congress, candidates in especially hard-hit states, such as West Virginia, have made it a core issue in their re-election bids.