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: Biden to sign executive order aiming for lower drug costs, as inflation persists before midterm elections

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President Joe Biden on Friday is slated to sign an executive order related to lowering the cost of prescription drugs, as he continues to try to address high inflation with the midterm elections just three and half weeks away.

His action comes as he visits California’s Orange County, where several U.S. House races are considered competitive, according to Cook Political Report, including one featuring prominent Democratic Rep. Katie Porter.

Related: Katie Porter’s university housing deal draws scrutiny

And see: Katie Porter: High food prices hurt my family, too

The White House said in a statement that Biden’s latest executive order will direct the Department of Health and Human Services to “consider additional actions to further drive down prescription drug
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costs,” including by “leveraging the ‘Innovation Center’ at HHS, created by the Affordable Care Act, which has authority to test new ways of paying for Medicare services that improve the quality of care while lowering costs.” HHS will be given 90 days to submit plans about using that authority, according to the statement.

Biden is scheduled to give a speech at 6:10 p.m. Eastern at a community college in Irvine, Calif., about his efforts to lower costs, then he’s due to travel to Oregon, where the Democratic candidate for governor faces an unexpectedly tough race vs. a Republican and an independent opponent.

From MarketWatch’s archives (May 2022 ): As Biden fights inflation, economists warn his weapons for this battle look ‘extremely limited’

Republicans have seized on high inflation in their midterm campaigns, and they’re expected to take control of the House in the Nov. 8 midterm elections, with betting market PredictIt giving an 83% chance for that outcome. The GOP has a 52% chance of winning the U.S. Senate, according to PredictIt’s data.

See: Betting markets now see Republicans winning Senate in midterm elections, as GOP slightly favored for first time in 2 months

On Thursday, the latest reading for the consumer price index showed high inflation persisting, with so-called core CPI climbing to a new cycle peak. Stocks 
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dived early Thursday after the reading, but then finished sharply higher. The S&P 500
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was up nearly 1% for the week as of Thursday’s close, but still down 23% for the year.

: Ads are coming to Netflix in November with plan costing $6.99 a month

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