Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Monday night that he is going to bring a $35 cap on patients’ insulin costs back up for a vote this fall after Republicans blocked it over the weekend.
“They blocked a $35 price for insulin for non-Medicare people,” Schumer said on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.” “We’re going to come back and make them vote on that again.”
The move can help put pressure on Republicans and highlight what Democrats view as a winning issue ahead of November’s midterm elections.
Democrats hammered Republicans for voting against the $35 cap over the weekend.
That vote came up in the context of overruling the parliamentarian’s decision that applying the $35 cap to people with private health insurance violated the complicated Senate rules Democrats were using to bypass a GOP filibuster.
Seven Republicans still voted with all 50 Democrats, three short of the 60 votes needed, and it is possible more Republicans would support it if it came up as a standalone measure, not in the context of a Senate rules vote.
“We got all 50 Democrats,” Schumer said in a separate interview Monday on NPR. “We did get seven Republicans. We’re going to bring that back in the fall, because there’s going to be huge heat on Republicans.”
Schumer did not specify whether he would bring the $35 cap up by itself or as part of a larger, bipartisan insulin measure from Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), which had previously faced difficulties gaining enough GOP support.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) suggested Monday he would support a $35 cap if it came up again.
“Vote on the cap was not [about] insulin It was [about] Dems ignoring budget rules,” he tweeted. “Dear colleagues join me in supporting the Collins-Shaheen bill to cap insulin at $35 & enact [pharmacy benefit manager] reforms in bipartisan way.”