Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) on Thursday cornered the CEO of biotech firm Gilead Sciences about why his company charges nearly $2,000 for a drug that consumers in Australia can buy for just $8.
During a hearing of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Ocasio-Cortez asked Gilead CEO Daniel O’Day about his company’s decision to charge over 200 times more for HIV prevention pill Truvada than what people in other countries pay for the same drug.
“Truvada still has patent protection in the United States and in the rest of the world it is generic,” he said, and then claimed that it will be available as a generic drug in the U.S. in September 2020.
Ocasio-Cortez was not satisfied with this answer, however, and she pointed out that the drug was originally discovered to be effective in preventing HIV infections by a federal lab in Atlanta — and she said that the U.S. government had patented the drug’s use for such treatments.
“We the people developed this drug,” she said. “We paid for this drug… There is no reason this should be $2,000 a month. People are dying because of it!”
O’Day, however, has maintained that the patents the government has related to Truvada and HIV prevention are invalid.
Watch the video below.
We the people developed this drug. We paid for this drug. Despite the fact that the patent is owned by the public, we refuse to enforce it. There is no reason this should be $2,000 a month. People are dying for no reason.
— Public Citizen (@Public_Citizen) May 16, 2019
‘It is a stain on our country’: Elizabeth Warren joins protest outside child detention facility in Florida
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, one of the frontrunners for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, joined a protest in front of a migrant detention center Wednesday morning—hours before she was expected to join nine other members of her party for the first primary debate.
"There are a lot of different ways that we get in the fight," Warren said to supporters on social media. "And one of them is that you show up."
There are a lot of different ways that we get in the fight. And one of them is that you show up. I'm at the Homestead detention center today and I hope you'll be watching. https://t.co/vzXqUlaiIM
‘None of your business!’ Trump lashes out when reporter asks him about meeting with Putin
While leaving for his trip to Japan on Wednesday, President Donald Trump stopped to speak with the press on the South Lawn of the White House, where one reporter asked a question that clearly struck a nerve.
Sarah Westwood, a reporter for CNN, asked Trump whether he planned on telling Russian President Vladimir Putin at their upcoming meeting not to interfere in the 2016 election.
“I’ll have a very good conversation with him,” Trump said. Then, with venom in his voice and facial expression, he added: “What I say to him is none of your business!”
Trump frequently lashes out at reporters, but his insults and broadsides tend to seem performative — it’s clear he enjoys lambasting reporters when he gets the chance. But this question really appeared to get under Trump’s skin, eliciting an outburst that showed how sensitive he is about the issue and prompting him to quickly move on to another question. Before this question, he had said of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation and the continuing probes driven by congressional Democrats, “The Mueller thing never stops! … At what point does it end?”
Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos’ Seattle suburb is running out of money thanks to lax taxation
The government of one of America's richest zip codes may soon run out of money to keep the lights on.
CNBC reports that the small town of Medina, Washington will have a budget referendum in November to raise taxes and prevent a budget shortfall in the coming fiscal year.
The idea of Medina being cash-strapped seems counter-intuitive given that both Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos have houses there. What's more, Medina has an average home value of $2.77 million and a median household income of around $186,000.