RICHMOND, Va. — Months after urging House Republicans to kill legislation that would have lowered the cost of medicine for millions of Virginians, Gov. Glenn Youngkin last Wednesday reported a $60,000 contribution from Big Pharma into his Spirit of Virginia PAC.
Earlier this year, the Youngkin administration testified against legislation that would have created a Prescription Drug Affordability Board – an independent group of experts with the power to cap the prices of certain high-cost prescription drugs. The bill passed out of the Senate with strong bipartisan support, but was killed by a Republican-controlled committee in the House of Delegates. Youngkin’s Spirit of Virginia PAC is the largest donor to the Republican Party of Virginia and a top donor to the Republican House and Senate caucuses.
“This new contribution confirms what we already knew: Extreme Republican legislators will put pharmaceutical companies’ interests first over affordable medicines for working families,” said Freedom Virginia Executive Director Rhena Hicks. “Governor Youngkin opposed this bill, and extreme Republicans followed his guidance to kill it. Now they’re all benefiting from Big Pharma’s money this fall.”
Pharmaceutical companies boasted multi-billion dollar revenues in the second quarter of 2023. Meanwhile, one in four Virginians report not taking their medicine as prescribed simply because they cannot afford to.
A recent poll from AARP showed three-quarters of Virginia voters support creating a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, with 60 percent of voters reporting they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who supports such a proposal.