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Senate Democrats aim for Manchin's support with new prescription drug bill

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Senate Democrats aim for Manchin's support with new prescription drug bill
Senate Democrats released a revised plan Wednesday to lower the cost of prescription drugs in a new bid to push forward with some aspects of President Joe Biden’s spending package introduced late last year. File Photo by stevepb/Pixabay

July 6 (UPI) -- Senate Democrats released a revised plan Wednesday to lower the cost of prescription drugs in a new bid to push forward with some aspects of President Joe Biden's spending package introduced late last year.

The Prescription Drug Pricing Reform would lower prices by negotiating large quantities from drug companies and potentially saving the government billions of dollars.

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The proposal was negotiated with West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, seen as a key swing vote in the evenly divided Senate.

Early in the year, the financially-conservative Manchin walked away from Biden's infrastructure bill, declaring at the time the Build Back Better bill was "dead."

The prescription drug proposal is seen as an attempt by Democratic Senate leaders to push through a watered down version of their tax and climate spending bill during the current session.

Top Democrats will attempt to avoid a Republican filibuster in the Senate and pass the legislation with a simple majority vote by using the reconciliation process.

Manchin's vote would be a key to passing any such legislation using that process.

"Senator Manchin has long advocated for proposals that would lower prescription drug costs for seniors and his support for this proposal has never been in question," Manchin spokeswoman Sam Runyon said in a statement to Business Insider.

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"He's glad that all 50 Democrats agree."

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