WASHINGTON -- The move to legalize the importation of prescription
drugs from Canada appeared to gain momentum yesterday as the
chairman of the key Senate health committee vowed to introduce
a bill within the next few weeks.
Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), chairman of the Health, Education,
Labor and Pensions Committee, said he will introduce a measure
after the Memorial Day recess. Last month, Sen. Charles Grassley
(R-Iowa), chairman of the Finance Committee, proposed a bill
to legalize importation.
With seniors complaining of skyrocketing drug costs and elections
looming, pressure is mounting for lawmakers to drive down
prices and support reimportation. Even federal Health and
Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, who opposes reimportation,
recently acknowledged that it is all but inevitable that Congress
will pass a bill this year.