Leader's Report
For Immediate Release: 
December 13, 2019
Contact Info: 
Mariel Saez 202-225-3130

House Democrats campaigned on the pledge to bring down the skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs and level the playing field for American patients who are paying far more for their medicines than patients are charged in other countries. I’m very proud we delivered on that pledge with passage of H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act. The legislation gives Medicare the power to negotiate directly with the drug companies to bring down prices, and makes the lower drug prices negotiated by Medicare available to Americans with private insurance as well as those on Medicare. The legislation saves taxpayers approximately $500 billion over the next ten years and reinvests those savings to expand Medicare benefits to cover dental, vision and hearing; research new cures and treatments; expand Community Health Centers; combat the opioid epidemic; and address the maternal mortality rate. The President promised the American people in 2016 that he would “negotiate like crazy” to address prescription drug prices, and that’s what H.R. 3 does, so I would hope he would work with us to see this legislation enacted.

The House also passed a defense bill that will strengthen national security and ensure our servicemembers have the resources to defend our country and do their jobs safely.  It was a compromise measure negotiated by the House, Senate, and White House. I was disappointed with some aspects of the legislation, in particular the exclusion of language to undo the President’s ban on transgender servicemembers, which I will continue to fight, and that the bill did not include a comprehensive set of provisions to protect communities affected by PFAS chemicals. I intend to bring the PFAS Action Act to the House Floor for a vote in January. However, I was very pleased that the bill included 12 weeks of paid parental leave for all federal employees starting October 2020.  When it appeared that conferees were going to extend this benefit to Department of Defense employees only, I sent a letter urging that all federal employees be covered by it. I believe that federal employees should receive full paid family and medical leave benefits, but paid parental leave represents a significant first step. I’ll keep working to ensure full paid family and medical leave benefits for all workers.

Next week, the House will consider two articles of impeachment against the President of the United States: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. We are doing so because the President has left us with no choice: he abused the power of his office for his own personal benefit and at the expense of our national interests, and when he was caught, he proceeded with an unprecedented pattern of obstruction and held himself above the law. This is a sad moment for our nation, and House Democrats will consider these articles with seriousness, solemnity, and a focus on our duty to uphold the oaths we took to defend the Constitution and the rule of law.

Finally, I’d like to remind all Americans that open enrollment ends this Sunday, December 15. Please visit healthcare.gov today to review your options and sign up for coverage.

Sincerely yours,
Steny H. Hoyer
P.S. Please invite your friends and family to sign up for this newsletter to learn more about how House Democrats are working For the People. You can also get the latest updates and join the conversation on my FacebookTwitter, and Instagram accounts.


On H.R. 3 On the NDAA Conference Report On Impeachment Hoyer Statement on the Fourth Anniversary of the Paris Climate Agreement

Hoyer Statement on USMCA Trade Agreement