Today, the House Oversight Committee is holding an important hearing entitled "The Role of Pharmacy…
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House Hearing Spotlights Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) as Drivers of Higher Drug Prices

Today, the House Oversight Committee is holding an important hearing entitled "The Role of Pharmacy Benefit Managers in Prescription Drug Markets Part III:  Transparency and Accountability."

For those unfamiliar, Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) amount to middlemen that control prescription drugs for millions of Americans.  A majority of Americans receive health insurance through employer plans or government programs such as Medicare, which in turn cover prescription drugs through PBMs.  Those PBMs negotiate with drug companies and pay pharmacies, but throughout the process determine the drugs that insured patients may obtain and at what cost.

The problem is that PBMs operate in such an opaque and complex manner that they're able to inflate drug costs while claiming to be working…[more]

July 23, 2024 • 04:57 PM

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Alvin Bragg – Nothing to Brag About Print
By Betsy McCaughey
Wednesday, June 05 2024
Here's the zinger: Despite spending years and millions of dollars pursuing Trump, Bragg claims he lacks the resources to bring thieves to trial.

Saturday afternoon, a Duane Reade security guard was severely stabbed and a shopper threatened by a knife-wielding thief at one of the chain's midtown Manhattan stores.

Roughly 12 hours later, a straphanger was shot in the hand as his train pulled into the 86th street and Lexington Avenue platform.

That's life in Manhattan, where transit crime, assault and shoplifting are raging.

"The city has changed so much," warned Ermal Gura, 35, of Staten Island, who barely escaped the knife-wielding thief. "We have to watch our backs in the stores and on the subway."

That's because Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg doesn't have New Yorkers' backs.

Thursday, minutes after securing a guilty verdict against former President Donald Trump on 34 felony counts, Bragg boasted, "I did my job."

Bragg's not doing his job. The mainstream media are gushing with adulation. But New Yorkers living in constant fear should find Bragg's stardom nauseating.

He's being hailed as a hero, but he's a menace.

Bragg should prioritize jailing violent criminals and repeat offenders, including the shoplifting gangs that are forcing stores to close.

Since the year before he took office, grand larceny crimes  theft of property worth over $1,000  are up 33%.

Here's the zinger: Despite spending years and millions of dollars pursuing Trump, Bragg claims he lacks the resources to bring thieves to trial.

In Dec. 2022, with the DA's investigation of Trump in full swing, cops arrested Charles Lindsay, 22, and charged him with four heists in one week at high-end Madison Avenue boutiques, where he was alleged to have stolen nearly $25,000 in goods, including luxury handbags.

Four grand larceny charges. Lindsay was known to belong to a gang targeting the area and had a long rap sheet.

Yet the DA's office let Lindsay off, dropping the charges if he consented to five counseling sessions. He didn't even have to pay the stores for the goods.

Bragg's office said prosecutors had too much on their plates to try the case.

Criminal lawyer and former Bronx Assistant District Attorney Michael Discioarro said Bragg has 300 prosecutors. "What exactly is he working on?" Discioarro said in a Feb. 2023 interview. Definitely not getting criminals off the streets.

Two months after Lindsay got his sweetheart deal, he was nailed for packing a pistol and mugging a 14-year-old on a Brooklyn playground. The Brooklyn DA's office had the good sense to ask for $100,000 bail.

Bragg sides with the criminals. That includes fare-beaters. People who beat the fare often have rap sheets and open warrants for more serious crimes. Criminals don't conscientiously pay the fare, then they rob and assault other riders. Enforcing the fare would keep crime down.

New York state's bizarre criminal justice "reforms" are partly to blame for the crime surge, but Bragg refuses to recommend bail or incarceration even when the law permits it.

Public anger against Bragg soared when he released four migrant teens charged with beating up two cops in Times Square in February. No bail required. At that point, 20 Republican state senators sent a letter to New York Gov. Kathy Hochul urging her to remove Bragg as DA, explaining that "his incredibly poor judgment is matched only by his unwillingness to take criminals off the street."

On April 16, in the midst of his own trial, Trump visited the scene of one of Bragg's biggest mistakes in judgment  the Sanaa Convenient Store in Harlem. Showing total disdain for the right to self-defense, Bragg had charged Jose Alba, clerk at the bodega, with second-degree murder after he stabbed a career criminal who had attacked him over a bag of chips. When the public grew outraged, the charges were dropped.

The bodega's co-owner told Trump he's still grappling with rampant crime. Trump pledged to straighten New York out, adding, "Alvin Bragg does nothing."

Nothing to keep New Yorkers safe.

"Bragg watched his place in the history books take shape," The Washington Post wrote after Bragg won a conviction against Trump. That's the problem. New Yorkers need a DA who watches out for them, not for himself.


Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York and chairman of the Committee to Reduce Infection Deaths. 

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