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Sen. Smith Introduces Bill to Hold Drug Companies More Accountable

Sen. Tina Smith is introducing a bill that would require drug companies to be more transparent about where they're spending their tax breaks.

Smith said drug companies should fully disclose how they're using the tax breaks they were awarded in the Republican tax bill. 

"Let's have a little accountability here to tell us, to tell all of the people who are buying your expensive drugs, what you did with those windfalls, how did you spend them, and what, if anything did you do to help lower drug prices, which is such a big problem for people."

Smith said public records on how companies spending it are limited, and how they're spending varies widely.

She said some of the records show companies are spending their cuts on pay raises for their CEOs, dividend increases and stock buybacks, rather than on wages or reducing drug costs.

Smith's bill would require pharmaceutical companies to report key data in their annual filings, including dividend increases, bonuses or pay raises for executives, and research spending on prescription drugs.

"I hope this would give us a base of information that will help us make better decisions about what we can do to lower prescription drug costs." 

She said this is just one step in finding ways to lower drug costs and create transparency.

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