but how will you pay for it?
President Trump has launched a last-minute prescription drug payment plan with no clear way to pay for it.
Trump announced Thursday that his administration would be mailing $200 prescription drug coupons to seniors using Medicare, totaling $6.6 billion. But as of Friday morning, the Department of Health and Human Services was still figuring out where that money would come from.
In what Stat News called a "political ploy" just six weeks before Election Day, Trump issued executive orders promising to send coupons to 33 million Medicare beneficiaries "to curry favor with seniors who view drug prices as a priority." The $6.6 billion to pay for it would apparently come from Trump's proposed "most favored nations" drug pricing proposal, which would mandate the Medicare program would only pay the lowest international price for prescription drugs. But while the rule change could save the Medicare system money, it isn't even in place yet; Trump's Thursday executive order would only direct HHS to explore the favored nations proposal.
As The New York Times' Maggie Haberman also noted, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has pushed for the coupon deal despite being a notorious "budget hawk" who always wants to know where government spending is coming from.