As the Congressional “Super Committee” begins its search for $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction, a new study released today by MASSPIRG’s national affiliate, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) and the National Taxpayers Union (NTU) provides the panel with more than $1 trillion of spending cuts with appeal from across the political spectrum.
The Prescription Drug and Medical Device Ban is an important consumer protection law aimed at driving down our highest-in-the-nation, spiraling health care costs by reining in the drug and medical device industries’ aggressive marketing tactics. Among other things, the law bans gifts and/or payments of more than $50, including restaurant meals and entertainment, to physicians and other prescribers, from drug and medical device companies.
National elected leaders have recently proposed a range of spending cuts. The vast majority of these cuts come from programs widely viewed as providing broad public benefits or serving national priorities, including programs providing access to higher education, food safety, product safety, clean air and drinking water, and financial sector oversight to protect consumers and avoid future bank bailouts. In addressing the deficit, our leaders should examine all areas of spending where programs do not deliver benefits to the public. Our leaders should also address spending that takes place through tax code exemptions and through the appropriations process. These expenditures have the same impact on the national deficit as direct spending, and they should also be transparent, accountable and serve the public.