Published on
by
The Los Angeles Times

Obama Gives Powerful Drug Lobby a Seat at Healthcare Table

by
Tom Hamburger

Reporting from Washington --
As a candidate for president, Barack Obama lambasted drug companies and the influence they wielded in Washington. He even ran a television ad
targeting the industry's chief lobbyist, former Louisiana congressman
Billy Tauzin, and the role Tauzin played in preventing Medicare from
negotiating for lower drug prices.

Since the election, Tauzin has morphed into the president's partner. He
has been invited to the White House half a dozen times in recent
months. There, he says, he eventually secured an agreement that the
administration wouldn't try to overturn the very Medicare drug policy
that Obama had criticized on the campaign trail.

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