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House gives its approval to a package that includes pharmaceutical price curbs

US House Pelosi Inflation Reduction Act.jpeg
AP
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., leads a vote on the Inflation Reduction Act in the House chamber at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Aug. 12, 2022.

A divided Congress gave final passage to Democrats’ flagship climate and health care bill.

Democrats have pushed their landmark climate and health care bill through Congress, handing an election-year victory to President Joe Biden.

The House approved the bill over solid Republican opposition Friday, five days after the Senate did the same.

It includes $64 billion to help 13 million people pay premiums over the next three years for privately bought health insurance. Medicare would gain the power to negotiate its costs for pharmaceuticals, initially in 2026 for only 10 drugs. Medicare beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket prescription costs would be limited to $2,000 starting in 2025, and beginning next year would pay no more than $35 monthly for insulin, the costly diabetes drug.

The package is much smaller than Biden's original environment and social legislation that failed in Congress last year. But after long, bitter talks, Democrats agreed to a smaller but still substantive compromise.

The bill, labeled the "Inflation Reduction Act," includes Washington's biggest ever effort on climate change, pharmaceutical price curbs and tax boosts on big corporations, long-held party goals.

The president says he will sign the legislation this week.

Click here to read more of this article from the Associated Press.