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Letter to the House opposing the Kingston amendment

August 02, 2007

Dear Representative:

On behalf of the National Education Association's (NEA) 3.2 million members, we urge you to vote NO on an amendment to be offered today by Representative Kingston (R-GA) to the Agriculture Appropriations bill that would strike language regarding importation of prescription drugs. Votes associated with this issue may be included in the NEA Legislative Report Card for the 110th Congress. 

Current federal law prohibits consumers in the United States from taking advantage of the global marketplace to purchase affordable prescription drugs. In fact, Americans pay the highest prices in the world for the same medicines available at a fraction of the price to citizens in other industrialized nations. As a result, millions of senior citizens and individuals with disabilities, many of them retired educators living on fixed incomes, in addition to those without health insurance, face escalating medication costs. They are some of the many Americans living on fixed incomes who must often choose between buying prescription drugs or paying for food and rent.

The Kingston amendment would strike language from the Agriculture Appropriations bill that prohibits the use of funds to prevent importation of prescription drugs. Striking this language would undermine efforts to allow consumers to purchase safe, affordable prescription drugs from other industrialized nations.

We urge your opposition to the Kingston amendment.

Sincerely,

Diane Shust, Director of Government Relations

Randall Moody, Manager of Federal Advocacy