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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Melissa Hortman (DFL)

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House DFL statement on insulin legislation

Thursday, October 17, 2019

St. Paul, Minnesota — Today, Governor Tim Walz called on Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka to take action on insulin affordability and begin negotiations with the House. In an October 1st letter to Gov. Walz, House Speaker Melissa Hortman announced that she asked Representatives Howard, Liebling, Halverson, and Mann to serve on an Emergency Access to Insulin Work Group to meet with the Senate and resolve the differences between the House and Senate bills.

Speaker Hortman and Majority Leader Ryan Winkler released the following statements:

“Minnesotans need and deserve access to emergency insulin — which the Senate bill doesn’t provide,” said Speaker Hortman. “The House DFL remains ready to work with Senate Republicans and the Walz Administration to find a solution that serves the needs of Minnesotans and holds the pharmaceutical industry accountable. Lives are at stake and it’s time for Senate Republicans to come to the table and begin working on a compromise with us. Governor Walz and I have named the individuals who can start working on this right away. We continue to wait for Senator Gazelka to name which Senators will speak for the Senate in a work group so we can commence negotiations on a compromise. Simply reiterating that he has taken a position different from ours doesn't help anyone get emergency access to insulin.”

“Throughout this entire process, Senate Republicans have used excuses and strategic moves to look like they want to take action on insulin affordability without actually doing anything,” said Majority Leader Winkler. “The reality is we have to take on the pharmaceutical industry and hold them accountable if we’re going to help Minnesotans. It’s been consistently clear that Republicans don’t want to do that.”