Scott Wagner On Governor Wolf’s $1 Million Drug Formulary Veto “This guy should be arrested” 

Last Friday, Tom Wolf vetoed a bill SB 936, legislation to curtail the overprescription of opioids and eliminate payments for unproven, compounded pain creams that can cost thousands of dollars per tube. In response, 2018 Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner went on Ken Matthews’ WHP radio program later that evening and blasted the Governor for having his veto bought and paid for by the special interests funding his re-election campaign.

Listen to the full exchange HERE.

TRANSCRIPT

KEN MATTHEWS: I know something just happened in Harrisburg minutes ago and you’re not too happy with how it’s unfolding.

SCOTT WAGNER: Well Ken, what happened this afternoon was Governor Wolf vetoed Senate Bill 936. And this was a major bipartisan reform proposal aimed at curbing opioid abuse by requiring Pennsylvania to adopt a nationally recognized evidence based drug formulary for the workers comp system. The bottom line is that this Governor went and vetoed this bill. But here’s where it gets more sort of like very sketchy. What’s interesting is there is a PAC called Fairness PA based out of Philadelphia. Well Fairness PA has contributors from a large law firm that does workers compensation work for injured workers. Then there are doctors down in the Philadelphia area that are also a part of this PAC called Fairness PA. So the bottom line is that this PAC gave Governor Wolf $1 million dollars last year – and I’m going to quote, this is out of a Philadelphia paper – and it says, “a closer analysis shows that Fairness PA has also become a channel for doctors and lawyers who own pharmacies to put their campaign contributions to use. Their donations are coming in as lawmakers debate a bill that could put an end to the controversial practice of pharmacies billing insurers for unproven creams that cost $4,000 a tube or more.” Let’s cut to the chase here. Listen, I’m watched by every group, I have trackers following me all the time, I got George Soros –

KEN MATTHEWS: I’m familiar with the trackers that follow you and you don’t tolerate it, good for you.

SCOTT WAGNER: I personally think that this – you know, Ken, I would like to know who we could call, call the FBI, call the Attorney General. This Governor took $1 million from a PAC that is owned by or contributed to, the contributions come in from law firms and also from doctors and they own pharmacies, and we have an opioid crisis here in Pennsylvania. What’s this all about? You know what, if you look at Governor Wolf, he has taken since 2013, just from six entities, $8.5 million. You know, Ken, we went through all this redistricting mess, do you know that the Governor just received $250,000 from the Democratic redistricting PAC? But let’s go back to this $1 million he received from this PAC. The bottom line is that there is probably a couple right now, a mother and father, that are at an emergency room somewhere in Pennsylvania and they have just been informed by a doctor that their son or daughter just died in the emergency room over a heroin and opioid overdose. And this guy turns around and vetoes a bill that would reduce and start controlling opioid prescriptions.

KEN MATTHEWS: To me that’s where the conflict is. The conflict is not necessarily taking donations from doctors or pharmacies, the conflict is if you veto a bill that directly impacts the pharmacies and the doctors. So by vetoing the bill he has really flagged this whole situation hasn’t he?

SCOTT WAGNER: Well listen, last week the same day or the day after the House passed this bill, this is Senate Bill 936, Governor Wolf was actually seen at this law firm in Philadelphia. We have his schedule. He went there. You talk about conflict – I mean, come on, it’s time, listen, Ken, we have a heroin opioid crisis in this state. Over 5,000 people are going to die in Pennsylvania this year alone, but this Governor just continues to take money from special interest groups. It’s time to get rid of this guy. This is absolutely appalling. We in the House and Senate, and the Capitol right now is rattling about what’s going on. The Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association is absolutely livid and appalled. The Pennsylvania State Chamber who represents businesses all across Pennsylvania are outraged. This guy – $1 million – this guy should be arrested. Because I believe, number one, visiting a law firm where you got the money, went from that law firm to this PAC, and then there is a bill pending and you go to the law firm, I mean come on, it’s about time we do something about this Governor.

KEN MATTHEWS: Sounds like a conflict.

BACKGROUND

The PAC, Fairness PA gave Wolf  $1 million in the second half of 2017 and $100,000 so far in 2018. As the Philadelphia Inquirer reported, much of Fairness PA’s funding comes from doctors and lawyers who own pharmacies and want to see SB 936 defeated.

  • “Fairness PA also received $42,000 last year from Pond Lehocky’s political action committee, Pennsylvanians for Injured Workers, whose donors include doctors from the Insight network and doctors with ownership stakes in the Workers First pharmacy. Attorney Sam Pond has been leading the opposition to legislation to create a workers’ comp drug formulary. Wolf shares that position.” (Inquirer, 3/9/18)
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