SACRAMENTO– Sacramento Superior Court Judge Christopher E. Krueger today rejected a meritless lawsuit filed by the Yes on Prop 61 campaign challenging the independent, nonpartisan Legislative Analyst’s (LAO) fiscal review of Prop 61. Yes on 61 sued in an attempt to change wording in the LAO analysis, hoping to mitigate the LAO’s conclusion that if Prop 61 passes, prices to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs could increase.
By rejecting Yes on 61’s lawsuit, the judge validated the LAO’s statement that passage of Prop 61 could result in prescription drug price increases for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
“The unfortunate truth is that Prop 61 is going to take away a special benefit provided to veterans who have served our country bravely, and in doing so could increase prescription drug costs for veterans. That’s why Prop 61 is opposed by 20 leading veterans organizations like the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of California and the Vietnam Veterans of America, California State Council,” said Dale Smith, Commander, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of California.
“This is another attempt by the Yes on 61 campaign to cloud the issues surrounding their flawed Prop 61 and run away from the negative impacts their measure is going to inflict on veterans and all Californians,” said Kathy Fairbanks, No on Prop 61 spokesperson. “But, like so many of their misleading claims, independent experts are flat out rejecting Yes on 61’s propaganda.”
In its response to the lawsuit challenging its analysis, the LAO reiterated for the third time that if Prop 61 passes, the VA, and by extension veterans in California and nationwide, could face higher drug costs. From the pleadings filed in the case:
“In fact, the VA determined that if VA drug prices were to increase up to the federal price caps, overall VA prescription drug spending would increase by $3.8 billion annually, resulting in approximately a 60 percent increase in annual VA drug expenditures.”
(Source: Declaration of Deputy Legislative Analyst Mark Newton In Support of Real Party In Interest [Legislative Analyst] Mac Taylor’s Opposition to Petition for Writ of Mandate, page 4-5)
“… would (A) be unnecessary for voters to understand the basic desired takeaway that state savings under Proposition 61 may be reduced by increases in the VA’s drug prices…” (page 4)
(Source: Declaration of Deputy Legislative Analyst Mark Newton In Support of Real Party In Interest [Legislative Analyst] Mac Taylor’s Opposition to Petition for Writ of Mandate, page 4)
“Petitioner is simply attempting to obtain a judicial order requiring a statement more favorable to Proposition 61’s proponents to be inserted into the Legislative Analyst’s impartial analysis.”
(Source: Memorandum of Points and Authorities In Support of Real Party In Interest [Legislative Analyst] Mac Taylor’s Opposition to Petition for Writ of Mandate, page 8)
BACKGROUND ON PROP 61
Prop 61 is a deceptive, deeply-flawed proposition that would be bad for patients, harmful for veterans and expensive for taxpayers. It will increase prescription drug costs, jeopardize patient access to medicines and result in more bureaucracy, red tape and lawsuits. Prop 61 also would take away a special prescription drug benefit promised to our veterans. More than 100 organizations oppose Prop 61.
For more information on Prop 61, go to www.noprop61.com