Monday, August 06, 2007

John Edwards and ... Pedigree?

It's official! E-pedigree has now become a campaign issue as we enter the final 15 (!) months before the 2008 Presidential election.

Presidential candidate John Edwards just issued his Smarter Trade That Puts Workers First, which includes the following unexpected statement:

Big drug companies have lobbied and litigated to prevent enforcement of the drug safety law passed in 1988. As president, John Edwards will require the pharmaceutical industry to quickly implement non-forgeable electronic "track-and-trace pedigrees" to ensure that drugs stay safe at every step in the supply chain, from factory to store. He will also start enforcing laws requiring sellers to prove that their drugs came from an authorized distributor and close the loophole that allows big drug wholesalers to ignore pedigree requirements.

(Note to John’s speechwriter: For the record, it is actually smaller wholesalers, not "big drug companies," that have litigated to prevent enforcement of the PDMA. See It's Official: PDMA is Back On Hold for some background.)

Notably, Edwards implies that he wants Federal pre-emption over state pedigree laws to close loopholes for "big drug wholesalers." This is deeply ironic, given the lobbying activities now underway. Politics does indeed make strange bedfellows.

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