COLUMBUS — Congressman Jim Renacci sided with Big Pharma today at the City Club of Cleveland, criticizing lawsuits against drug companies that have contributed to the Buckeye State’s overdose epidemic, which claimed the lives of more than 4,000 Ohioans last year.
“Jim Renacci is trying to run for governor, but he doesn’t have the first clue about how to deal with the nation’s worst opioid crisis, which is happening right here in Ohio,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper. “First, Jim attacked Medicaid, which has been the single-biggest resource in fighting this crisis. Now he wants to tie the hands of state and local governments that are trying to hold the prescription drug companies accountable for deceptive marketing and flooding communities with highly addictive pain pills. Ohio needs more resources to help addicts get clean and attack the opioid epidemic proactively, but Jim Renacci wants to slash funding for treatment and let Big Pharma off the hook.
“The irony is that while Candidate Renacci says he doesn’t think lawsuits are the answer, Businessman Renacci clearly doesn’t think it’s a problem to use the courts when it suits his own interests. He filed more than 10 lawsuits against other people and corporations during his business career.”
At today’s City Club event, Renacci offered these remarks [starts at 30:35]:
“It’s not about money. It’s not about suing drug manufacturers. Because if you don’t like the drug situation, you say, well I’m going to sue the drug manufacturers. The next time there’s a car accident, are you going to sue the car manufacturer? The next time someone uses a gun, are you going to sue the gun manufacturer? Those aren’t the answers, in suing the manufacturers.”
According to Governing magazine, more than 100 states, cities and counties have filed lawsuits to hold prescription drug companies accountable for their role in the opioid epidemic.