Redonda Miller (right), president of Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., speak to journalists after their White House meeting Wednesday with President Donald Trump on the high cost of prescription drugs. "I can't have that meeting, '" Trump said. In a press conference last month, the president said he had been scheduled to meet with Cummings, but the congressman backed out of the meeting because, in Mr. Trump's telling, "He was probably told, 'Don't meet with Trump".
Cummings responded there never was a meeting and said in a statement, "I have no idea why President Trump would make up a story about me like he did today".
Chaffetz and Cummings also said federal employees' reported use of encrypted messaging apps such as Confide or WhatsApp could "result in the creation of presidential or federal records that would be unlikely or impossible to preserve".
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The president called Cummings and asked to meet with him after watching him discuss drug prices on a morning cable news show.
Cummings, a longtime resident of Baltimore, said he urged the president to acknowledge that not all African-American-majority neighborhoods are "places of depression [and] where people are being harmed".
In a much-cited but now decade-old letter to Congress, the Congressional Budget Office estimated giving HHS authority to negotiate prices alone would have only a "negligible effect on Medicare drug spending". He said he brought up voter suppression as a serious issue that should be part of any investigation into voting.
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Wednesday's meeting stems from President Trump's promise that he would support efforts to stop the skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs.
The president "seemed to get it" on both issues, Cummings said.
The statement did not mention Cummings' comments about Trump's language regarding African-American communities or voting. Trump used the meeting to talk about how the government, with its buying power, could negotiate for lower prices and a better deal for the taxpayer, the lawmakers at the meeting said. "We called, called, called, called", he said.
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"What we have is a lot of pharmaceutical companies that are raising the prices of drugs unreasonably".