Voters in Ohio on Tuesday overwhelmingly defeated a ballot proposal aimed at reining in what state agencies pay for prescription drugs.
The Drug Price Relief Act, also known as Issue 2 on the Ohio ballot, would have required state agencies to pay no more for medications that the federal Department of Veterans Affairs, which gets a 24 percent discount off manufacturers’ average prices.
Nearly 80 percent of voters rejected the measure, which had been the subject of an intense and expensive political fight. The proposal, and the competing claims about its likely effects and whether it would be enforceable in practice, created significant confusion among voters.
The outcome is being described as a victory for the pharmaceutical industry, whose lobbying group reportedly spent nearly $60 million on efforts to kill the proposal after spending more than $100 million fighting a similar measure that was also defeated in California last year.