Washington, DC - Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid issued the following statement in response to last night’s vote of no confidence in the Bush Administration’s implementation of the prescription drug program. A majority of Senators voted to delay the late enrollment penalty and provide emergency relief from the botched transition to the new federal drug program last night:
“Last night, a bipartisan majority of the Senate voted to start cleaning up the mess the Bush Administration has made of the prescription drug program. Senators who both supported and opposed the original legislation joined together in expressing no confidence in the president’s implementation of the drug program and in saying Congress should intervene now to ensure that seniors and people with disabilities will have access to affordable, comprehensive, and understandable drug coverage.
“The Administration has failed to put beneficiaries first, and we can no longer ignore their glaring incompetence in administering this new program. It is just another cost of the Republican culture of corruption that the special interests are getting what they need while the rest of America continues to struggle to make sense of this unnecessarily complicated program. Last night’s vote should come as no surprise to the Administration and should serve as a signal to seniors that we are gaining ground in our fight to improve the benefit for them.”