Sen. Daines outlines upcoming priorities in Congress

HELENA – Drug prices was one of the topics U.S. Senator Steve Daines discussed with lawmakers on Friday.

The Republican addressed the legislature and spoke briefly with reporters about his priorities for Congress.

When asked what solution he would like to see for border security — and keeping the government open, in two weeks — Sen. Daines said he still thinks a partial wall along the Southern border is a reasonable request.

But, above all, he wants both sides to compromise.

“The right answer is to come up with a bipartisan solution,” Daines said. “Nancy Pelosi said we’re not going to negotiate until the government is opened back up? The president opened it up again and now it’s time to get down to the table and come up with a solution.”

“There are 700 miles of wall right now on the Southern border. He’s looking at a couple hundred miles more. That’s it. That ought to be a reasonable kind of issue to resolve,” Sen. Daines added.

The Republican said border security is also key to helping solve what he calls a “methepidemic” facing the state.

On legal drug prices – Daines told lawmakers in Helena that lowering them should be a bipartisan issue as well.

Without specifying what he supports – Daines told MTN News that it may take a range of proposals to get the job done.

“I don’t think there’s one silver bullet to solve the problem – it’s silver buckshot,” Daines said. “This is an opportunity here to take a lot of middlemen out of the equation […] to find ways that the federal government can use their negotiating power to lower price.”

“The bottom line is this: I want to see a result,” he added.

Montana’s junior senator had one more example of bipartisan cooperation he says may actually happen: Permanently reauthorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which has financed scores of projects in Montana.

He said U.S. Senate leaders have agreed to put it on the floor, next week.