Hillary Clinton

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton campaigns in Baton Rouge, La., on Monday. (Jonathan Bachman / Associated Press)

By Evan Halper and Noam N. Levey
September 21, 2015

Democrats facing tough elections have been running away from Obamacare in their campaigns almost since the law was passed, but Hillary Rodham Clinton is taking a different approach. She is embracing it.

On the campaign trail, Clinton is leaning into the Affordable Care Act, touting the health insurance mandate as a signature achievement of Democrats as the law — about which the public remains deeply divided — has become firmly embedded in the nation’s healthcare system and is delivering sweeping new benefits to millions of voters.

On Tuesday, Clinton will unveil a plan to expand the law’s reach with a proposal to force down the prices of prescription drugs. She will call for new federal rules to cap what consumers are forced to pay out of pocket for medicines, and she would allow the federal government to negotiate directly with drug makers to secure lower drug costs for seniors on Medicare.

“I want to do more to bring down the costs for families,” Clinton said at a rally here, where she previewed the plan. “It is disgraceful…. Medications for a lot of diseases are going up to thousands of dollars a month.”

The plan would allow Americans to buy prescription drugs abroad, where prices are often lower; prohibit drug companies from writing off the cost of advertising; and limit profits the companies can make from drugs developed with the help of federal research subsidies. It would also boost spending at the Food and Drug Administration so prescription drugs could be approved for sale more quickly.

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