Raising Eyebrows: EpiPen CEO's Dad Is a Senator

Mylan's Heather Bresch is the daughter of Sen. Joe Manchin
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2016 11:03 AM CDT
Drug CEO's Dad in Senate Now a Big Focus
Mylan Pharmaceuticals CEO Heather Bresch.   (AP Photo/Dale Sparks, File)

Prior to the recent outrage at drugmaker Mylan for jacking the price of EpiPens into the stratosphere, it wasn't widely known that company CEO Heather Bresch, 47, was the daughter of Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia. That has changed in a big way, with major media outlets now weighing in. Some coverage:

  • CNN points out an interesting contrast: One of the most vocal critics of Mylan is Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota—because her own daughter needs EpiPens for severe allergies. She now finds herself challenging a company run by the daughter of a colleague.

  • Bloomberg sees evidence of "lawmakers tiptoeing around the usual Washington blame game" in deference to Manchin, with senators calling out Mylan but hesitating when it comes to demanding that Bresch herself testify.
  • Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal, chair of the Judiciary panel, insists that Bresch's family connection will have no bearing on things, per the New York Times.
  • It's not the first time Mylan has put Manchin in an "awkward" spot, notes the Washington Post. He previously spoke out against a tax break called an "inversion" after Mylan incorporated itself in the Netherlands.
  • Bernie Sanders, for one, tied the controversies together in a tweet.
  • The Intercept has deeper background, noting that Manchin himself put in a word with Mylan's then-CEO in 1992 to get his daughter an entry-level job. She eventually became the company's chief lobbyist and played a role in shaping laws that have helped Mylan.
  • A post at Consumer Affairs heaves a sigh: "Manchin is expected to keep a low profile as the storm rolls through Congress and dissipates, as many observers now think it will. After all, Senatorial courtesy generally takes precedence over consumer protection."
  • Mylan took steps on Thursday to make the drug cheaper for some.
(More EpiPen stories.)

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