White House deal with drug firms draws flak
An $80-billion pact with the pharmaceutical industry intended to advance the administration’s healthcare reform goals has instead created confusion and discord.
By Tom Hamburger
August 14, 2009
Reporting from Washington – An $80-billion deal with the drug industry that the White House thought would add momentum to its campaign for national healthcare reform has instead provoked a political tempest, frustrating and bewildering some of the president’s most important allies.
As complaints rolled in, the administration offered varying, sometimes contradictory explanations of the deal.
“I’ve heard a lot of confusion about what was agreed to,” said Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Beverly Hills), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, who wrote healthcare legislation that would impose more cost on the industry than that contained in the White House agreement.
North Korea frees South Korean worker after Hyundai official’s visit
The chairwoman of Hyundai Group went to Pyongyang to seek the man’s release after President Clinton’s successful trip gained the freedom of two American TV reporters.
By Ju-min Park and John M. Glionna
August 14, 2009
Reporting from Seoul – A 44-year-old South Korean worker held in North Korea since March was released Thursday during a visit to Pyongyang by a prominent South Korean corporate leader, authorities said.
The release came a week after former President Clinton traveled to the North Korean capital and secured pardons for two American television reporters who had been sentenced to 12 years of hard labor for illegally entering the country.
Chairwoman Hyun Jung-eun of Hyundai Group flew to Pyongyang on Monday to negotiate the release of her employee, a technician at a northern industrial complex jointly run by North and South Korea.