Target: Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders
Goal: Gratitude for your rejection of Big Pharma’s money.
Presidential nominee Bernie Sanders rejected campaign financing from the notorious pharmaceutical CEO who drastically raised the price of life saving drugs. Sanders’ campaign spokesman Michael Briggs stated, “we are not keeping the money from this poster boy for drug company greed,” and instead gave the donation to a health clinic. Presidential races have been bought out by corporate interests who expect favors in return, usually at the cost of the public. The refusal of Big Pharma’s money shows Sanders’ seriousness about reforming campaign financing and standing up to corporate greed.
Martin Shkreli, the CEO of Turing Pharmaceutical, made headlines after he raised the price of Daraprim, the only drug available for a rare parasitic infection, from $18 to $750 a pill. This type of price gouging is a key issue Sanders has taken up with Big Pharma during his campaign. Sanders launched a congressional investigation into the price hike and publically condemned the company. Shkreli made his campaign donation in hopes of gaining a meeting with the candidate, after multiple prior requests were refused. Corporations buying candidates’ time and support is a common occurrence in presidential races.
Shkreli made the maximum individual contribution of $2,700, which Sanders’ campaign rejected once they realized where it had come from. Shkreli’s drug price increase cut off a life saving treatment to AIDs patients, so Sander’s decided to donate Shkreli’s money to an AIDs clinic in Washington. Shkreli’s decision to raise a life saving drug by 4,000 percent shows his greed and limited interests, damaging qualities that should stay out of the White House.
Sanders has already made history by showing it’s possible to raise enough money to run for the presidency through individual contributions, without having to rely on corporate shell outs. Sanders strengthened his unprecedented integrity in campaign financing through his refusal of Shkreli’s money. Thank the Senator for his leadership in campaign finance reform and for denying the CEO’s bribe money.
Dear Senator Sanders,
The American people are sick of candidates preaching for corporate reform and then taking those same corporations’ money. Financing your campaign through individual contributions is inspirational and proof that the presidency doesn’t have to be a billionaire’s race. Your refusal to accept Martin Shkreli’s donation shows your integrity in the fight against Big Pharma. Shkreli’s price gouging of life saving drugs is inexcusable and I’m relieved to hear you won’t be taking his money or granting his meeting request.
Standing up to this CEO and hedge fund manager is a powerful message to Big Money that says they can’t buy your influence. Politics in America has been corrupted for too long and it’s time to stop allowing money to control the system. Rejecting Shkreli’s bribe money should set an example for other candidates who speak out against Big Money’s corruption.
I wanted to thank you for starting the congressional investigation into Shkreli’s price gouging, for publicly criticizing it, and for denying his requests for a meeting. I am grateful that you rejected his money for your campaign and instead used it as a donation to the community that his price gouging hurt.
[Your Name Here]