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Poll: Seniors back U.S. drug-price bargaining

Seniors strongly support letting the federal government negotiate drug prices on behalf of Medicare beneficiaries, a poll suggests.

Currently, insurers do that negotiating on behalf of their customers, or they hire somebody to do it for them. But about 81 percent of seniors want to let the government use its buying power to negotiate drug prices, including 67 percent who said they strongly favor such negotiations, the Kaiser Family Foundation reported Friday.

Only 15 percent opposed or strongly opposed government negotiations. House Democrats plan to introduce legislation in January that would require the government to negotiate on behalf of seniors and the disabled. The Senate appears more lukewarm to the idea, and the Bush administration opposes it.

The poll also indicated widespread support for letting Americans buy medicine imported from Canada.

GRANTS PASS, ORE.

Vandals' act led man down path to death

A San Francisco man who got stranded with his family in the snowy wilderness had taken a wrong turn in the car down a logging road that is normally blocked by a gate, but vandals had cut the lock, authorities said Friday. James Kim, 35, was found dead in a mountain creek Wednesday, two days after his wife and their two daughters were rescued.

Elsewhere

ARLINGTON, VA.: Several tons of freshly poured concrete collapsed from the roof of a high-rise construction site Friday, injuring 16 workers on the floor below.

PHOENIX: A serial rapist was sentenced to 50 years in prison and began to sob after listening to some of his 13 victims testify about how the attacks had traumatized them. David B. Wilson Jr., 33, pleaded guilty in a plea agreement to 13 felony counts of sexual assaults or attempted assaults in 2004 and 2005.

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