Single-payer is coming

By Aristophanes


On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont, introduced a new bill for single-payer health care, a proposal he defends in The New York Times

Single-payer systems are so named because they provide universal health coverage with one entity, usually the national government, footing the bill. Many countries, including our northern neighbor, Canada, offer such programs, often paid with increased taxation. Multiple European nations operate hybrid models, which incorporate similar socialist elements.

Until now, the United States has resisted such measures. However, one of our country’s major political parties is on the brink of full commitment.

Several prominent Democratic figureheads have already promised their support for Sanders’ plan. The list includes a few household names:

  • Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey
  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
  • Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York
  • Sen. Kamala Harris of California
  • Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon

The turnaround is remarkable. Just last year, the Democratic nominee for president refused to endorse a “Medicare for All” proposal. Now, left-leaning presidential hopefuls are flocking to a version proposed by a man who isn’t even, technically speaking, a Democrat.

Further, a summer poll by Pew Research states that 52 percent of Democratic-leaning voters are in favor of a nationally run health system. This is an increase from previous years, and matches general results from other polling sources. It’s undeniable: the numbers highlight a steady, upward trend.

When the Democratic Party sweeps back into power, which it will, sooner or later, single-payer health care will be at the top of the coalition’s legislative priorities.

As the party seeks consolidation in the era of President Donald Trump, and is reminded of the bruising rebuke of last year’s pragmatically minded platform, more leaders may soon come to support the single-payer option.

If the next Democratic presidential nominee runs on a single-payer platform, he or she will have a defined ideal to compete against opposing plans. The lack of such a focus dogged the Hillary Clinton campaign, which faced the simple, if abhorrent, appeal of Trump’s “make America great again” message.

The country is quickly headed in the direction of a national, single-payer health care system. The only question is when.


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4 thoughts on “Single-payer is coming

  1. Reblogged this on The Most Revolutionary Act and commented:
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    The turnaround is remarkable. Just last year, the Democratic nominee for president refused to endorse a “Medicare for All” proposal. Now, left-leaning presidential hopefuls are flocking to a version proposed by a man who isn’t even, technically speaking, a Democrat.

    Like

  2. I’m finally starting to feel the hope for this that I did with legalization of marijuana. Ten years ago, I’m sure marijuana legalization, at least in the scope of country-wide legalization, seemed like such a long-shot. Now, I believe it’s only a matter or time. Ditto the arc of same sex marriage, although they are radically different topics.

    I’m finally, FINALLY starting to feel like universal health care, which I do believe everyone deserves, could be a reality for our country and the many, many folks who need it. I have a very basic understanding of the issue, but I’ve always understood that the deal with Europe is: you pay really high taxes, but pay nothing for health care (and probably a few other public services I’m forgetting, in addition to infrastructure and police and all that). Getting Americans to pay higher taxes (especially Republicans, and I hope I’m not radically oversimplifying the issue) is going to be difficult as hell. However, the stereotype of many Republicans (I’m thinking of alt-righters, not mainstream Republicans) are grossly overweight hill-billies pounding purple soda and eating malamars (sp?).

    THEY GON’ NEED IT!

    Like

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