Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) is finally going through with his long-awaited plan to push a single-payer health care bill though the Senate, reports The Daily Signal.
“‘Today, we begin the long and difficult struggle to end the international embarrassment of the United States being the only major country on earth not to guarantee health care to all its people,’ Sanders said in a statement.
‘At a time when millions of Americans do not have access to affordable health care, the Republicans, funded by the Koch brothers, are trying to take away health care from up to 32 million more,’ he added. ‘We have a better idea: guarantee health care to all people as a right, not a privilege, through a Medicare for All, single-payer health care program.’”
The bill was introduced on Sept 13, and proposes a marginal income tax rate of 40 percent for $250,000 to $500,000; 45 percent for $500,000 to $2 million; 50 percent for $2 million to $10 million; and 52 percent for incomes over $10 million.
With this new policy, Sanders is basically proposing a monopoly over the health finance and delivery systems which means there will no longer be any private health insurance and people will not be able to keep their current health insurance plans, said Robert Moffit, a senior fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s center for Health Policy Studies.
“In order to accomplish this objective, Congress is going to have to impose very heavy taxes,” Moffit said.
Moffit said that a problem with this plan is that if demand exceeds the budget, choices will have to be made, such as deciding who gets the health care and how they will receive it.
If the bill is passed it would create a governmental program which means it will go through congressional deal-makings and interventions, which Moffit explains is a “massive politicization of the system where almost every health care decision becomes a political decision.”
Republicans have been vocal about their disapproval of the Medicare for All Act, like Phil Novack, press secretary of Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said Cruz was “strongly opposed to a single-payer system that would put government in control of our health care.”
Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, said Americans will receive “inferior health care” if it is in the hands of the government.
“What we find is that when we hand other things over to the federal government, it very often makes a mess of them,” Lee said.
— Mike Lee (@SenMikeLee) September 13, 2017
There were 15 Democratic senators who introduced the legislation with Sanders including Sens. Al Franken, D-Minn.; Kamala Harris, D-Calif.; and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.
“If we’re dealing with it in the emergency room, it’s too little, too late and it’s too expensive,” Harris said in a press release. “Let’s give the taxpayers of the United States a better return on their investment, which means Medicare for All.”
Moffit agrees that this health care plan is a very sharp turn to the left as far as legislation goes and is a depart from any centrist or moderate thinking in the Democratic party.