On Wednesday, Senator Bernie Sanders launched a new campaign for his planned Medicare for All legislation. Sanders’ bill is expected to be revealed next month.
The legislation comes on the heals of Republicans’ failure this week to repeal and replace Obamacare. Passing Medicare for All legislation could be a second huge victory for the American people.
As Sanders stated in an interview with NPR, “Bottom line is: if other countries around the world are providing quality care to all their people, we can do the same.”
The term “Medicare for All” is in reference to the public health care program for all Americans and will be a single payer system, meaning universal government-run health care. Sanders has been pushing this idea for health care since he campaign in the 2016 Democratic primaries.
The digital campaign was launched to encourage people to respond with ideas for the Medicare for All plan as well as to get people to become “citizen co-sponsors.”
Within 24 hours of sending an initial email to his supporters Sanders had raised $65,000 and received 19,000 responses.
American support for a government-run health care system is growing. A recent survey by the Pew Research Center found that 33% of Americans support a single-payer system, five points up from January 2017 and 12 points since March 2014. Among Democrats, 52% support single-payer, a number which has significantly risen since January in which 43% said they supported it.
Despite growing support, Sanders knows that the chance of actually passing the legislation in a Republican-controlled Congress or slim to non. However, introducing the idea is the first step and is bound to create support from politicians and citizens alike. Last time Sanders attempted to introduced similar legislation was in 2015, during which he could not convince even one person to co-sponsor the bill.
Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) have already publicly declared their support for a single-payer system.
Meanwhile Sanders and his team will continue their enormous ad campaign and speak personally with voters that might be unsure of the single-payer system in an attempt to dispel negative assumptions.
“We outspend all other countries on the planet and our medical spending continues to grow faster than the rate of inflation,” Sanders’ website says. “Creating a single, public insurance system will go a long way towards getting health care spending under control.”
You can view the entire plan for Medicare for All on Bernie Sanders’ website here.
You can add your name as a citizen co-sponsor of Medicare for All here.