After Senate’s Repeal Effort Fails, Sen. Bernie Sanders Again Pushes for Single Payer Health Care

By Melanie Arter | July 31, 2017 | 1:00pm EDT
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) (Screenshot of CNN video)

( – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) told CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that the Democrats will “absolutely” introduce single payer now that the Senate’s effort to repeal and replace Obamacare has failed.

“Absolutely. Of course we are,” Sanders said when asked whether he will introduce single payer. “We're just -- we're tweaking the final points of the bill, and we're figuring out how we can mount a national campaign to bring people together.


Sanders said the U.S. is “the only major country” that does not “guarantee health care for all people.”

He said the U.S. should “move in the direction of every other major country, guarantee health care to all people as a right, not a privilege.”

When asked why single payer was never implemented in California or Sanders’ home state of Vermont, where it would “seem to be a perfect test case,” Sanders said, “Well, this is -- politically, this is difficult, and by the way, in California, the debate is not over.

“It passed, I think, the Senate. It's now gone to the House, and that debate will continue,” he said. “Look, taking on the insurance companies and the drug companies, taking on Wall Street, taking on a lot of very powerful forces that make billions of dollars a year from the current health care system is not going to be easy.

“And it's not going to take place until millions of people get involved in this struggle and appreciate the fact that whether you're rich or whether you are poor, health care is a right,” he said.

Sanders said he believes that after serious discussion, “the American people will conclude that Medicare … is working now for people 65 or older. Let's expand it to everyone.”

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