‘How Do You Pay For That?’

Even Democrats Admit ‘We Could Never Afford’ Single-Payer ‘Medicare For All’ Proposals And The Astronomical Price Tags Have Halted Similar Plans At The State Level


Democrats On Single-Payer ‘Medicare For All’ Proposals: ‘How Do You Pay For That?’ It ‘Would Bankrupt Us’

HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): “… to convert to it? Thirty trillion dollars. Now, how do you pay for that?” (“Nancy Pelosi: The Rolling Stone Interview,” Rolling Stone, 2/27/2019)

REP. CHERI BUSTOS (D-IL), DCCC CHAIR: “I think the $33 trillion price tag for Medicare for all is a little scary.” (“Dem Campaign Chief: Medicare For All Price Tag 'A Little Scary,'” The Hill, 3/06/2019)

FORMER NYC MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG: “I think we could never afford that. We are talking about trillions of dollars…. [T]o replace the entire private system where companies provide health care for their employees would bankrupt us for a very long time.” (“Michael Bloomberg: Medicare-For-All 'Would Bankrupt Us For A Very Long Time,’” CNN, 1/29/2019)


“‘Single payer. Okay. Pass it. I’ll sign it. You pass it, I’ll sign it,’ [Gov. Andrew] Cuomo [D-NY] says.

But … would he want to sign it?

‘No, but no sane person will pass it,’ he says.

So he’s daring the legislature to pass it?

‘Oh no. If they pass it, I’ll sign it,’ he says.

Even though he thinks it’ll blow up the state budget?

‘Yeah, well, you’d double everybody’s taxes. You want to do that? Let’s go,’ he says.” (“Andrew Cuomo’s Case for 2020—No, Really,” The Atlantic, 3/03/2019)


Attempts To Implement Single-Payer Systems In States Were Abandoned As Democrat Leaders And Voters Realized They Were Unaffordable


In Bernie Sanders’ Vermont, The Democrat Governor Shuttered A Single-Payer Plan When He ‘Admitted What Critics Had Said All Along: He Couldn’t Pay For It’

“Vermont was supposed to be the beacon for a single-payer health care system in America. But now its plans are in ruins, and its onetime champion [Democrat] Gov. Peter Shumlin may have set back the cause…. Vermont under Shumlin became the most visible trailblazer. Until Wednesday, when the governor admitted what critics had said all along: He couldn’t pay for it.” (“Why Single Payer Died In Vermont,” Politico, 12/20/2014)

“[R]eality hit last month. Governor Peter Shumlin released a financial report that showed the cost of the program would nearly double the size of the state’s budget in the first year alone and require large tax increases for residents and businesses. Shumlin, a Democrat and long-time single-payer advocate, said he would not seek funding for the law, effectively tabling the program called Green Mountain Care.” (“Costs Derail Vermont’s Dream Of A Single-Payer Health Plan,” The Boston Globe, 1/25/2015)


California’s Democrat Assembly Speaker Scuttled A Single-Payer Bill Because ‘The Price Tag On Universal Health Care Is In, And It’s Bigger Than California’s Budget’

“The price tag is in: It would cost $400 billion to remake California’s health insurance marketplace and create a publicly funded universal health care system, according to a state financial analysis released Monday. California would have to find an additional $200 billion per year, including in new tax revenues, to create a so-called ‘single-payer’ system, the analysis by the Senate Appropriations Committee found.” (“The Price Tag On Universal Health Care Is In, And It’s Bigger Than California’s Budget,” The Sacramento Bee, 5/22/2017)

“The prospects of a government-run health care system in California dimmed Friday when the leader of the state Assembly announced he doesn't plan to take up the single-payer bill this year. Speaker Anthony Rendon called the bill ‘woefully incomplete.’ … The bill … lays out a plan for a government-run health system in California, but it doesn't include a way to pay for it. Rendon said the bill also doesn't adequately address delivery of care and cost.” (“California Assembly Leader Shelves Single-Payer Health Plan,” The Associated Press, 6/23/2017)

FORMER GOV. JERRY BROWN (D-CA): ‘Where Do You Get The Extra Money? … I Don’t Even Get ... How Do You Do That?’

“[Gov. Jerry] Brown [D-CA], who pledged to leave the state on firm financial footing, said earlier this year that he doesn’t understand the logic behind pushing another system like single-payer while Obamacare is imperiled. ‘Where do you get the extra money?’ he asked. ‘This is the whole question. I don’t even get ... how do you do that? ‘This is called “the unknown by means of the more unknown.” In other words, you take a problem, and say “I am going to solve it by something that’s ... a bigger problem,” which makes no sense.’” (“Why Universal Health Care Died In California,” The Sacramento Bee, 6/27/2017)


Colorado Voters ‘Resoundingly’ Rejected A Single-Payer Plan That Would Have Required $25 Billion In Tax Hikes

“Colorado voters rejected a ballot measure that would have created a first-in-the-nation single-payer health insurance system, a significant setback for progressive proponents of universal health care. Tuesday’s defeat of Amendment 69 was decisive, as predicted.” (“Single-Payer Health Care Dream Dies In Colorado,” The Huffington Post, 11/08/2016)

  • “Colorado’s Amendment 69 would have largely replaced the existing private or employer-provided health coverage in the state with a single-payer model … But voters rejected it resoundingly, with 80 percent voting against it.… It would have been funded by a 10 percent payroll tax that would garner an estimated $25 billion, but independent analysis suggested that amount wouldn’t be enough to cover operating expenses. The program was projected to have a $38 billion budget in its first year, overshadowing the state’s by 40 percent.” (“Ballot Initiatives: Voters Reject Calif. Drug Pricing Measure; Colo. Single-Payer System,” Kaiser Health News, 11/09/2016)



Related Issues: Health Care