On Thursday, the 2nd nights the very first Democratic primary debate, 10 presidential hopefuls took happens and health issues became an early flashpoint.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) opened the controversy calling health care a “human right” – which was echoed by a number of other candidates – and saying “we have to pass a ‘Medicare for All,’ single-payer system” – that was not.
Just as on Wednesday night, moderators asked candidates who would support abolishing private insurance under a single-payer system. Again, only two candidates – this time Sanders and California Sen. Kamala Harris – raised their hands.
Former V . p . Joe Biden also jumped on health care, saying Americans “need to possess insurance that's covered, and they can afford.”
But he offered another look at how you can achieve the goal, saying the quickest way would be to “build on Obamacare. To build on which we did.” Also, he drew a line within the sand, promising to oppose any Democrat or Republican who tried to take down Obamacare.
Candidates including South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Ny Sen. Kristen Gillibrand and Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet offered their assumes universal coverage, each underscoring the significance of a transition from the current system and suggesting that a public option approach, something which allows people to buy into a program like Medicare, would provide a “glide path” to the ultimate objective of universal coverage. Gillibrand noted that she ran on this type of proposal in 2005. (This is true.)
Meanwhile, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper used the problem of Medicare for those to say that it is vital that you not allow Republicans to color the Democratic Party as socialist but also to claim their own successes in implementing coverage expansions to reach “near-universal coverage” in Colorado. PolitiFact examined this claim and found it Mostly True.
“You don’t need big government to complete big things. I understand that because I’m the one person up here who’s actually done the large progressive things everyone else is talking about,” he explained.
But still, while candidates were quick to make their differences clear, not every one of their claims fully stood as much as scrutiny.
We fact-checked some of those remarks.
Sanders: “President Trump, you’re not being bold working families when you attempt to throw 32 million people from the healthcare they have.”
This is among Sanders' favorite lines, however it falls short of giving the full story of the Republican effort to repeal and replace Obamacare. We rated an identical claim Half True.
Scrapping the Affordable Care Act would be a key campaign promise for President Mr . trump. In 2021, as the Republican-led Congress struggled to deliver, Trump tweeted “Republicans must REPEAL failing Obamacare now and work on a brand new health care insurance option which will start from a clean slate.”
The Congressional Budget Office estimated that would result in 32 million more people without insurance by 2026. However, many part of that 32 million might have chosen to not buy insurance due to the end of the baby mandate, which would happen under repeal. (It happened anyway, once the 2021 tax law repealed the fine for the individual mandate.)
In the end, full repeal didn't happen. Instead, Trump was just in a position to zero out the fines for those who did not have insurance. Coverage has eroded. The latest survey shows about 1.3 million individuals have lost insurance since Trump took office.
Bennet, meanwhile, used his time for you to attack Medicare for All on the feasibility standpoint.
Bennet: “Bernie mentioned the taxes that we would have to pay – because of those taxes, Vermont rejected Medicare for All.”
This is true, although it can use some context.
Vermont's effort to pass through a state-based single-payer health plan – that the state legislature approved this year – officially fell flat in December 2021. Financing the program ultimately would have required an 11.5% payroll tax on all employers, plus raising the income tax by as much as 9.5%. The governor at the time, Democrat Peter Shumlin, declared this politically untenable.
That said, some analysts suggest other political factors may have played a role, too – for instance, fallout after the state launched its Affordable Care Act health insurance website, which faced technical difficulties.
Nationally, when voters are told Medicare for All could cause higher taxes, support declines.
And a point was made by author Marianne Williamson concerning the nation's high burden of chronic disease.
Williamson: “So many Americans have unnecessary chronic illnesses – so much more compared to other countries.”
There is evidence for this, a minimum of for older Americans.
A November 2021 study through the Commonwealth Fund discovered that 68% of american citizens 65 and older had several chronic conditions, and an additional 20% had one chronic condition.
No other country studied – the uk, New Zealand, Sweden, Norway, France, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria or Canada – had a higher rate of older residents with a minimum of two chronic conditions. The percentages ranged from 33% in the uk to 56% in Canada.
An earlier study published in the journal Health Affairs in 2007 discovered that “for many of the most costly chronic conditions, diagnosed disease prevalence and treatment rates were higher in the United States than in an example of Countries in europe in 2004.”