"Medicare For All" is a policy that has been circulating across the political realm ever since Bernie Sanders proclaimed that healthcare was a right in 2016, however, there seems to a lot of confusion as to what exactly Medicare For All entails. Many of the 2020 candidates running have expressed interest in M4A, but have either walked back that support or released a plan that is what I call "MFAINO" or "Medicare For All In Name Only." Here, we'll be breaking down each candidate who supports Medicare For All and what each of those policies entails.
Bernie Sanders' Medicare For All proposal eradicates the private health insurance industry and expands the current Medicare system (which is currently only for those age 65+) to everyone. This plan will also allow the government to negotiate with the pharmaceutical companies which force Americans to pay sometimes 10 times the price for the drugs they need (this is the case for insulin). Therefore, every taxpaying American will be guaranteed healthcare and not be forced to go without the drugs or care they need, bypassing the bureaucracy of profit-seeking private insurance and pharmaceutical industries.
The common question is: how will we pay for it? To begin, there will obviously be a tax hike on the top tax bracket, which received one of the largest cuts in history under the Trump administration, but there will also be a tax increase on middle-class families. Don't freak out though, this tax increase will be minimal compared to the amount that each person pays for healthcare in deductibles, premiums, and co-pays. Bernie's version also guarantees a woman the right to a safe abortion.
Warren's healthcare plan is not yet posted on her website, but she co-signed on to Bernie's Medicare For All bill and acknowledged that in her plan, she would eradicate private insurance.
While Harris also signed on to Bernie's bill, her recently unveiled proposal for Medicare For All has a few differences. Harris believes that there is a role for the private insurance industry and that they should be allowed to offer private Medicare plans, similar to what already happens now with insurers such as SilverScripts. Not only that, but Senator Harris claims that there will be no tax increase on the middle class for this bill.
Pete's plan is known as "Medicare for All Who Want It," which stresses that those who want to buy into Medicare can do so. This is also known as a public option and isn't really Medicare For All. It allows people to spend money like they would a private insurer to gain access to Medicare but keeps all of the corruption of private insurers. The plan also presents no path to eradicate the private insurance industry.
You'll notice that I didn't mention Joe Biden anywhere. That's because he doesn't believe in Medicare For All, or that every person is entitled to healthcare.
Regarding my personal opinion, I believe Bernie's plan will be the best for everyone, and not only that, but he is the most genuine, reliable person to get it done. Why is that? Bernie has been advocating for a national healthcare system since the 1980s. When a president is taking on the healthcare lobby, which has enormous power over the government, this president must be willing to stand up to the very wealthy special interests, and Bernie has displayed that he will through his entire political career.
Currently, America is lagging behind in just about every health statistic. In terms of the largest one, life expectancy, the US is dead last when compared with similar countries. How do we change this? For starters, in the richest country in the world, nobody should be wondering how they're going to pay for the insulin they need, or if they can even afford to go to the doctor to receive the care they need. We accomplish that through a no-nonsense Medicare For All bill that wipes the for-profit healthcare industry off the map. These companies are not in the business of helping people, they are in the business of making money, and as long as that persists, people will continue to die younger than all other developed nations in the US.
A real Medicare For All system can fix that. That's why I'm 100% behind Bernie's plan.