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'The Time for Medicare for All Has Come': Jayapal Unveils Visionary Bill to Remake US Healthcare System

'The Time for Medicare for All Has Come': Jayapal Unveils Visionary Bill to Remake US Healthcare System

Jake Johnson, staff writer, Jon Queally, staff writer

In a historic step toward replacing America's uniquely expensive and deadly for-profit healthcare system with a humane program that would leave no one behind, Rep.


Simple Zen-like contemplation reveals that it should be the effort involved in providing health care rather than the money associated with it. The money system is tainted. Effort is effort. Yes, it must be rewarded, but Medicare for All could do this in a much more transparent and egalitarian manner than that provided by the “health” “care” “insurance” industrial complex. Let’s win this war once and for all and join the civilized world on this matter. Roads, schools, food and health security issues, infrastructure construction and maintenance, etc. should always be the backbone of the socialized part of the economy that undergirds the capitalism that provides the gizmos that keep us entertained. It is not an either/or choice and has never been one. It is a matter of degree. And we are in desperate need of more socialism (humanity) at this point in time.


FDR had the same type of resistance when he introduced Social Security.

It was hand to hand combat in the trenches to get this humanitarian idea through congress over the strenuous objections of the Republicans.

The time has come to challenge the Greedy Heartless Profiteering members of our community.

The time has come for America to become a community of brotherly love and not allow our neighbors to die or go bankrupt because they could not afford the obscene expenditures associated with Health Care.

Sorry private Health Insurers it is time you stop making billions of dollars from our fellow Americans who cannot afford insurance premiums because your CEO is making millions of dollars for themselves and their stockholders.

It is time to eliminate PROFIT from Healthcare.


Eliminating the health insurance companies is a good place to start. There is no doubt, however, that people will still want to buy supplemental insurance, but by not allowing the insurance companies to exist in the first proposal, there will be room for negotiation unlike Obama who always gave away half the store before negotiations with the Republicans began.

However, when I see the bill I will be wondering where the doctors and hospitals will come from. Currently, the high price of medical care is protected by limiting the number of admissions to medical schools and for-profit private hospitals. That is why many Americans go to foreign medical schools like those in Granada. We need to drastically increase the number of primary care physicians.

That could be accomplished by copying Brazil where any person who qualifies for medical school can get government help to pay if he or she works at a public hospital for 5 years before going into private practice. In the US, there is a shortage of public hospitals since many originally public institutions have been taken private over the past decades.

As part of any plan, we should also be building and reacquiring, by eminent domain if necessary, new public hospitals (that perform ALL services allowed under federal law) and formerly public hospitals taken private for profit. Now that’s comprehensive healthcare reform.


I’ve never understood why small businesses weren’t on board with government funded health care. It would mean that THEY didn’t have to provide it, saving them all kinds of money.


It’s about fucking time the US got in step with the rest of the world where most of the countries have had some form of “single payer” healthcare for decades. Canada since 1960, the UK just after WWII, Germany BEFORE WWII. All polls on this question have majorities that want it. I’m so god damn sick and tired of constantly hearing “the richest country in history” and other such shit, GET IT DONE.


One thing you have to remember that many companies don’t offer health ins at all. Back in 1964 when I started working almost all companies, even small mom & pop co’s, offered FREE health insurance to their employees. It’s the insurance companies and big PHRMA that kept increasing their prices that eventually companies started to “offer” insurance to their employees where they had to pay a “share” of the coverage. Now, a lot of companies don’t even offer it to employees because of the bloated cost. What I’m saying is that over the years it has actually gotten worse having a “private” system of health insurance.


The Facts are: for Seniors, or young Seniors like me who were forced to join the Medicare System, well know it’s a confusing Mess and rigged for the Insurerers and Drug Companies. The Insurers make Side deals with Labs, Hospitals and Doctors, while these deals are a disgrace for decent patient care. Prices also vary by Zip code. Good luck finding a doctor if you live in a decent location. Most people choose Advantage Plans with huge out of pocket costs with a zero Premiums, so they get you on the back end. Since most facilities and doctors may accept these plans, they have not actually signed contracts with the major insurers like United, so you are considered “ Out of Network” and pay more for everything. The current Medicare is not the same as my parents or grandparents had. It’s horrible! Medical bills are the number one reason people go bankrupt! I’m hoping a new program an be put into law ASAP, as the Insurers are literally getting away with murder


“the congresswoman emphasized that a mass mobilization of ordinary people across the nation will be necessary to compete with and ultimately overcome Medicare for All’s deep-pocketed opponents.”

This, of course, is key - not only medical organizations and the medical insurance industry will be pouring money into campaigns opposing it, but the political right wing and the dominant right liberal half of the Democrat Party will be working hand-in-hand with them against it - with media largely behind them.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: the way to reach the masses of people who will support this - now not mobilized, now not organized, now more likely to be exposed to the above anti-health care for all propaganda - is to create an organization like the one below, but to politicize it: Provide basic primary care, like RAM does; but, at the same time, have featured speakers (and one-on-one meetings w/health providers prior to care), to educate - both on healthcare and on the forces opposing it - mobilize, and register them to vote.

To elaborate again: no knocking on doors; RAM gets thousands of low income, uninsured or underinsured, suffering people that come hundreds of miles and sleep in their car for days waiting for care. They are exactly the army of the low income that is not hooked into a mass movement and that often does not vote. And the health fairs where people gathered would, by themselves, constitute a primary site of healthcare mobilization and engagement for the low income people who came to them - they could learn and feel their power at them.

And see also:


Johnson sez:
“… the Partnership for America’s Health Care Future—a coalition formed by leading pharma and insurance interests …”

Minor typo there. Should be the Partnership for America’s Wealth Care Future.


I had read an article where a person in the USA claimed that it would be cheaper for him and his wife to retire to a room at a Holiday Inn than at a nursing home. I thought this hyperbole until I looked up the stats myself and he was correct. The average MONTHLY cost for Nursing homes in the USA is around 6000$. There is little room for relief here if one deemed poor. In fact they have rule down there that before the State will move in to help all of the individuals personal assets had to be spent on care first.

Here in Canada those costs are about half of what charged in the USA with a bit more in the way of help from Governments but it still way too high as far as I am concerned.

Governments in Canada like to point to how bad it is in the USA when proclaiming the health care system here “good enough”. If something like this does happen in the USA they would no longer be able to use that as an out.


If by small you still mean 50 or more full time employees (less and there is no mandate to provide insurance) then I can only assume their reluctance is due to the uncertainty of financing. How much payroll tax increase? How about sales tax, income tax or tax on business profit? I’ve made this point many times that we need a simple web based calculator for individuals so they can check if their overall expenses including taxes are going up or down and how much. We need the same for business.

I look forward to reading and discussing the new bill. This would have been a perfect time to start a sticky thread which could be a ‘story’ that simply links to the bill and keep it near the top of the page. It would get thousands of comments eventually so a little savvy programming is required but it is very doable. Instead we will get a dozen stories on the same topic with comments spread across them. If you feel the same, email CD with your request. @dpearl and I have.

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LBJ had the same resistance when he was pushing Medicare in 1965 that was intended to cover all Murkins, just as single payer had recently been enacted in Canada. LBJ ended up compromising and limiting Medicare to those age 65 and older, admonishing Congress to expand it as he was signing the legislation. 54 years later Congress may finally be hearing that request.


54 yeas later, it’s turning into a common-sense demand.


Before the 1970’s drugs were actually cheap and one of the reasons employers offered health insurance in lieu of raises. After that time–2 US senators (can’t recall their names) were successful in allowing university labs to first patent their discoveries and then sell these patents to drug manufacturing plants thus setting us up for extortion in drug prices.


The Bayh-Dole Act. Birch Bayh and Bob Dole.


Paul, I will forward your comment to the VT branch of PNHP. I suggested we challenge the AMA, Big Pharma, insurance co. to public debates. We will be focusing on reaching various groups the May 6 event in Burlington will be to educate seniors. I have advocated in reaching low income people to them. Thanks for your post.

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Blessings on your head for that!

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Hey, Giovanna-Lepore,

I know you’ve been positive about this idea I’ve periodically posted before - I just now forwarded a letter with a version of the above post and a longer, more organized PDF of the idea to PNHP’s current president, Adam Gaffney. Plus spoke w/someone there about the idea, calling attention to my e-letter, and asking someone there to get back to me to talk about it.

Yea! If you like the idea, call for it though the VT branch of PNHP - I certainly like the idea of debates. Only thing I would add is that such a means of persuasion will be strengthened by a burgeoning mass movement of becoming-enfranchised citizens making ‘unreasonable’ demands.

Funny, but the ‘unreasonable’ can suddenly become ‘inevitable’ when enough people are behind it…

In Solidarity…

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You’ll also need to challenge the various dental associations and societies, such as the American Dental Association, which have limited the number of U.S. dental schools; and, have kept dentistry prices in the stratosphere. They are going to fight like hell. Because dentistry is so lucrative a profession, children of dentists no longer have an advantage when it comes to dental school admission. Ordinary crowns cost around $1800 in the U.S.; but only a couple hundred dollars overseas. An implant with a crown goes for around $5,000 in the U.S.; and, though, after the implant abutment is in place, the dentist has to merely take impressions for the lab (there’s no tooth prep), the crown still costs $1800, where most of that is dentist markup, not lab cost. - I’ve been amazed by the number of people who have told me of family, friends, and coworkers who have traveled overseas for their dental work. Almost all of these people have relatives or close contacts overseas who have made such trips less onerous. Unfortunately, not all of us have such contacts.