Saturday, June 03, 2017

California State Senate Passes Medicare-For-All-- Conservatives Vow To Kill It In The Assembly


Thursday, the California state Senate passed Ricardo Lara's and Toni Atkins' Healthy California Act (S.B. 562), which, if it passes the Assembly and is signed by Governor Brown, will establish a state "Medicare For All" system of single-payer universal health coverage. It passed 23-14, corrupt conservative Democrats Ben Hueso (Chula Vista), Richard Roth (Riverside) and Richard Pan (Sacramento) refusing to vote for it and, worst of all, Steve Glazer (Orinda) voting with the GOP, as he often does. The bill now goes to the Assembly which will add taxes to pay for it and that means it will need a two-thirds vote in each chamber, a problem when some many corrupt corporate Democrats are on the take and are likely to join the Republicans in refusing to support anything that helps working families.

A new Tulchin Research poll finds the plan is supported by 70% of California voters, including strong majorities of Democrats, Independents and even Republicans. Trump and the Republicans in Congress are getting ready to strip health insurance from 24 million Americans-- including 5 million in California-- while more and more Americans have realized that the real solution to healthcare has always been single-payer (or Medicare-For-All). Paul Ryan and Kevin McCarthy have John Conyers' national Medicare-For-All Act, which now has 112 co-sponsors, bottled up in the House Energy and Commerce Committee where Greg Walden (R-OR) and Joe Barton (R-TX) are refusing to allow it to move forward despite overwhelming national support.

The latest study by the California Nurses Association finds that single-payer will save California $37 billion a year-- nearly $1,000 for every man, woman, and child in the state but corporate special interests and the Republican Party (+ the Democratic wing of the Republican Party, euphemistically called "the mods" by the cretinous Sacramento political press) are painting it as a fiscal loser. Of course for the special interests no more copays, no more premiums, no deductibles and the whole idea of health care for people, not for profit is a fiscal disaster, one that can't come soon enough! So they're screaming "socialized medicine," "bankruptcy" and "government takeover" while rending their clothes and lighting their hair on fire.
The California Nurses Association, the bill’s lead sponsor, has pushed the proposal hard, organizing demonstrations at the California Democratic Convention last month and promising to “primary” incumbent Democrats who don’t jump on board. On Wednesday, a study commissioned by the nurses concluded that Californians could save tens of billions of dollars annually under such a system through lowering of drug prices and elimination of administrative overhead.

Most California families and businesses, the University of Massachusetts study said, would pay less for health care than they do now, even with the new taxes, because they would no longer pay premiums, deductibles or co-pays.

A Senate committee analysis released last week, however, estimated that the state would have to raise $200 billion in revenue each year, which it said could be done through a 15 percent payroll tax.

...Lara acknowledged the bill was “a work in progress.” One of the many big questions left unanswered in the thin, 38-page proposal is whether the federal government would permit California to use existing Medicare funding for such a plan. The state also doesn’t know whether Congress will slash health care funding by repealing the Affordable Care Act.
The Republicans and the pernicious special interests feel there are enough conservative Democrats they've been able to buy off to stop the bill in the Assembly. We'll be watching.

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At 4:34 PM, Anonymous Hone said...

this is fantastic! Sure hope it passes.

At 11:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

CA and national Nurses Associations are the most radical political groups in the the US.

THEY should be given control of the DNC, or the Green Party.

John Puma

At 7:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pelosi and Feinstein are both from CA. Irony?

Can we get a dissection of the bill? Is it a replacement for all health insurance in CA or is it more like a PO where those on the margins that the Rs and Ds want to ratfuck (to give billionaires their tax cuts) get health care from the state?

Will CA residents still have to pay the medicare payroll tax? Would insurance companies in CA go poof (hopefully)? Does it address phrma?

If, as seems likely, the Rs and the corrupt feckless Ds spike this in assembly, will CA voters punish any of them? I mean, this is the question I've been asking since the '70s. Nixon got re-elected. Carter did not. Reagan did. Clinton did. cheney did. obamanation did. Good intentions get you sacked. It has seemed that the more corrupt and destructive someone is, the better their re-election fortunes are (see also: Pelosi, reid, scummer, hoyer...) and, for Rs, it really helps to be a potted plant.

It would really be a nice change if the CA voters actually punished corruption, stupidity and evil. They don't seem to do so for DC reps though.


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