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Sen. Bernie Sanders says he wants to help President Donald Trump with an overhaul of healthcare, just not one that looks like the GOP’s first attempt.
Asked by CNN’s Dana Bash on Sunday about the failure of the American Health Care Act, Sanders said he was planning to introduce his own healthcare bill that included a “Medicare-for-all” feature and would reach out to the president about it.
“Of course, Obamacare has serious problems: deductibles are too high, premiums are too high, the cost of healthcare is going up at a much faster rate than it should,” Sanders said. “Ideally, where we should be going is to join the rest of the industrialized world and guarantee healthcare to all people as a right. That’s why I’m going to introduce a Medicare-for-all, single-payer program.”
Trump himself has said multiple times that he wants a healthcare plan to cover “everybody.”
Sanders also said Trump should “come on board” with the plan.
Trump told reporters that he was willing to work with Democrats to revamp the healthcare system after the AHCA was pulled fom the House floor because of internal strife in the Republican Party that left leadership’s plan to repeal and replace Obamacare short of the votes needed to pass the House.
Sanders, an independent who caucuses with Democrats and ran for president as a Democrat, also took time to attack the AHCA.
“The bill that was defeated should have been defeated,” Sanders said. “It was a disaster piece of legislation, primarily designed to provide $300 billion to the top 2%, throw 24 million people off health insurance, raising premiums for older workers in a very very significant way. It was defeated, the American people wanted it defeated, and I’m glad we were able to accomplish that.”
The AHCA repealed taxes in Obamacare – officially known as the Affordable Care Act – that primarily fell on the wealthy. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that 24 million fewer Americans would have had health coverage under the AHCA than the current projection, and the AHCA’s tax credits were structured in a way that would have caused premiums for low-income and older people to increase significantly.