Democratic presidential contender Bernie SandersBernie SandersWhite House: Window for finalizing sweeping budget package 'closing' Jayapal says tuition-free community college 'probably won't' be in spending plan Progressives see budget deal getting close after Biden meeting MORE is kicking back at claims made by rival Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump defends indicted GOP congressman GOP lawmaker says he expects to be indicted over FBI investigation Why it's time for conservatives to accept the 2020 election results and move on MORE’s daughter Chelsea Clinton, who said at a campaign event on Tuesday that Sanders wants to scrap ObamaCare.
Speaking on CNN moments after the State of the Union address on Tuesday night, Sanders said Chelsea Clinton has not read his healthcare plan, and called her claims that he wants to get rid of ObamaCare and “dismantle” Medicare and private insurance “absolutely wrong.”
"Unfortunately, I have to say, as much as I admire Chelsea, she didn't read the plan,” the Vermont senator said. “What she should know is that we’re the only major country on Earth that doesn’t guarantee healthcare to all people as a right, and yet we end up spending far more per capita on healthcare as do the people of any other nation.”
Sanders, who voted for ObamaCare and helped write some of it, said that under his Medicare For All plan, everyone would have health insurance and middle-class families would save thousands of dollars.
He disputed the notion, put forward by Chelsea Clinton, that his plan would give outsized influence to state governors, a majority of whom are Republicans.
“She is absolutely wrong,” Sanders said. “This is a plan that works in 50 states in this country, whether you have conservative Republicans or progressive Democrats. It's a national program.”
The Clinton campaign has expanded its attacks against Sanders from gun control to include healthcare as the Vermont Independent has surged in polls of early-voting states and made gains in national surveys.
Chelsea Clinton, who recently began taking on a more visible role in her mother’s presidential campaign, took those attacks to a campaign rally in New Hampshire on Tuesday, where she said Sanders was looking to get rid of the president’s signature legislative achievement to make way for a single-payer system.
“I worry if we give Republicans Democratic permission to do that, we'll go back to an era — before we had the Affordable Care Act — that would strip millions and millions and millions of people off their health insurance,” Chelsea Clinton said.
”I don’t want to live in a country that has an unequal healthcare system again,” she continued. “So I don’t want to empower Republican governors to take away Medicaid, to take away health insurance for low-income and middle-income working Americans. And I think very much that’s what Sen. Sanders plan would do.”
Hillary Clinton defended her daughter’s remarks Wednesday on "Good Morning America."
“You know, I adore my daughter and I know what she is saying,” the former secretary of State said. "Because if you look at Sen. Sanders’s proposals going back nine times in Congress, that’s exactly what he proposed — to take everything we currently know as healthcare, Medicare, Medicaid, the CHIP program, private insurance and now the Affordable Care Act, and roll it together.”