Sanders town hall audience cheers after Fox News host asks if they'd support 'Medicare for All'

The audience at a Fox News town hall erupted in cheers and applause when asked by moderator Bret Baier if they would support Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersButtigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' Buttigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' The generational divide of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party MORE's (I-Vt.) "Medicare for All" proposal.

"I want to ask the audience a question here. ... How many are willing to transition to what the senator says, a government-run system?" Baier asked before the crowd burst into cheers.   

The question comes a week after Sanders introduced updated Medicare for All legislation in the Senate. 

His proposed bill would largely eliminate private insurance and institute a single-payer system managed by the government. 

The updated version would also include coverage for long-term care, such as nursing homes, which is  not covered by Medicare currently. Home- and community-based care would also be covered.

A number of other 2020 Democratic candidates, including Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThe generational divide of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA MORE (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenJulián Castro defends going on Fox: I'm focused on 'the people out there watching' Julián Castro defends going on Fox: I'm focused on 'the people out there watching' O'Rourke unveils plan to support women, minority-owned businesses MORE (D-Mass.), have endorsed Sanders's legislation.

ADVERTISEMENT

The White House blasted Sanders's proposal, however, adding to its past criticism of single-payer plans. 

Press secretary Sarah HuckabeeSarah Elizabeth SandersFive memorable moments from Sarah Sanders at the White House Five memorable moments from Sarah Sanders at the White House Sean Spicer says he would not return as White House press secretary if Trump asked him MORE Sanders called the plan a "total government takeover of health care that would actually hurt seniors, eliminate private health insurance for 180 million Americans, and cripple our economy and future generations with unprecedented debt."

Republican leaders have also blasted the bill, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellElection security bills face GOP buzzsaw Election security bills face GOP buzzsaw Overnight Defense: Trump doubles down on claim Iran attacked tankers | Iran calls accusations 'alarming' | Top nuke official quietly left Pentagon | Pelosi vows Congress will block Saudi arms sale MORE (R-Ky.) saying it won't happen under a GOP-controlled Senate.

Despite criticism, a number of polls have shown both Democratic and Republican voters support Medicare for All. One such poll conducted by The Hill in October showed a majority of Republicans supported single-payer health care. Another poll conducted in January showed that 56 percent of American voters supported such an insurance system.

The video of Sanders on Fox quickly gained attention online Monday, with many pointing to the applause and past polling as examples of support among even conservatives for Medicare for All.

Sanders agreed to a Tax Day town hall on the network, moderated by the "Special Report" anchor Baier and "The Story" anchor Martha MacCallum.

In March, Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez announced that the network would be barred from hosting any of the party's primary debates. Democratic presidential candidates are not precluded from appearing on Fox News for interviews or town halls, however.