Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all'

Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all'
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownOvernight Defense: Guardsman to testify Lafayette Square clearing was 'unprovoked escalation' | Dems push for controversial Pentagon nominee to withdraw | Watchdog says Pentagon not considering climate change risks to contractors Democrats urge controversial Pentagon policy nominee to withdraw Chamber of Commerce, banking industry groups call on Senate to pass corporate diversity bill MORE (D-Ohio) on Sunday called for expanding Medicare to people who are 50 years and older rather than pushing for "Medicare for all," a popular option for many potential Democratic 2020 nominees. 

Brown, who is considering running for president and who has said Medicare for all isn't practical, said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union" that he wants to "help people now." His proposal would create a voluntary buy-in to Medicare for people who are 50 and older.

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"I want to expand Medicare to 50," he added. "Now, if we get enough people, we will see a lot of people get in — in that plan, 58-year-olds and 62-year-olds that have lost their insurance, lost their jobs. We will see the success of that, and that will end up continuing to broaden and expand coverage for so many Americans."

To provide coverage to people under 50 years old, Brown called for fixing "the problems with the Affordable Care Act."

"I want to help people now, and helping people now is building on the Affordable Care Act, not — not repealing ObamaCare, which is what they suggest," he added. "It's making sure we fix the consumer protections for pre-existing conditions."

Several other prominent senators who are running or considering running for the Democratic presidential nomination have thrown their support behind Medicare for all, including Bernie SandersBernie SandersOn The Money: Pessimism grows as coronavirus talks go down to the wire | Jobs report poised to light fire under COVID-19 talks | Tax preparers warn unemployment recipients could owe IRS Senators introduce bill to block Trump armed drone sale measure Sanders offers bill to tax billionaires' wealth gains during pandemic MORE (I-Vt.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisBiden VP race is highly fluid days before expected pick Harris, Ocasio-Cortez push climate equity bill with Green New Deal roots Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic MORE (D-Calif.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBiden VP race is highly fluid days before expected pick Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Senate Democrats push to include free phone calls for incarcerated people in next relief package MORE (D-Mass.), Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerSenate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Senate Democrats push to include free phone calls for incarcerated people in next relief package Ex-USAID employee apologizes, denies sending explosive tweets MORE (D-N.J.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandSanders offers bill to tax billionaires' wealth gains during pandemic Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Progressives soaring after big primary night MORE (D-N.Y.).

Brown also said that Medicare for all is difficult and suggested it would get in the way of his goal of helping people now.

"I think Medicare for all will take a while. And it's difficult. And it's selling it to people who now have insurance that would have to — they would have their insurance plans canceled and move into a government plan," he said.

"I think that's difficult," Brown continued. "I want to help people now. That's why you do Medicare at 50."