Where Dems stand on Sanders's single-payer bill

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPoll: Sanders leads Biden by 9 points in Iowa Poll: Biden leads in Iowa ahead of caucuses The Memo: Impeachment dominates final Iowa sprint MORE (I-Vt.) is set to release his long-awaited “Medicare for all” bill Wednesday afternoon with the backing of a number of prominent Democrats.

Sanders has championed single-payer healthcare for decades, but the idea is catching fire among Democrats following his strong run for the White House in 2016.

Several Democrats who could run for the White House in 2020 — a category that includes Sanders — are expected to appear at the bill’s unveiling Wednesday afternoon. The bill garnered 16 co-sponsors hours before it was set to be introduced.


Still, not everyone is on board with the Sanders plan. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), for instance, said Tuesday she is focused on protecting ObamaCare. 

Here’s where Senate Democrats stand so far:

Supports (16)

Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinSenators ask FDA to crack down on non-dairy milks, cheeses Senate fails to get deal to speed up fight over impeachment rules Lawmakers introduce bill to bolster artificial intelligence, quantum computing MORE (Wis.): Baldwin, who is up for reelection in 2018, will be a co-sponsor of the legislation. “With this reform, we would simplify a complicated system for families and reduce administrative costs for businesses. It would expand coverage to all the uninsured, make health care more affordable for working, middle-class families and reduce growing prescription drug costs for taxpayers,” Baldwin wrote in an op-ed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Richard Blumenthal (Conn.):
On Tuesday afternoon, Blumenthal tweeted: “Proud to announce my support for single-payer #MedicareForAll led by @SenSanders. Let's make healthcare a right, not a luxury.”

Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerSenate Dems to Pompeo: Comments about NPR reporter 'insulting and contemptuous' Black caucus in Nevada: 'Notion that Biden has all of black vote is not true' The Hill's 12:30 Report: House managers to begin opening arguments on day two MORE (N.J.): Booker will also sign on as a co-sponsor, and is another Democrat seen as possible 2020 contender. "This is something that’s got to happen. ObamaCare was a first step in advancing this country, but I won’t rest until every American has a basic security that comes with having access to affordable health care," Booker told the NJTV News Monday. 

Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenBill Press: Don't forget about Amy Key moments in the 2020 Democratic presidential race so far Al Franken mocks McConnell: 'Like listening to Jeffrey Dahmer complain about the decline of dinner party etiquette' MORE (Minn.): Franken called Sanders's proposal "a starting point" and "an important marker" toward the goal of universal coverage, while calling for "bipartisan policies that improve our current health care system" in the short term.


Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandGOP-Biden feud looms over impeachment trial Sanders defends vote against USMCA: 'Not a single damn mention' of climate change The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial MORE (N.Y.): Seen as possible 2020 presidential contender, Gillibrand announced Tuesday that she would co-sponsor Sanders’s bill. “Health care is a right, not a privilege. This week, I'll proudly join Senator @BernieSanders to co-sponsor Medicare for All,” she tweeted.

Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisBiden leads 2020 pack in congressional endorsements Harris on 2020 endorsement: 'I am not thinking about it right now' Panel: Is Kamala Harris a hypocrite for mulling a Joe Biden endorsement? MORE (Calif): Harris will also co-sponsor the legislation, she announced in a town hall in late August. "I intend to co-sponsor the 'Medicare for all' bill because it’s just the right thing to do," said Harris, another Democrat seen as having White House ambitions. "It's not just about what is morally and ethically right, it also makes sense just from a fiscal standpoint.”

Martin HeinrichMartin Trevor HeinrichDemocratic senator blasts 'draconian' press restrictions during impeachment trial Health care, spending bills fuel busy year for K Street Schumer introduces bill requiring GDP measure inequality MORE (N.M.): Heinrich announced Tuesday that he would co-sponsor the bill, saying, “It is time to recognize that health care is a human right and I believe that the best way to make that a reality in our nation is to build on what we all know works."

Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoDemocrats worry Trump team will cherry-pick withheld documents during defense Democrats urge Supreme Court to save consumer agency from chopping block Restlessness, light rule-breaking and milk spotted on Senate floor as impeachment trial rolls on MORE (Hawaii): She announced her support Tuesday, tweeting “I support universal, affordable, accessible and quality health care as a right, not a privilege. A single payer, Medicare for All system is a strong articulation of this principle, which is why I support this bill.” 

Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyBiden leads 2020 pack in congressional endorsements Senators ask FDA to crack down on non-dairy milks, cheeses Lawmaker wants Chinese news outlet to register as foreign agent MORE (Vt.): Sanders’s colleague from Vermont is also a co-sponsor of the legislation.


Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeySenate Dems to Pompeo: Comments about NPR reporter 'insulting and contemptuous' Hillicon Valley — Presented by Philip Morris International — Bezos phone breach raises fears over Saudi hacking | Amazon seeks to halt Microsoft's work on 'war cloud' | Lawmakers unveil surveillance reform bill Twitter tells facial-recognition app maker to stop collecting its data MORE (Mass.): Markey announced last week that he would cosponsor the bill. On Tuesday, he tweeted: “#Healthcare is a right, not a privilege!”

Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleySenate Dems to Pompeo: Comments about NPR reporter 'insulting and contemptuous' Environmentalists, Oregon senators oppose DOT increasing transport of natural gas by rail Senate Democrat says he is concerned intelligence community is 'bending' Soleimani presentations MORE (Ore.): Merkley, the only senator to endorse Sanders during the 2016 primary, will also co-sponsor the legislation, he announced Monday. “Right now, our health care system is incredibly complex, fragmented, and stressful. It would be terrific to have a simple, seamless system where, solely by virtue of living in America, you know that you will get the care you need." 

Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzDemocrats: McConnell impeachment trial rules a 'cover-up,' 'national disgrace' Overnight Defense: Book says Trump called military leaders 'dopes and babies' | House reinvites Pompeo for Iran hearing | Dems urge Esper to reject border wall funding request Senate Dems urge Esper to oppose shifting Pentagon money to border wall MORE (Hawaii): Schatz is also a cosponsor of the bill.

Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne Shaheen2020 forecast: A House switch, a slimmer Senate for GOP — and a bigger win for Trump Lewandowski decides against Senate bid Biden would consider Republican for VP 'but I can't think of one right now' MORE (N.H.): Shaheen announced her support on Wednesday, tweeting: "I've signed-on to the Medicare For All Act introduced by @SenSanders."

Tom UdallThomas (Tom) Stewart UdallIt is time for companies and governments to holistically tackle single-use plastics Citizens United decision weathers 10 years of controversy Overnight Defense: Foreign policy takes center stage at Democratic debate | House delivers impeachment articles to Senate | Dems vow to force new vote on Trump's border wall MORE (N.M.): In a statement released Tuesday, Udall announced he would co-sponsor the legislation. “I believe that health care is a human right, and that all New Mexicans — and all Americans — should be able to see a doctor when they’re sick."

Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenPoll: Sanders leads Biden by 9 points in Iowa Poll: Biden leads in Iowa ahead of caucuses The Memo: Impeachment dominates final Iowa sprint MORE (Mass.): Also considered a potential 2020 presidential candidate, Warren said last week that she would co-sponsor the legislation. "I believe it’s time to take a step back and ask: what is the best way to deliver high quality, low cost health care to all Americans?" Warren said in a statement.

Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseDemocrats urge Supreme Court to save consumer agency from chopping block Citizens United decision weathers 10 years of controversy Sanders defends vote against USMCA: 'Not a single damn mention' of climate change MORE (R.I.): Whitehouse said in a statement this week that he would co-sponsor the legislation. “We have come a long way under Obamacare, but I still hear from Rhode Island families and small business owners that health care costs are too high. I am committed to bringing down those costs while improving the quality of care for Rhode Islanders,” he said.

Undecided (5)

Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperAdvancing a bipartisan conservation legacy The Hill's 12:30 Report: Democrats turn to obstruction charge Trump's latest water policy exposes sharp divides MORE (Del.): The Delaware senator said the single-payer idea deserves a hearing. "Right now we're trying to focus on the main thing. And ... the main thing is to stabilize the exchanges. Do that now. The idea of 'Medicare for all,' the proposal from Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for week two of impeachment trial Trump defense team signals focus on Schiff Trump legal team offers brisk opening defense of president MORE and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidySenators opt to drink milk on Senate floor during impeachment trial Big Pharma looks to stem losses after trade deal defeat Trump trade deal faces uncertain Senate timeline MORE, these are ideas, big ideas ... those are the kinds of ideas that should have a full-blown hearing."

Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseySenate Democrats launch investigation into Trump tax law regulations Advocates call for ObamaCare open enrollment extension after website glitches The US needs to lead again on disability rights MORE Jr. (Pa.): When asked his thoughts on the bill, Casey said he hasn't yet seen it and would like hearings on the proposal. He said a "giant step forward" in increasing coverage — that could be implemented now — would be adding a public option to compete alongside private plans. Casey is up for reelection next year.


Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinDemocrats Manchin, Jones signal they're undecided on Trump removal vote Schiff sparks blowback with head on a 'pike' line Schiff closes Dems' impeachment arguments with emotional appeal to remove Trump MORE (W.Va.): Manchin told The Hill he thinks the idea of single-payer care should be explored, but wouldn't specifically commit to the Sanders bill. "Let it go through the committee, let it go through the process. I don't just know enough about it. I'm not signing on to a piece of legislation that I don't have any idea what it's going to do to the economy, to the access and to people's care."

Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerBolton book alleges Trump tied Ukraine aid freeze to Biden investigations: NYT Trump legal team offers brisk opening defense of president Impeachment has been a dud for Democrats MORE (N.Y.): The Senate minority leader says, "there are are many different bills out there. There are many good ones." At his biweekly press conference on Tuesday, Schumer declined to say if he would be signing onto Sanders's proposal. He noted that other Democratic senators have put forth health care bills: "We want to move the issue forward. We're looking at all of these."

Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenDemocrats step up pressure over witnesses after Bolton bombshell Fox's Napolitano: There is 'ample and uncontradicted' evidence supporting Trump's removal from office Sen. Van Hollen releases documents from GAO investigation MORE (Md.): He said he needs to examine the legislation once it's introduced. "I support making sure that we have a system of universal, affordable health care. There's going to be other proposals introduced. I've always supported moving in the direction of 'Medicare for all,' I've just got to look at the details," he told reporters Tuesday

Not endorsing (4)

Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineKaine: GOP senators should 'at least' treat Trump trial with seriousness of traffic court Senate Dems to Pompeo: Comments about NPR reporter 'insulting and contemptuous' Iran resolution supporters fear impeachment will put it on back burner MORE (Va.): Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGOP senator says idea that Ukraine interfered in US election is 'not a conspiracy theory' Cotton: Democrats are 'upset that their witnesses haven't said what they want them to say' Trump's troubles won't end with a Senate acquittal MORE’s former running mate said he would “rather open it up to more choices, not fewer.” Kaine told reporters that he favors adding a public option to the mix of health care insurance policies Americans can choose. He offered support for the introduction of the bill, saying “Look, we have to have all the ideas on the table, so we can flesh them out.”

Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillHow Citizens United altered America's political landscape #MidnightMoscowMitch trends amid criticism of McConnell's proposed impeachment trial rules The most expensive congressional races of the last decade MORE (Mo.): McCaskill, who is considered vulnerable in next year’s election, told reporters, “I think that particular proposal is premature.” Additionally, she said she supports letting people between the ages of 55 and 65 buy into Medicare and other public option ideas.

Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowSenate fails to get deal to speed up fight over impeachment rules The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial John Lewis to miss Martin Luther King Jr. Day event MORE (Mich.): Stabenow, who is up for reelection in 2018, told reporters she supports letting those 55 and older buy into Medicare.


Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterDemocrats cry foul over Schiff backlash Democrats feel political momentum swinging to them on impeachment Nadler gets under GOP's skin MORE (Mont.): Tester told reporters he won’t be supporting Sanders’s legislation. “I support fixing what we got because I think that’s more likely to happen.” Tester is up for reelection in 2018 in what’s likely to be a tight race.

– Sylvan Lane contributed.

Updated: Sept. 13 at 12:20 p.m.