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Where Dems stand on Sanders's single-payer bill

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersAmazon workers have spoken — are progressives listening? What's really behind Joe Biden's far-left swing? It's time to declare a national climate emergency 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.

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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 BaldwinMary Trump joining group that supports LGBTQ+ female candidates Johnson says leaving office after 2022 'probably my preference now' Democrats push Biden to include recurring payments in recovery package 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 BookerThe first Southern state legalizes marijuana — what it means nationally Top Democrat calling for expansion of child care support When it comes to the Iran nuclear deal, what's a moderate Democrat to do? 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 Franken#MeWho? The hypocritical silence of Kamala Harris The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Senate Dems face unity test; Tanden nomination falls Gillibrand: Cuomo allegations 'completely unacceptable' 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.

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Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Gillibrand2024 GOP White House hopefuls lead opposition to Biden Cabinet Manhattan law firm named as lead in Cuomo impeachment investigation Senate Democrats call on DHS for details on response to Portland protests 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 HarrisHouse Budget Committee 'not considering' firing CBO director Former North Carolina governor set to launch Senate bid How to manage migration intensified by climate change 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 HeinrichTop academics slam Puerto Rico Self-Determination Act Groups petition EPA to remove ethane and methane from list of compounds exempt from emissions limits Senators press for answers in Space Command move decision 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 face mounting hurdles to agenda The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden meets with bipartisan lawmakers for infrastructure negotiations This week: Congress returns with lengthy to-do list 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 LeahySenate GOP opens door to earmarks House Budget Committee 'not considering' firing CBO director OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Dakota Access pipeline to remain in operation despite calls for shutdown | Biden hopes to boost climate spending by B | White House budget proposes .4B for environmental justice MORE (Vt.): Sanders’s colleague from Vermont is also a co-sponsor of the legislation.

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Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyHillicon Valley: Supreme Court sides with Google in copyright fight against Oracle | Justices dismiss suit over Trump's blocking of critics on Twitter | Tim Cook hopes Parler will return to Apple Store Democrats press Facebook on plans for Instagram for kids Give Republicans the climate credit they deserve MORE (Mass.): Markey announced last week that he would cosponsor the bill. On Tuesday, he tweeted: “#Healthcare is a right, not a privilege!”

Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyGreen tech isn't all it's cracked up to be 2024 GOP White House hopefuls lead opposition to Biden Cabinet 33 Democrats urge Biden to shut down Dakota Access Pipeline 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 SchatzGeorgia law makes it a crime to give food, water to people waiting to vote Senate Democrats reintroduce bill to create financial transaction tax GOP lawmaker introduces bill targeting tech liability protections MORE (Hawaii): Schatz is also a cosponsor of the bill.

Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenLawmakers express horror at latest Capitol attack Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan Democrats wrestle over tax hikes for infrastructure MORE (N.H.): Shaheen announced her support on Wednesday, tweeting: "I've signed-on to the Medicare For All Act introduced by @SenSanders."

Tom UdallTom UdallOregon senator takes center stage in Democratic filibuster debate Bipartisan bill seeks to raise fees for public lands drilling OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Haaland courts moderates during tense confirmation hearing | GOP's Westerman looks to take on Democrats on climate change | White House urges passage of House public lands package 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 WarrenOn The Money: Biden .5T budget proposes major hike in social programs | GOP bashes border, policing provisions Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists POW/MIA flag moved back atop White House 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 WhitehouseLawmakers say fixing border crisis is Biden's job Democrats wrestle over tax hikes for infrastructure Democrats look to impose capital gains tax at death 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 CarperFive reasons why US faces chronic crisis at border Appeals court agrees to pause lawsuit over Trump-era emissions rule Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan 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 GrahamMSNBC's Joy Reid pans Manchin, Sinema as the 'no progress caucus' Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists Biden defense budget criticized by Republicans, progressives alike MORE and Bill CassidyBill CassidyCalls grow for national paid family leave amid pandemic Senators urge Energy chief to prioritize cybersecurity amid growing threats Vivek Murthy confirmed as surgeon general MORE, these are ideas, big ideas ... those are the kinds of ideas that should have a full-blown hearing."

Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyDemocrats divided on gun control strategy Senate Democrats call on DHS for details on response to Portland protests Dems' momentum hits quagmire over infrastructure plans 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.

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Joe ManchinJoe ManchinNixed Interior nominee appointed to different department role  Against mounting odds, Biden seeks GOP support for infrastructure plan Democrats face mounting hurdles to agenda 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 SchumerChuck SchumerTop academics slam Puerto Rico Self-Determination Act NY Times beclowns itself by normalizing court-packing 'to balance the conservative majority' The first Southern state legalizes marijuana — what it means nationally 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 HollenLawmakers struggle with Capitol security after latest attack Democrats torn on Biden's bipartisan pledge Democrats wrestle over tax hikes for infrastructure 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 KaineOvernight Defense: Congress looks to rein in Biden's war powers | Diversity chief at Special Operations Command reassigned during probe into social media posts Congress looks to rein in Biden's war powers House panel advances bill to repeal 2002 war authorization MORE (Va.): Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHow Democrats can defy the odds in 2022 Close the avenues of foreign meddling Pelosi planned on retiring until Trump won election: report 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 McCaskillThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden tasks Harris on border; news conference today Missouri Senate candidate Eric Greitens tangles with Hugh Hewitt in testy interview The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the National Shooting Sports Foundation - CDC news on gatherings a step toward normality 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 StabenowFive things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan Senators introduce bipartisan bill to expand electric vehicle charging tax credit Bottom line MORE (Mich.): Stabenow, who is up for reelection in 2018, told reporters she supports letting those 55 and older buy into Medicare.

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Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden's infrastructure plan triggers definition debate Lawmakers say fixing border crisis is Biden's job Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan 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.