Dem lawmaker launches PAC to fund candidates who support 'Medicare for All'

Dem lawmaker launches PAC to fund candidates who support 'Medicare for All'
© Greg Nash

A Washington congresswoman is launching a PAC to fund candidates who pledge to support plans for a "Medicare for All" single payer healthcare system.

Rep. Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalLawmakers urge DNC to name Asian American debate moderator Medicare for all: fears and facts House Democrats urge Trump to end deportations of Iraqis after diabetic man's death MORE (D-WA) announced Wednesday that the Medicare for All PAC would support progressive candidates who support the system championed by Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersGabbard hits DNC over poll criteria for debates The Hill's Campaign Report: Democratic field begins to shrink ahead of critical stretch Keystone XL Pipeline gets nod from Nebraska Supreme Court MORE (I-VT) during his 2016 run for president, as well as ballot initiatives in support of single-payer healthcare.

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“American families are hurting and public officials need to do better, because no family should be one healthcare crisis away from bankruptcy or a lifetime of paying off medical debt. Insurance companies, drug manufacturers and special interest groups have been standing in the way of real progress for too long - it's time we fought back," Jayapal says in a press release.

"Health care cannot be a luxury that’s only available for the wealthy and well-connected—it is a human right. Now is the time for Medicare For All," she continues.

The freshman congresswoman also released a video message through NowThis News, in which she calls the newly-founded PAC "a grassroots movement committed to supporting candidates and initiatives around the country that are ready to stand with the majority of Americans" and pass single-payer healthcare.

Just over half of Americans, including a wide majority of Democrats, support a move towards single-payer health care, according to a Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation poll released in April.

Sanders's single-payer "Medicare for All" bill has 16 Democratic co-sponsors in the Senate, a list which includes several Democrats considered likely 2020 presidential contenders.

Among Democratic congressional candidates who have supported "Medicare for All" are Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York and Ayanna Pressley in Massachusetts. 

Updated at 5:30 p.m.