Sherrod Brown: 'Terrible mistake' for Democratic nominee to support 'Medicare for All'

Sherrod Brown: 'Terrible mistake' for Democratic nominee to support 'Medicare for All'
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownHillicon Valley: Commerce extends Huawei waiver | Senate Dems unveil privacy bill priorities | House funding measure extends surveillance program | Trump to tour Apple factory | GOP bill would restrict US data going to China Senate Democrats unveil priorities for federal privacy bill On The Money: Trump asks Supreme Court to block Dem subpoena for financial records | Kudlow 'very optimistic' for new NAFTA deal | House passes Ex-Im Bank bill opposed by Trump, McConnell MORE (D-Ohio) took a shot at progressive Democratic presidential candidates Tuesday, telling CNN that it would be a “terrible mistake” if the Democratic nominee supported “Medicare for All.”

Brown is not historically opposed to Medicare for All as an aspiration, but in the past he has said he would rather focus on what’s practical and can help people in the short term. He wants candidates to focus on improving ObamaCare, rather than promoting an idea that could turn off moderate voters.

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Brown’s comments come ahead of the Democratic debate Tuesday night in his home state, where health care is expected to be a major focus, and candidates will likely face questions about their support for Medicare for All. 

The policy has been a source of contention among Democrats running for president. While Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersRahm Emanuel: Bloomberg, Patrick entering race will allow Democrats to have 'ideas primary' Feehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds Jayapal hits back at Biden on marijuana 'prohibition' MORE (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenRahm Emanuel: Bloomberg, Patrick entering race will allow Democrats to have 'ideas primary' Feehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds Jayapal hits back at Biden on marijuana 'prohibition' MORE (D-Mass.) support the plan, former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenMost Americans break with Trump on Ukraine, but just 45 percent think he should be removed: poll Democrats release two new transcripts ahead of next public impeachment hearings Press: Ukraine's not the only outrage MORE and other moderates oppose it, arguing it would eliminate choice for Americans who prefer private health insurance. 

Brown is a self-proclaimed progressive, and earlier this year sparked speculation about a possible White House run. 

He has called for expanding Medicare to people 50 years and older, and is also one of the primary sponsors of “Medicare at 55” legislation in the Senate, a moderate alternative to Medicare for all that was pushed by Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Memo: Centrists change tone of Democratic race In 2020, democracy will be decided at the margins Michelle Obama presents Lin-Manuel Miranda with National Portrait Award MORE when she ran for president in 2016.  

Former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonFeehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds Press: Ukraine's not the only outrage The 2 events that reshaped the Democratic primary race MORE also proposed expanding Medicare in 1998 by allowing certain workers between the ages of 55 and 65 to buy the service.  

Brown also helped write the “public option” into ObamaCare, but the provision was removed before the law was passed.