Overnight Health Care: Sanders enjoys big moment with single-payer bill | Five things to know about Sanders's plan | Trump applauds senators' latest ObamaCare repeal effort

Overnight Health Care: Sanders enjoys big moment with single-payer bill | Five things to know about Sanders's plan | Trump applauds senators' latest ObamaCare repeal effort
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Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersWarren joins Sanders in support of striking McDonald's workers Kavanaugh allegations could be monster storm brewing for midterm elections      Senate approves 4B spending bill MORE (I-Vt.) unveiled his single-payer health-care plan in a jam-packed Senate hearing room on Wednesday and to millions more watching online and on cable television, highlighting his newfound status as a Capitol Hill power player.

"Here is the simple truth," Sanders, flanked by nine of his Democratic colleagues, said after walking into the room to cheers and applause.

"Our opponents on this issue have the money and they have the power, but if billions of people across this country stand up, get involved in the political process and fight back, I have no doubt -- none whatsoever -- that this nation, sooner than people believe, will in fact pass a 'Medicare for all' single-payer system, and finally, finally, health care will be a right for all in the United States of America."

In 2013, no one co-sponsored a similar Sanders single-payer bill, and in 2015, when he announced his long-shot presidential bid, a relatively small group of reporters showed up to a park outside the Capitol.

At his hourlong announcement on Wednesday, Sanders spoke to a crowd of about 300, and at times shared the stage with other Democratic stars -- and potential rivals if he decides to make another White House run in 2020.

"It is an enormous honor to stand with each of you to say never again does anyone go bankrupt just because they got sick," said Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenOn The Money: Senate approves 4B spending bill | China imposes new tariffs on billion in US goods | Ross downplays new tariffs: 'Nobody's going to actually notice' Overnight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens Warren joins Sanders in support of striking McDonald's workers MORE (Mass.), one of the 16 Democratic co-sponsors on the bill.

"We will not back down in our protection of the Affordable Care Act," said Warren, one of seven Democrats to make remarks at Wednesday's event.

Read more here.

And for more from the event, click here.

The White House also panned the bill as "horrible." Read more on that here.

And for a look at where Dems stand on the Sanders bill, click here.

 

Five things about the bill...

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) rolled out his "Medicare for all" health-care bill to much fanfare on Wednesday.

While the bill has no chance of passing in the current GOP-led Congress, it is a marker of where the Democratic Party is heading.

Here are five things to know about the plan.

  1. The plan could cover everybody, but with disruption
  2. It's unclear how it would be paid for, or how much it costs
  3. It would provide very generous coverage
  4. Vulnerable Democrats are steering clear
  5. Possible presidential candidates are lining up to support it

Click here for a breakdown.

 

Insurers aren't on board...

The main insurer trade group issued a strongly worded statement against "Medicare for all" ahead of the release of Sen. Bernie Sanders's (I-Vt.) single-payer health-care plan.

"Whether it's called single-payer or Medicare For All, government-controlled health care cannot work," David Merritt, executive vice president of America's Health Insurance Plans, said in a statement Wednesday.

"It will eliminate choice, undermine quality, put a chill on medical innovation, and place an even heavier burden on hardworking taxpayers."

Read more here.

 

Bernie Sanders flexes power on single-payer

When Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) last introduced a single-payer bill in 2013, it didn't attract a single co-sponsor. Now, as he unveils his "Medicare for all" bill on Wednesday, some of the biggest names in the Democratic Party will be by his side.

It's a vindicating moment for Sanders, who is seen as a leading contender for the Democratic nomination in 2020.

The Vermont senator's bill has virtually no chance of passing this Congress, and many Democrats, including members of leadership, remain wary of the idea.

But that doesn't detract from the scope of his accomplishment. From the start of his insurgent presidential campaign last cycle, Sanders's goal was to drive Democrats into his camp on health care and other issues -- and it's working, perhaps better than he could have ever imagined.

"I guess this is why the 2016 Democratic primary was a terrific thing," said Jonathan Tasini, a prominent progressive organizer and former Sanders campaign surrogate.

Read more here.

 

Trump applauds Republican senators for latest ObamaCare repeal effort

President Trump on Wednesday applauded the Republican senators who introduced a last-ditch effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare, though he stopped short of a full-throated endorsement.

"I applaud the Senate for continuing to work toward a solution to relieve the disastrous Obamacare burden on the American people. My Administration has consistently worked to enact legislation that repeals and replaces Obamacare, and that can pass the Senate and make it to my desk," Trump said in a statement.

The statement comes after Republican Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamTrump: I hope voters pay attention to Dem tactics amid Kavanaugh fight Graham calls handling of Kavanaugh allegations 'a drive-by shooting' Graham knocks South Korea over summit with North MORE (S.C.), Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyOvernight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens Bipartisan senators unveil proposal to crack down on surprise medical bills Outdated global postal system hurts US manufacturers MORE (La.), Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonKavanaugh, accuser to testify publicly on Monday Kavanaugh furor intensifies as calls for new testimony grow House panel advances DHS cyber vulnerabilities bills MORE (Wis.) and Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerTrump to fundraise for Heller, Tarkanian in Nevada The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by United Against Nuclear Iran — Kavanaugh and his accuser will testify publicly Poll: Dean Heller running even against Democratic challenger MORE (Nev.) introduced a bill they argue will give the states control over health care.

Read more here.

 

And fore more on their last-ditch ObamaCare repeal pitch

Four Republican senators on Wednesday introduced a last-ditch effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare, urging their leadership and President Trump to support it.

Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Dean Heller (R-Nev.) argued at a press conference that their party should not give up on repealing the health law. But they face extremely long odds in trying to win 51 votes before a fast-approaching procedural deadline on Sept. 30.

"This is our last shot," Johnson said.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSanders hits Feinstein over Kavanaugh allegations: Now it’s clear why she did nothing for months On The Money: Senate approves 4B spending bill | China imposes new tariffs on billion in US goods | Ross downplays new tariffs: 'Nobody's going to actually notice' McConnell tamps down any talk of Kavanaugh withdrawal MORE (R-Ky.) has not thrown his support behind the bill, though, telling Graham and Cassidy at a meeting on Tuesday that they needed to find 51 votes on their own.

"I think Mitch would vote for it but he said, 'Go get 50 votes,'" Graham said. Fifty votes would allow Vice President Pence to cast a tie-breaking vote.

Graham challenged McConnell and Trump to step up their efforts.

"Here's my challenge to the Republican leadership: Act like this matters, because it does," Graham said.

But leadership has shown little interest in diving back into the ObamaCare repeal fight after the effort failed in July.

Read more here.

 

House GOP campaign arm targets Dems on single-payer support

The House GOP's campaign arm is targeting Democrats over their support of a government-run health-care system, commonly referred to as single-payer.

In a new digital ad released Wednesday, the National Republican Congressional Committee instructs viewers to tell Democrats that "single-payer is not an option."

"As the problems with ObamaCare grow more severe, Democrats rally around another plan ... one more devastating than the last -- single-payer health care," the ad begins.

Read more here.

 

What we're reading

Study shows flu shots may have increased risk of miscarriage (statnews.com)

Drug companies tie costs to outcomes (Wall Street Journal)

Western states try to tame homegrown marijuana (Stateline)

 

State by state

Report: Washington hospitals stingy with charity care, with language barrier an issue (The Seattle Times)

New law ensures disabled are eligible for organ transplants (Associated Press)

Millions of people are without A/C in Florida. Heat illness is their next big threat. (The Washington Post)