President Donald Trump thinks the single-payer healthcare plan backed by a growing number of Senate Democrats is a “horrible idea,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday.
“I think that the president as well as the majority of the country knows that the single payer system that the Democrats are proposing is a horrible idea,” Sanders said. “I can’t think of anything worse than having the government be more involved in your health care instead of less involved.”
With Republicans weighing another push at repealing and replacing Obamacare, liberals in the Senate have begun assembling support for a Medicare for All bill spearheaded by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). More than a dozen of the Senate’s 47 Democrats have signed onto the bill as cosponsors, including Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Al Franken (D-Minn.), but more moderate Democratic members have been more wary of the left-leaning bill.
The White House press secretary said Trump remains committed to improving the nation’s healthcare system and that ultimately, “fully repeal and replace would certainly be a priority.” More broadly, she said the president is interested in further removing the government from the healthcare industry, the opposite of Sanders’ Medicare for All legislation.
While Trump, according to Sarah Huckabee Sanders, opposes a single-payer plan, he has previously spoken warmly of such a government healthcare system. In a Washington Post interview days before his inauguration, Trump promised that his Obamacare replacement plan would include “insurance for everybody.” And at one of the first GOP primary debates in 2015, Trump said a single-payer system “works in Canada, works incredibly well in Scotland.”
On Wednesday afternoon, Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the American people agree with the president, not Bernie Sanders.
“Not only does the president not support it, but America doesn’t support it or Bernie Sanders would be sitting in the Oval Office right now. He pushed these ideas forward during the campaign. They were rejected, not just by America but by Democrats,” the press secretary said. “He didn’t make it through the primary. He didn’t make it into the Oval. I think that’s a pretty clear indication of what America wants to see, and it’s not a single-payer system.”