By Max Friedman
Democratic candidates are finally starting to present and debate their health care reform proposals.
This after months of campaigning and right before the official start of the presidential primary season with next Monday’s Iowa caucuses. The primary distinction is whether we should work to defend and strengthen the accomplishments of the 2010 Affordable Care Act or scrap the system and work for a broad Medicare for All, single-payer health care system.
Here are the health care plans from the three Democratic candidates:
Clinton and O’Malley are in the “defend and strengthen” camp, while Sanders is a strong proponent of Medicare for All, as he has been for years.
Here are some resources that evaluate this important debate:
- Sarah Kliff of Vox offers an explainer of this debate, a look at Vermont’s attempt to implement single-payer, and a view of how Medicare actually works.
- Laurence Seidman and Harold Pollack have written point-counterpoint pieces about the advantages and disadvantages of fighting for a single-payer plan.
- Henry Aaron of the Brookings Institution calls single-payer an impossible (pipe) dream. This echoes a point made by Paul Krugman in the New York Times.
- Physicians for a National Health Plan welcomes the start of this important debate, and addresses some concerns.
- Matt Yglesias of Vox discusses the single-payer debate he says we should be having.
- Margot Sanger-Katz of the Upshot at the New York Times examines the tax implications of Sanders’ plan.
- Tara Culp-Ressler of ThinkProgress provides a rundown of what you need to know about this argument.
With the nomination fight really starting to gear up in the next few weeks, we’ll be sure to keep an eye on upcoming proposals and arguments about where to go next with health care reform.