Dem senator attacks litmus tests over single-payer: It’s ‘nuts’

In an under-the-radar, late-September interview with “The Arena Talks” podcast, Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz( Hawaii) condemned how single-payer has become a litmus test among progressives.

“I’ll only make one broader point about healthcare and politics. It’s only in healthcare where, if you are not for a single player, you are immediately a sell-out. It is only in healthcare where everything becomes a litmus test about your progressive purity, ” Schatz said.

“And I think that’s nuts, ” he added.

Schatz built the phase after discussing his own plan for healthcare reform, which is “Medicaid for All” or “Medicaid for anyone who wants to buy into it, ” as compared to the plan introduced by Sen. Bernie Sanders( I ., Vt .), “Medicare for All.”

“I think Medicaid should compete with these private sector alternatives. I don’t think it should necessarily replace the private insurance marketplace, ” Schatz said.

The senator said his plan would increase competition in the private insurance marketplace because Medicaid has a “pretty good” benefits package and is economically efficient.

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