President Obama visited my town today in Central Illinois as he was receiving a meritorious award on ethics from an institute at the University of Illinois. I was not among the 1300 who drew from a lottery and got to see him in person, but I did watch parts of the livestream. He started out with broad themes of the political climate, such as civil rights, women’s and LGBT rights. But what I didn’t expect was this:
From the Hill:
“Democrats aren’t just running on good, old ideas like a higher minimum wage. They’re running on good, new ideas like Medicare for all,” Obama said.
And where was I when I heard this part of the speech? In a clinic, getting prepped for a stage 1 (slightly less) cancerous mole to be removed from my back. I’m lucky because I have a decent HMO through my state insurance plan. But not everyone does and I think they should have quality healthcare in a timely manner as I do.
Obama and establishment Democrats rejected the premise of Medicare for all and single payer health care during his eight years in the White House. But Obama previously supported single payer when he was a senator from Illinois.
The idea has gained momentum in the party following the insurgent presidential campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in 2016.
Now, 16 Democrats in the Senate are co-sponsors on Sanders’s Medicare for all legislation.
When he said that, I said “wow, that’s new!” I don’t think the nurses knew what I was excited about, but my procedure went a lot better than I expected. The skin they removed will be painful after the local anethesia wears off, but I have a weekend to recover and sick time too.
I’m hoping more Dems running in this midterm will go heed Obama’s call for that good idea. Andrew Gillum’s on board. So are Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, Kevin DeLeon, Elizabeth Warren, Jeff Merkley, James Thompson, Kristen Gillibrand and AOC . Healthcare is a right, not just a privilege as Bernie Sanders has said on more than one occasion.
This headline would have been politically unthinkable just a few years ago. Grassroots organizing + kitchen table conversations have changed the tide on Medicare for All.
This is the power of movements: supporting change and advancing tenets of a modern + moral society. https://t.co/JS2KCiDB7S
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) September 7, 2018
Let’s move that train down the tracks and show the voters that we are all in this fight together for our lives.
Thank you President Obama for supporting Medicare for All.
His support takes us another step toward ensuring that no one in the richest country in the history of the world has to forego health care because they cannot afford it. https://t.co/LK449oQ4ai
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) September 7, 2018
(cross-posted at TOP, slightly different version)