Single-Payer Promises Were Hallmark Of Calif. Governor’s Campaign. Can 2020 Candidates Learn Lessons From Him?
After his primary victory, California Gov. Gavin Newsom admitted that single-payer is a hard reality to achieve. Now that he's in office, though, he has had some success inching the needle forward. As 2020 Democratic candidates make similar big promises on health care, can they look to him for when they need to turn a political slogan into policy? Meanwhile, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren's plan to gradually ease country into "Medicare for All" has once again all but guaranteed the topic will come up in the debate on Wednesday.
Does Gavin Newsom Have The Answer To Democrats’ Health Care Fights?
A year and a half ago, Gavin Newsom was in the same place as Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, running in a tough Democratic primary and vowing “it’s about time” for a single-payer health care system while dismissing his critics as “can’t-do Democrats” who refuse to think big. Now he’s in a different place. ... As governor, Newsom’s health care program has been more incremental than promised, annoying some allies in the single-payer movement while winning some unexpected praise from industry groups. But he also may have found something larger than his own agenda: A health care path that builds on past successes, enacts fresh reforms and may eventually lead to a single-payer system — without the political earthquake that so many predict under Sanders’ bill or Warren’s financing plan. (Hart, 11/19)
The Associated Press:
Warren’s ‘Medicare For All’ Plan Reignites Health Care Clash
Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to gradually move the country to a government-funded health care system has further inflamed the debate over “Medicare for All,” likely ensuring the issue will play a significant role in this week’s Democratic presidential debate. The Massachusetts senator announced Friday that her administration would immediately build on existing laws, including the Affordable Care Act, to expand access to health care while taking up to three years to fully implement Medicare for All. That attempt to thread the political needle has roiled her more moderate rivals, who say she’s waffling, while worrying some on the left, who see Warren’s commitment to a single-payer system wavering. (11/18)
Warren's Health Care Evolution Earns Friends On The Left, Foes Back Home
[Sen. Elizabeth's] Warren’s hardline stance on [The 21st Century Cures Act] was the exclamation point on her yearslong health care transformation — a shift from a senator, sympathetic to her home state’s health care interests, to a national political figure with her sights on more sweeping policy shifts. That metamorphosis has bolstered her credentials as a progressive presidential candidate and leading advocate of “Medicare for All.” But her broadsides against drug companies have also angered Massachusetts health industry figures, who have accused her of “demonizing her constituents who work in biopharma.” (Facher and Goodwin, 11/19)
How Tom Steyer Would Secure Universal Health Care Coverage
Billionaire Tom Steyer's health care plan plants him among the centrists in the 2020 Democratic primary. He promises to expand access to health care through more Obamacare funding and a public option, while still envisioning a large role for private insurers — in contrast to the "Medicare for All" plans proposed by rivals like Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. (Luthi, 11/18)
The Washington Post:
What You Need To Know About The November Democratic Debate
Ten candidates will be on stage Wednesday for the fifth Democratic presidential debate. That’s two fewer than were onstage for last month’s debate — one who was there, former congressman Beto O’Rourke, dropped out, and another, former HUD secretary Julián Castro, failed to hit the required polling levels. And while some candidates have left the race since the October debate, former Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick has jumped in and former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg is looking at joining the already large field. (11/18)
Meanwhile, in other election news —
Democratic Group To Only Endorse Attorney General Candidates Who Back Abortion Rights
The Democratic Attorneys General Association (DAGA) will only back candidates who support abortion rights, becoming the first national party committee to make that pledge. Beginning in 2020, Democratic candidates for attorney general seats who oppose abortion access will no longer receive financial support or other assistance from DAGA. (Hellmann, 11/18)
Group Launches Seven-Figure Ad Buy Boosting Vulnerable Democrats On Drug Prices
A Democratic group is launching $2 million in new digital ads highlighting vulnerable House Democrats’ efforts to lower drug prices. The ads from the group Protect Our Care illustrate how Democrats are seeking to keep their momentum going on health care after they focused on the issue in winning back the House last year. (Sullivan, 11/18)
Pot Stock Hits Keep Coming As Biden Knocks Marijuana Ahead Of Meeting
Marijuana stocks took another leg down on Monday, after The Washington Post reported that former vice president Joe Biden said that marijuana may be a “gateway drug” that can lead users to harsher substances, a sign one of the leading democratic challengers to President Trump may be at odds with much of his party when it comes to pot. (Ashraf, 11/18)