- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Sen. Bernard Sanders said in a new interview that he plans to pay for “every nickel” of his universal “Medicare for All” health care system, but that he doesn’t think he has to provide an exact, detailed plan at the moment about how the proposal would affect individual Americans’ taxes.

“We’re trying to pay for the damn thing,” Mr. Sanders said in an interview with CNBC published on Tuesday. “But I think at a time of massive income and wealth inequality, it is my view that the wealthiest people in this country, the top 1/10th of 1%, should be paying substantially more than they’re paying right now.”

Mr. Sanders‘ office has outlined a list of potential pay-fors, including a wealth tax and an increase in corporate taxes. But they only cover about half of the plan’s estimated $34 trillion price tag over 10 years.

“The fight right now is to get the American people to understand that we’re spending twice as much per capita, that of course, we can pay for it,” said the Vermont independent and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. “We’re paying it now in a very reactionary, regressive way. I want to pay for it in a progressive way.”

“You’re asking me to come up with an exact detailed plan of how every American — how much you’re going to pay more in taxes, how much I’m going to pay. I don’t think I have to do that right now,” he said.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a top 2020 rival from Massachusetts, has promised more details on how she plans to pay for her universal health care plan, and Mr. Sanders said it’s not “foolish” for Ms. Warren to do so.

“All that I’m saying is that we have laid out a variety of options which are progressive. … We’ll have that debate,” he said. “But at the end of the day, we will pay for every nickel of Medicare for All, and it will save the overwhelming majority of the American people, who will no longer pay premiums.”

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