No, Kamala Harris Isn’t Being Preposterous

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Over at National Review, John McCormack says that Kamala Harris is being “preposterous” about her Medicare for All plan:

“Senator Sanders says that that is impossible to achieve without a middle class tax hike,” CNN correspondent Kyung Lah says. “I’m not prepared to engage in a middle class tax hike,” Harris replies, suggesting that taxes on Wall Street and financial services can fund the $30 trillion program.

There might turn out to be something preposterous about this eventually, but there’s nothing preposterous about it yet. It all depends on what kind of plan Harris proposes and what the total funding source will be. If Harris were a Republican, she’d just issue a vague, one-page description and then punt on the funding, saying that she’ll work with Congress to figure out the hard stuff. But since she’s a Democrat, I’m sure we’ll eventually get a 30-page white paper about the whole thing.

Politically, I think something along the lines of Joe Biden’s plan is probably the best bet. I’d keep Obamacare; add a Medicare buy-in; phase in a corporate health care mandate that eventually covers everyone, with the option to either provide insurance or pay a payroll tax; and guarantee subsidies such that no one ever has to pay more than 10 percent of their income in premiums. That’s the bare bones, with lots of details to be added. Overall, I’d say the goal should be for public financing to cover 80-85 percent of all health care expenses.

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate