Speed Reads

the debate continues

Lindsey Graham vows to end Bernie Sanders' 'dream' of single-payer health care

On Wednesday, Republican senators introduced the Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson health-care bill, the party's latest attempt at repealing and replacing ObamaCare. The legislation, introduced by Sens. Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Bill Cassidy (La.), Dean Heller (Nev.), and Ron Johnson (Wis.), proposes "a block grant given annually to states to help individuals pay for health care." "This proposal removes the decision from Washington and gives states significant latitude over how the dollars are used to best take care of the unique health-care needs of the patients in each state," a statement said.

Graham goaded his Republican colleagues to not "let the health-care debate die," as he warned that a single-payer system would be "inevitable" if Republicans fail to undo ObamaCare. He declared this bill Republicans' "best and only chance" at dodging that.

"If you want a single-payer health-care system, this is your worst nightmare. Bernie, this ends your dream of a single-payer health-care system for America," Graham said in a shout-out to Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). On Wednesday afternoon, Sanders is expected to introduce the Medicare for All Act of 2017, a bill backed by at least 15 Democratic senators that would replace the current health-care system with a public system paid for by higher taxes.

Shortly after Graham unveiled his bill, Heritage Action released a statement expressing its hesitations about the bill based on the prior version, though the conservative policy advocacy organization said it would give the bill a renewed look to see if this version "actually addresses ObamaCare's regulatory architecture."

Watch Graham's full announcement below. Becca Stanek