Rubio: Democrats Want Single-Payer Healthcare

Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 11:14 AM

By Joe Battaglia

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Republican Sen. Marco Rubio accused Democrats of "secretly and not so secretly" trying to leverage Obamacare’s missteps into a single-payer system of health insurance.

"I believe single payer is always the goal that they wanted," Rubio told in an interview. "In fact, I think Obamacare was designed to eventually lead us to that point."

Democrats have openly said that a single-payer system, similar to Canada’s in which the government, rather than private insurers, pays for all healthcare costs, would be preferable to the United States’ current system of healthcare delivery.

Rubio said that liberal Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, chairman of a key Senate subcommittee, held a hearing laying out the case for single-payer healthcare on Tuesday.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said in October she "would’ve preferred single payer or public option" to the "compromise" that was Obamacare. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said last summer that Obamacare was "absolutely" a step toward a single-payer system. Implementation of such a system would likely face vigorous opposition from Republicans.

In the Breitbart interview, Rubio called the system "Obamacare on steroids."

"Single payer basically is the government takes over healthcare, becomes the only insurance company in America and as a result, it controls everything from who gets care to what kind of care you get," Rubio said. "It would completely eviscerate the quality of our healthcare."

According to Rubio, the blame for Obamacare’s shortfalls is a combination of flawed policy prescriptions and a failure by President Barack Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to meet regularly.

A 2013 Government Accountability Institute study found that from July 12, 2010, to Nov. 30, 2013, Obama and Sebelius had no one-on-one meetings. A subsequent story from The Hill, based on 750 pages of Sebelius' draft schedules obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, said the two met seven times to discuss healthcare.

"I don’t think that there’s any explanation for that," Rubio said. "You have his signature piece of legislation collapsing. You have the agency head in charge of its implementation not coming to the White House to have regular meetings? I mean, a person who has their hands firmly on the steering wheel would be calling people in on a regular basis about what’s happening and how it’s working."

Uninsured Americans have until March 31 to enroll in Obamacare.

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