Contrasting his Obamacare-era healthcare policies to Sen. Bernie Sanders', I-Vt., Medicare for All proposals, Joe Biden pointed to coronavirus-ravaged Italy as an example of how single-payer healthcare can fail.
"With all due respect for Medicare for All, you have a single payer system in Italy – it doesn't work there," Biden said in Sunday night's Democratic presidential primary debate. "It has nothing to do with Medicare for All. That would not solve the problem at all."
Biden pointed to Italy, which has suffered massive deaths to the coronavirus, overtaking China as the epicenter, according to the World Health Organization. At least 1,809 have died in Italy to date.
"It's not working in Italy right now, and they have a single-payer system," Biden concluded to contrast his healthcare plan of building on the Obamacare program vs. going to a radical Medicare for All proposal.
Biden proposed making it law under a national emergency, all U.S. healthcare due to a health crisis would be covered by the government, saying "it's all free, you do not have to pay for a thing."
"We can take care of that right now by making sure that no one has to pay for treatment, period, because of the crisis," Biden said. "No one has to pay for whatever drugs are needed, period, because of the crisis.
"No one has to pay for hospitalization because of the crisis, period. That's a national emergency, and that's how it's handled."
As the U.S. is under a national emergency for the coronavirus pandemic, Biden, 77, began Sunday night's Democratic presidential primary debate with a cough and a raspy voice.
Biden would be the oldest president-election is U.S. history, if he were to defeat Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and President Donald Trump in the general election.
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