Kirill Reznik: Single Payer Healthcare

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There’s a lot of controversy over a Baltimore Sun article that says single-payer healthcare costs $24 billion, and Larry Hogan is having a field day with that misinformation.  This is what happens when you Govern by polls and slogans.  But the truth is not scary, and in fact, quite commonplace.

If you read beyond the headline, you would have see $24 billion does NOT represent the cost to Marylanders, but is the cost of all private pay healthcare in the State.  This number also includes insurance profits, commissions, inflated pharmaceuticals, and the expense that medical providers incur arguing with insurers. 

Last year I crafted a single-payer health care plan that could be implemented in Maryland.  That bill would eliminate all of those costs, provide for a single payroll tax REPLACING the costs and burdens to employers, and cover every Marylander. Businesses in Maryland pay an almost $7,000 for individual coverage, and almost $19,000 a family plan.  With a 10% payroll tax instead, businesses whose individual plan employees’ salaries average less than $70,000 or whose family plan employees’ salaries average less than $190,000 WILL SAVE MONEY.  In addition, those businesses will also avoid commissions and save on administering health plans.

This plan will decrease costs.  More importantly, everyone will get healthcare.  Not based on your ability to pay, or your individual health, age, or race.  And no one risks going to a doctor and becoming bankrupt. 

Rates are skyrocketing, directly as a result of Larry Hogan’s Republican Party, with Donald Trump at the helm.  In Maryland, dozens of proposals were drafted, but the only one Larry Hogan agreed to sign was a $200 million annual payment of taxpayer dollars to insurance companies to “stabilize” the market.  As a thank you, those insurance companies raised rates by 30% four weeks later.

I came to the conclusion that we have no choice because Republicans will NEVER let us fix the system any other way.  Any compromise will be viewed as trying to kill your grandmother that they will dismantle and destroy.

We are the ONLY developed, democratic, capitalist country that hasn’t come to this conclusion.  Rather than some revolutionary plan, it gets us out of the dark ages.  I intend to continue to push my legislation, regardless of who is Governor, and I fully expect Larry Hogan and his surrogates to demonize my plan, Ben Jealous’ plan, or the plan of any Democrat who has the audacity to think that Marylanders deserve to be treated like human beings.  And they will do this while personally enjoying taxpayer-funded government healthcare for themselves.

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