Thumbnail for 535962

Single-payer health care is still too costly for California

By in Press Enterprise on February 8, 2018

By The Editorial Board

Sacramento’s push for statewide single-payer health care has taken another faltering step forward. Although state action on universal care is more consistent with America’s laboratory of democracy than an inescapable federal plan, it’s still unaffordable and unwise for the state to take it on.

The latest twists in the saga prove that out in spades. Last month, Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Lakewood, held yet another hearing on universal health care. Democrats sponsoring the single-payer bill, Senate Bill 562, had the California Nurses Association on hand to pressure him and other legislators with a Capitol rally.

It was a high-profile moment — so much so that a new coalition of mainstream health industry professionals has warned that SB562 would cost us dearly for little more than health chaos. In a letter to lawmakers, the California Medical Association, Dental Association and Pharmacists Association said the bill “would dismantle the health care marketplace and destabilize California’s economy.”

That’s a stinging rebuke. And it underscores that opposition to SB562 grows the more Sacramento’s ideologues try to move forward with the legislation.

But in a show of how ideology has blinded lawmakers to the feasibility of the plan, even Speaker Rendon has come under fire for admitting that the bill’s sponsors are too intransigent to get results. “The sponsors of the bill have sat on their hands and done nothing for the past six months,” he remarked last month. “None of the authors have made any significant amendments.”

The Nurses Association promptly blamed Rendon for failing to do his job. And the dysfunctional carousel goes around.

Doubling the state’s budget to nearly $400 billion, with increased payroll tax hikes of as much as 15 percent, might sound swell to single-payer diehards. For the rest of us — especially those of us with painful memories of California’s not-too-distant fiscal catastrophes — SB562 […]    

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *