How Elizabeth Warren Plans to Pay for Medicare for All

A big topic on our many Democratic presidential debate stages this summer has been health care reform. Several candidates, including Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, have been pushing for Medicare for All, through which the government would provide our health coverage.

But doing so would be expensive, and not all candidates have been clear about the source of the funding it would require. One of them, until today, was Elizabeth Warren.

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Her plan has finally arrived, in an exhaustive Medium post where she spells out how she’ll one-up Sanders’ Medicare for All Act proposed in the spring.

Under my plan, Medicare for All will cover the full list of benefits outlined in the Medicare for All Act, including long-term care, audio, vision, and dental benefits. My plan will cover every single person in the U.S., and includes common-sense payment reforms that make Medicare for All possible without spending any more money overall than we spend now.

Warren proposes that under her juiced-up version of Medicare for All, every person in America would have full health coverage and long-term care coverage without having to stay within a provider network. Over the course of 10 years, that’ll cost $52 trillion. So, how do we pay for that?

According to Warren and her Medicare for All research team, $31.5 trillion will come from existing anticipated federal and state budgets for healthcare.

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The remaining $20.5 trillion needed would come from “targeted spending cuts, new taxes on giant corporations and the richest 1% of Americans, and by cracking down on tax evasion and fraud,” she wrote.

Warren promises there would be “not one penny in middle-class tax increases.” She says her plan will actually put $11 trillion that would be spent on insurance and out-of-pocket healthcare expenses back in taxpayer pockets.

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But where do you even get $20.5 trillion anyway? Here’s the short version of Warren’s list:

$8.8 trillion: Employers who sponsor healthcare coverage will still pay, but would do so as an Employer Medicare Contribution.

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Warren proposes that employers companies would determine their average health care cost per employee at the company, adjust it up “to account for the overall increase in national healthcare spending,” multiply it by the number of employees, and then pay 98% of that number per year. Why 98%? Warren writes that it’ll guarantee every company pays less for healthcare than it does right now. Small businesses with fewer than 50 employees would be exempt, along with self-employed people under a certain threshold. If there’s not enough Medicare revenue coming in through employers, a Supplemental Employer Medicare Contribution would be required for some big companies.

$250 billion: Right now, you can deduct out-of-pocket health care expenses from your taxes if they add up to more than 10% of your adjusted gross income. Warren argues that we won’t need that anymore.

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$1.4 trillion: All that healthcare money we pay now will be back in our pockets, and so our higher incomes will be taxed per usual.

$2.3 trillion: Invest in stronger IRS tax enforcement to reduce taxes lost through evasion and fraud.

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$800 billion: Collect a “small tax on financial transactions—one tenth of one percent on the sale of bonds, stocks, or derivatives” from financial firms.

$100 billion: Charge a “risk fee” to the 40-some biggest banks in the nation.

$1.25 trillion: Adjust how businesses write off depreciation of assets.

$1.65 trillion: Institute minimum tax of 35% on corporations’ foreign earnings for each country where they do business. Also tax foreign companies based on their U.S. sales.

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$1 trillion: Make billionaires pay six cents for every dollar of their net worth over $1 billion.

$2 trillion: Tax capital gains income annually and at higher rates for the wealthiest 1%.

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$400 billion: Reform immigration and use freed-up funds for healthcare.

$798 billion: Tighten defense spending and bring troops home from Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

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There you have it. You can be sure this plan will be a hot topic in the next Democratic presidential debate (the fifth so far!), scheduled for Nov. 20.

Darknet  Lifehacker

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