Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), one of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ most high-profile supporters, admitted in a HuffPost interview that while Sanders wants Medicare for All, his supporters should realize how unlikely it is that such legislation could actually get through Congress.
In a move to lower expectations before Sanders has even earned the Democratic presidential nomination, Ocasio-Cortez reminded people that even her own party is not fully behind single-payer health care, so a Sanders administration may not be able to deliver on one of its signature campaign issues.
“A president can’t wave a magic wand and pass any legislation they want,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
Instead, Ocasio-Cortez suggested, Sanders supporters may want to get comfortable with the idea that the only thing the democratic socialist gets done on health care is a public option — something former President Barack Obama attempted to get passed before ultimately compromising to get Obamacare passed.
“The worst-case scenario? We compromise deeply and we end up getting a public option,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “Is that a nightmare? I don’t think so.”
Addressing those who might be disappointed by such a compromise, Ocasio-Cortez attempted to still make the case for why voters should choose Sanders even if he can’t get Medicare for All through.
By electing Sanders, she said, Democrats would still be able to push health care policy further left than if they elect a more moderate candidate whose starting proposal is something like “Medicare for All (who want it)” or an expansion of Obamacare.
Sanders reportedly doesn’t plan to sit passively as the Senate kills his proposals, however. Axios reported that Sanders would use budget reconciliation rules to pass some proposals using only a majority vote, and using his vice president to overrule any procedural objections from senators or the senate parliamentarian.
Still, even those measures would require Democrats to take back the Senate, and would require unity within the Democratic Party— something that currently does not exist when it comes to Medicare for All.
(H/T Hot Air)