Sanders: ‘I’m Not Advocating for the U.S. Government To Take over the Health-Care System’

The Iowa fiasco ‘is damaging’ to Democrats’ credibility

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MARGARET BRENNAN: Your campaign reported some inconsistencies in the results out in Iowa, as did two other campaigns. Columnist Peggy Noonan wrote this. “They can’t run a tiny caucus in a tiny state, but they want us to believe they can reinvent American health care.” How damaging is it that the Democrats couldn’t get this right?

SEN. SANDERS: It is damaging. And I- it really saddens me because, you know, I went all over the state of Iowa and there are beautiful people, good people who take their responsibilities seriously. And the fact that the Iowa Democratic Party that has received all kinds of money, could not count those votes in a timely matter is really a sad state of affairs.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Right, but you’re advocating for the empowerment of the U.S. government to take over the entire health care system. This just optically— 

SEN. SANDERS: No. Hold it- hold it, MARGARET.

MARGARET BRENNAN: —looks like the party—




MARGARET BRENNAN: —it’s own caucus.

SEN. SANDERS: MARGARET. MARGARET, that’s not a true statement. I’m not advocating for the United States government to take over the healthcare system. What I am advocating for is an expansion of Medicare. Medicare exists. 


SEN. SANDERS: But I want to expand it over a four year period—

MARGARET BRENNAN: —which would be administered by the U.S. government—

SEN. SANDERS: Precisely.

MARGARET BRENNAN: —and your administration, if you win. 

SEN. SANDERS: Just as Medicare is right now. But it- but it’s not a takeover. People will still go to the same doctor. They’ll go to the same hospital. We will substantially lower the cost of prescription drugs. Cost per person will go down. 

MARGARET BRENNAN: Right. But what- but I think— 

SEN. SANDERS: People will be paying less for healthcare. 


SEN. SANDERS: It’s not a take over.

MARGARET BRENNAN: —the nub of the criticism, though, is that this is a question of competency. And straight out of the gate, how do you reassure the public that the party whose ticket you are—


MARGARET BRENNAN: —running on can do this and do this successfully in the states ahead? Nevada is already—


MARGARET BRENNAN: —saying when it comes to their caucuses, they’re short of volunteers. Our campaign reporter says they’re short a thousand caucus chairs and they might have to even hold two caucuses at once. This doesn’t look efficient.

SEN. SANDERS: Well, alright, that may well be the case, but let’s get back to the United States government. I’m not the chair of the Nevada Democratic Party.

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