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New London council's needless bow to Bernie

Can someone check to see if the New London City Council has received a thank-you note from Sen. Bernie Sanders yet?

The Democratic council last week voted unanimously in support of the Medicare for All Act. The proposal was pushed by the city’s tiny Green Party which, last time we checked, didn’t win any council seats in the recent election. But then again, Medicare for All is the darling of the Vermont senator and presidential candidate who really isn’t a Democrat, though he seeks that party’s nomination.

It would seem the New London council would have enough to do — what with trying to revive the city’s downtown, finding ways to expand the tax base, providing adequate policing, and making sure the municipality gets it fair share as host community for the planned wind far development hub at State Pier — without having to take on the challenge of solving the nation’s health-care coverage problems.

But really, how much research did the councilors really do?

Medicare for all is not a good fit for this country. If the Democrats want to fare poorly in the 2020 election, a great way to do it is to tell everyone who is satisfied, or relatively so, with their private and employer insurances that the Democratic plan is for the federal government to take control of it all and do a better job. Promise.

Plus, the cost would be astronomical. Plus, there is no realistic path to getting it through the legislature.

The better path is for the country is to build upon the Affordable Care Act. One approach, supported by Second District Congressman Joe Courtney, a genuine Democrat, is a Medicare buy-in approach, in his plan for people ages 50-64. It would make the Medicare pool larger, younger and healthier, bringing down per-patient costs.

At the same time, it would also make the pool of those covered by private insurances younger and healthier which, if the private insurance industry is properly regulated, should bring down the cost of premiums.

Along with drug price controls, and a return to the mandate that all must get insurance, it could go a long way in repairing health care. It has the added advantage of having a chance of getting passed.

Maybe next time the council could consult with their true blue congressman, rather than going with the Green Party and the guy from the Green Mountain State.

The Day editorial board meets regularly with political, business and community leaders and convenes weekly to formulate editorial viewpoints. It is composed of President and Publisher Tim Dwyer, Editorial Page Editor Paul Choiniere, Managing Editor Tim Cotter, Staff Writer Julia Bergman and retired deputy managing editor Lisa McGinley. However, only the publisher and editorial page editor are responsible for developing the editorial opinions. The board operates independently from the Day newsroom.


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