Bernie Sanders: The Time for Medicare for All is Now

Adequate health care is a human right.

The push for universal, single payer Medicare for All is on.

This speech was given atthe first stop in the Democratic Party unity tour that DNC Chair Tom Perez and Sen. Bernie Sanders have embarked upon. For more on this effort to unite a deeply fractured party behind a message of economic populism, read John Nichols’ April 18 piece in The Nation magazine, The Democratic Party Must Finally Abandon Centrism. Writes Nichols:

It is easy to dismiss the “Come Together and Fight Back” Tour that this week will take Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez to eight cities in eight states this week as mere political theater. But this tour has the potential to finally begin redefining a Democratic Party that is still struggling with its identity after the disastrous 2014 and 2016 election cycles. That’s a big deal, not just for a party that lacks focus but for an American political process that will alter dramatically—for better or for worse—in the months and years to come.

Political parties change identities over time, as anyone who has watched the sorry trajectory of the Republican Party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Dwight Eisenhower can certainly attest. Sometimes, parties evolve. Sometimes, parties respond to moral and political demands that can no longer be denied. That was certainly the case for Democrats in the late 1940s and ’50s, when wise members of the party began to recognize the necessity of a clean break with the Southern segregationists who had historically been central figures in the Democratic coalition.

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