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 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) participates in a Fox News town hall on April 15, 2019, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. (Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images)

'That Backfired': Watch Bernie Sanders Counter Right-Wing Talking Point, Make Case for Medicare for All on Fox News

The Fox town hall audience cheered when moderator Bret Baier polled support for transitioning to a single-payer system

Jake Johnson

During a town hall hosted by Fox News Monday night, Sen. Bernie Sanders countered one of the most common right-wing talking points against Medicare for All and made the case for transitioning to a single-payer system—sparking applause from the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania audience.

"Democratic socialism, to me, is creating a government and an economy and a society which works for all, rather than just the top one percent."
—Sen. Bernie Sanders

"Millions of people, every single year, lose their health insurance. You know why? They get fired. Or They quit. And they go to another employer," said the Vermont senator and 2020 presidential contender after Fox moderator Bret Baier suggested 180 million Americans with employer-provided insurance would lose coverage under Medicare for All.

"Every year, millions of workers wake up in the morning and their employer has changed the insurance that they have," Sanders added. "So this is not new... Now what we're talking about actually is stability. That when you have a Medicare for All [program] it is there now and it will be there in the future."

When Baier polled the town hall audience to gauge support for switching to a Medicare for All system, most hands shot up and many cheered.

As activist Jordan Uhl put it, Baier's question "backfired spectacularly." According to recent polling, a majority of Republican voters support Medicare for All.

In addition to highlighting specific planks of his policy platform—from Medicare for All to tuition-free public college to a living wage—Sanders also used his Fox News town hall to explain his broader vision of a more egalitarian U.S. society, in which wealth and political power are not concentrated at the very top:

Democratic socialism, to me, is creating a government and an economy and a society which works for all, rather than just the top one percent. It means ending the absurd inequalities that exist today. And I want to lay this out, because you're not going to hear this much on Fox. And you're not going to hear this much in the media in general. And the American people have got to conclude whether we think it is appropriate, and what America is about... to have three families owning more wealth than the bottom half of American society—160 million people. Whether it's appropriate for the top one percent to own more wealth than the bottom 92 percent. 

Sanders closed his Fox appearance with call-and-response with the town hall audience on a broad array of issues, including infrastructure, wages, and taxes on the ultra-wealthy:

Watch the full town hall:

Part 1

Part 2


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