WPRI 12 Eyewitness News Washington DC Bureau

Presidential hopeful Warren taking flak for $20T Medicare plan

Washington DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Massachusetts Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren is taking flak from all sides on the details of her “Medicare for All” plan, which she admits will cost $20.5 trillion in federal tax dollars.

Warren says the plan will be paid for with targeted spending cuts, taxes on corporations and the wealthy, and crackdowns on tax evasion and fraud, but conservative critics are calling it a taxpayers’ nightmare and a money pit.

Public Citizens Director Melinda St. Louis says Americans are fed up with the current healthcare system.

“250,000 people had to launch GoFundMe campaigns to try to pay for the skyrocketing healthcare costs,” she said.

The solution, according to St. Louis, is a Medicare For All plan like the one proposed by Sen. Warren.

“It would actually save money and put money back in the pockets of middle-class Americans,” St. Louis added.

Warren recently unveiled her plan to pay for Medicare For All.

“It’s all fully paid for by asking the top 1 percent and giant corporations to pay a fair share,” Warren said.

And Warren says she can do it without increasing taxes on the middle class.

“Middle-class families are projected to spend about $11 trillion over the next 10 years—reaching into their pockets to pay for premiums, co-pays, deductibles,” she said.

Warren wants to reduce those out-of-pocket costs to zero. But some say her plan still faces major political and mathematical hurdles.

“She proposed a way to pay for it and her pay-fors cover about 35 percent of the total costs of the plan,” said Adam Michel, senior political analyst with the Heritage Foundation. “The question is: what other taxes would she have to levy to close that gap?”

Michel says Warren is underestimating the costs by about $10 trillion over 10 years.

“I think that the proposal as a whole is complete lunacy,” he added. “It’s fiscally irresponsible.”

But Warren says if she’s elected president, her plan will “end the stranglehold of health costs on American families.”

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