I saw this clip online, then I saw it blow up all over Facebook. It is of Sen Bernie Sanders telling Trump’s nominee for HHS Secretary, Tom Price, that America is not a compassionate society.
Price’s response was pathetically weak tea.
This is my response. Consider it my official application for a speechwriter for Team Trump.
“Senator Sanders, you compared Canada’s healthcare system to that of the US. Here are some numbers for you to consider. The population of Canada is about 36 million people. The population of California is almost 39 million people. The population of the US as a whole is over 320 million people. By comparison, our most populous state is larger than their entire country and our country is almost 10 times their size.
The GDP/GNI of the US is about $17 Trillion. According to Forbes, the average healthcare consumed per person in the US is about $10,000 per year.
Doing the math, that means that healthcare costs in the US are about $3.2 Trillion. That puts the total cost of healthcare in the US at nearly one fifth of the US economy.
My question for you is: where do we get the $3.2 trillion minimum, necessary to cover America’s healthcare costs?
It is true that 47% of the American people to not pay Federal Income Tax. I acknowledge that these people pay other Federal taxes in one way or another, Social Security Tax, Payroll Tax, fuel excise tax, etc. But every one of those taxes goes to a specific use, Social Security, Federal unemployment, highways, etc. It does not contribute to the general fund.
Your are in essence proposing that half of America cover the healthcare costs of themselves and the other half of America. If they don’t, they get their door kicked in by a SWAT team and go to prison for tax evasion.
I’m sorry, but I do not consider that to be the definition of compassion.
To cover the additional cost of healthcare, if you raised my tax rate to equivalent to that of my Canadian counterpart, my tax burden would go up by almost $15,000. That is more than four times my current deductible. The trade off for me as a working American making above the median household income but below $250,000, is a loss of $11,000 per year. I would pay $15,000 more in taxes to avoid a $4,000 deductible. That will make it harder for me to make ends meet.
I understand compassion, but why does your definition of compassion mean that it is harder for me to buy a car or put a roof over my head or pay off my student loans or anything else I can do with $11,000 of my hard earned money?
Does our healthcare system need improvement? Of course. I am not going to deny that. Adding $3.2 trillion to the budget is not the way to fix that.
You can say that I lack compassion because of my belief. But under your plan, forcing me to be compassionate means that I lose my house.”