Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Tim Kaine (D-Va.) released the following statement on today’s announcement by Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chair Patty Murray and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Frank Pallone that they will start working on a public option health care bill:
“We are glad to see a public option gaining momentum in the Senate. Over the last five years, we have worked with people from Colorado to Virginia and everywhere in between to draft the Medicare-X Choice Act, which we believe is the best public option proposal available. We look forward to working with the Biden Administration and our Senate leadership and colleagues in moving a public option forward to bring us one step closer to achieving universal health care in this country.”
Bennet and Kaine are co-authors of the Medicare-X Choice Act, which would create a low-cost public health insurance option based on Medicare’s existing structure. The plan would be sold alongside private plans on the existing ACA marketplaces, so consumers could shop, compare, and buy what’s best for them. Participant premiums would cover the full costs of the plans, which are designed to cover all essential health benefits and primary care services while spurring competition to drive down the prices of private plans. The senators first introduced the bill in 2017.