In an interview Monday with MSNBC’s Yasmin Vossoughian, former VP Joe Biden explained why the events of the coronavirus pandemic so far have not made him reconsider his position opposing single-payer health care.
MSNBC, YASMIN VOSSOUGHIAN: I do have one final question for you, because as you’ve been seeing, our health care system seems to be crumbling underneath this crisis. There is not enough. There is not support for the healthcare system, and there’s not enough support for the American people inside of the health care system. Are you now reconsidering your position when it comes to single payer health care? BIDEN: Single payer will not solve that at all. The thing that is needed is, for example, we have a whole number of hospitals that are being so stretched, including rural hospitals, they’re going to need more financing. That doesn’t come from a single payer system. That comes from the federal government stepping up and dealing with the concerns that they have — the reimbursement that they’re going to get. How they’re going to be able to move forward and how they’re going to be able to make — provide all the needed help that are needed in their communities. This is an opportunity to look at reconstructing the healthcare system in a way that, in fact, can respond more rapidly and more — and more — and more effectively to these kinds of crises, because it’s going to come again. We should be spending — and we are spending a great deal of time and effort finding a vaccine, finding a way to — that we can deal with preventing these diseases further down the road. But, for example, we had people — when our administration — we had CDC people in other countries because we wanted to anticipate when, in fact, another virus would occur, when in fact a pandemic might occur as a consequence of a spreading virus in another country, to act quickly. The president — we withdrew those people. I insisted that we — I didn’t insist. I suggested that we should have people in China at the outset of this event. And when it all started, in Wuhan province, and what happened? We did not insist that they go into the areas (INAUDIBLE).