Will Jerry Brown Sign Single Payer?

From Single Payer Action

When Jerry Brown was running for President in 1992, he wholeheartedly embraced a single payer national health insurance system.

“When I see in Canada that they pay $500 less per person, that they cover every citizen, and that they live two years longer and their infant mortality is 50 percent less – then I see a model,” Brown said during a debate will Bill Clinton in New York in April 1992.

“You cut out all the private health insurance, you have one single payer either at the national level or through the 50 states and that one single payer will be the one who negotiates with the doctors, the hospitals and the other providers.”

“And since you have only one source of income in the whole medical establishment, you can drive down the costs. With the holding down of the cost, you can eliminate the intermediary, the middle man, the bureaucracy. In some of these hospitals, there’s more people doing the billing that there are in direct patient care on an eight hour shift. It doesn’t make any sense. But through a single payer, as we’ve seen in Canada, you can eliminate tremendous amounts of paperwork both for the doctors, the hospitals and the insurance companies. Through them phase this in over a three or four year period, and with the lid, the tight lid, you put on medical spending, you will generate spending in the neighborhood of $80 billion. That’s enough to cover all of the people who are not now getting health care. You do run it through the government. It’s going to run through a tax system, but the money that will be spent will be hopefully, certainly for all middle class people it will be less than they are now paying in premiums or what their employer is paying and what is now coming out of their paycheck.”

Fast forward 18 years.

Jerry Brown is Attorney General of California.

And he’s now running for Governor of California.

Continue reading…


  1. write30 on March 11, 2010 at 9:25 am

    Really great post. Hope Jerry Brown be the next Governor of California.

  2. mb on March 17, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    After Jerry Brown won the Connecticut Primary in 1992, he was on the Phil Donahue show. (The win was a big one for him. ) The discussion came to healthcare. Phil asked him, ” You mean you are willling to take on the private insurance companies?” And Jerry Brown said, ” I can’t wait.”

    That weekend Pam Harriman with her Pam Pac friends got together and wrote out big checks for the Clinton campaign. Jerry Brown was soon thrown under the bus by corporate media and the rest is history.

    With this true story, I want to point out that Clinton and his people were never for healthcare reform. The Democratic Party picked the guy who could do the talk and had no intention of doing the walk. Hillary was put in charge as a decoy with a 10 volume tome, but they all smiled as “refrom” sank to its political drowning. Obama is simply the new model that the Healthcare Industry has wheeled out to the American people. Only this time instead of defeat, we are getting the most regressive bill possible. Instead of Medicare for All it becomes Myopia for All, as Big Insurance and Big Pharma rake in even bigger profits. Disgusting.

  3. Andy on March 25, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    Just because Brown was for single payer in 1992 doesn’t mean he is for it now. Brown has become significantly more conservative as he gets older. Brown needs to come out publicly with his position on this issue and stop avoiding it or he will go down in defeat because he lacked the cojones to state his views. Of course, his political “advisors” are surely telling him to avoid the issue, that he will lose votes among the TEA Baggers. Believe me, he isn’t going to get these votes anyway. Brown’s base is with liberal, educated America, and he had better realize this soon and mobilize his base with some cutting edge speeches about how California needs single payer to both save money, and avoid the pitfalls of the federal healthcare bill.

  4. Vito on March 25, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    I have to take issue with you equating the Mafia with health insurance companies. We in the Mafia have a lot more pride than any of those insurance schumbags. And as far as public safety is concern, as long as you pay your “taxes”, we protect youse real good. Maybe you have noticed, but there is very little crime in Little Italy. You can walk the streets at all hours. We don’t tolerate no small time hoods.