Bernie Sanders' Medicare-for-all plan will raise taxes by this much

Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders recently made headlines during the second Democratic presidential debate in Miami for admitting he would have to raise taxes on middle-class Americans in order to pay for his Medicare-for-all plan – now he’s detailing how much it would cost families.

During a podcast interview with NPR on Monday, Sanders said taxes could rise by $10,000 for American families.

“Of course some people are going to pay more in taxes,” Sanders said.

He added that a family currently paying $20,000 for private insurance – in premiums and out-of-pocket expenses – would see that obligation eliminated. Instead, taxes would increase by $10,000.

“Is that a good deal? I think it’s a pretty good deal,” he said.

The 2020 presidential hopeful also clarified that, under his Medicare-for-all proposal, people would lose their private insurance.

Sanders unveiled his updated Medicare-for-all bill in April, which would expand coverage of the government-run program to all Americans, not just those over the age of 65. He pushed a similar proposal in 2017.

According to one estimate, which was disputed by Sanders’ campaign, Medicare-for-all could cost more than $32 trillion over the course of a decade.

Sanders’ revised bill includes long-term care coverage. It would also cover dental, vision and hearing. The legislation allows for a four-year phase-in period. More than a dozen other senators have signed onto the bill as co-sponsors.

Medicare-for-all has become a divisive issue within the Democratic party – as lawmakers and 2020 contenders squabble over the best way to expand coverage to more people. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is for the proposal, but others – including Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar raised reservations about Sanders’ plan, and instead supports legislation that would allow people to keep their employer-based plan if they wished to do so. Others, like former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, do not think Medicare-for-all is the best option.


In addition to Medicare-for-all, Sanders has proposed the elimination of about $1.6 trillion worth of student debt. That plan would also jettison tuition at public colleges and universities. He expects to pay for that proposal through a tax on trades of bonds, stocks and derivatives -- a direct aim at Wall Street.

Sanders has also proposed an expansion of the estate tax.