Governor Newsom Announces Plan to Pay for Universal Citizen Health Care – CBS Los Angeles


LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The governor announced Tuesday that he wants California to be the first state to offer access to universal health care, and now some experts said the question will be whether voters will approve a tax increase of millions of Californians.

“Universal health care for all regardless of pre-existing conditions, regardless of ability to pay and regardless of your immigration status,” Newsom said Wednesday in Kern County.

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As the governor tries to sell Californians on universal health care to all citizens, including 1.1 million undocumented immigrants, he said the state’s multi-billion-dollar surplus will help pay for the program and that it will ultimately save taxpayers ’money.

“We have universal health care, but it’s on the back. It’s called the emergency room, and it costs you, the taxpayer, a fortune,” Newsom said.

State lawmakers would have to vote to raise taxes on people and businesses earning more than $ 149,509 a year, which would raise the $ 163 billion a year tax.

Newsom has already expanded health coverage since taking office to cover low-income, uninsured individuals. This plan will cost an additional $ 2.8 billion.

“It’s going to be a total disaster,” said Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, who ran against Newsom in the recall election.

Kiley is among the plan’s most vocal critics.

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“California is already very overtaxed, you know, the worst taxes in the country. That’s why more and more people are leaving the state. That’s why we had more people left than came for the first time in the state’s history,” he said. .

The Assemblyman said it’s not just the taxes that will hurt California families, it’s the increased costs you pay for products and services.

“Taxes also go to businesses, and what happens there is that they pass them on to consumers. It’s already one of the big problems with California is that taxes on businesses and rules on businesses are so high that it does everything so expensive, ”Kiley said.

But Newsom campaigned for universal health care when he ran for governor. So this may be a popular plan among voters.

“This is going to be very popular with the progressive base of the Democratic Party,” said Claremont McKenna College professor of politics Jack Pitney. “The wider electorate is a different story. This proposal could allow for a very large tax increase, and in recent elections California voters have not been entirely positive about tax increases. Although they are overwhelmingly democratic, they do not mean they will be progressive up and down the line. “

Voters will have the last word if the plan approves the state legislature. The governor said the current system does not work and costs too much as it looks.

“Why maintain a system that is expensive and inefficient and does not lower costs for everyone?” said Newsom.

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In 1994, voters rejected a plan to create universal health care. It was tried again in 2017, but did not pass the legislature.

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