The single-payer health proposal carelessly forced through the state Senate earlier this month was rightly put on hold Friday. Calling the bill “woefully incomplete,” Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Lakewood, shelved Senate Bill 562 “until further notice.”
While single-payer advocates have condemned Rendon for the decision, the truth is that whatever the merits of a single-payer health plan, the bill approved by the Senate on June 1 and passed off to the Assembly completely lacked the sort of detail and consideration any credible proposal ought to have.
As Rendon noted in a statement, the bill as in its current form and as approved by the Senate failed to address critical issues “such as financing, delivery of care, cost controls, or the realities of needed action by the Trump Administration and voters to make SB562 a genuine piece of legislation.”
Indeed, while most Democratic senators ended up voting for the bill, others sympathetic to the concept of single-payer health care either abstained or even voted against it, precisely because it was incomplete.
Sens. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, Ben Hueso, D-San Diego, and Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, all urged the Senate to continue working on the bill before kicking it over to the Assembly “to fill in all of the blanks,” as Hueso put it.
Yet, for whatever reason, the bill’s authors, Sens. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, and Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, seemed less concerned with developing a legitimate piece of legislation and more interested in the symbolism of the Senate approving single-payer legislation, however hollow.
Disturbingly, all the California Senate demonstrated in passing SB562 was that it was perfectly willing to approve massive government takeovers of key sectors of California’s economy with only the vaguest idea of what it had just approved.
While the California Nurses Association has blasted Rendon as “acting in secret in the interests of the profiteering insurance companies” and is…