Bernie Sanders did his second town hall on Fox News tonight. It was a questionable idea, to be sure, and there’s a strong argument to be made that he should have nothing to do with the racist network. But it did provide at least one moment of pure joy, when Fox host Brett Baier attempted to own Sanders by polling the audience about their thoughts about healthcare.
“How many people get their insurance from work, private insurance, right now?” Baier asked.
Many people, Baier and Sanders included, raised their hands.
“Of those, how many are wiling to transition, to what the Senator says, a government run system?” Baier continued.
Almost every hand that had been previously raised remained up, and cheers erupted in the audience.
This is a delicious misstep on the part of Baier. As Medicare for All has gained popularity among Democrats, Republicans arguments against it have shifted from “no one wants government health care” to “no one wants to lose their amazing private health care.” But in this crowd, at least, that premise didn’t hold up.
Conventional wisdom has said that Medicare for All is incredibly popular across the aisle—until you tell people they’d have to give up their current employer-sponsored coverage. But in many cases, Trump and his cronies will stop short of even mentioning “transitioning” to a Medicare for All plan, making it seem that a single-payer plan would somehow get rid of health care coverage for those that are currently covered by employers.
Of course no one wants to lose their healthcare! But it seems that even a Fox News-selected crowd is willing to entertain moving over to Medicare for All if they understand it’s an option.