SAN FRANCISCO - Sen. Bernie Sanders was in San Francisco on Friday to promote his recently introduced Medicare for All plan at a convention of California nurses – a group who widely endorsed him for his unsuccessful 2016 presidential bid.
And he took no time in bashing President Donald Trump and the Republican leadership:
"We're going to take you on and defeat you," Sanders told the crowd, dressed in a sea of red. "Today the immediate concern is the horrific legislation that throw 32 million Americans off of the healthcare they currently have. We're not going to let you pass the horrific legislation."
The California Nurses Association, though, welcomes Sanders’ legislation as part of a “common fight for health care for all and social justice,” RoseAnn DeMoro, the California Nurses Association's executive director, and the host of the event in the Yerba Buena Gardens Esplanade.
Sanders' proposed single-payer health care system would expand Medicare — which is reserved for older and disabled citizens — to everyone.
Political experts say that Sanders’ idea had no chance of passing with Republicans controlling both houses of Congress and the White House.
While Sanders was in San Francisco, Sen. John McCain on Friday announced he wouldn’t vote for the Republican bill repealing the Obama health care law.
McCain's statement likely deals a fatal blow to the last-gasp GOP measure in a Senate showdown expected next week.
The Arizona Republican says he can't back the partisan GOP measure because "we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats."
He also says he can't back it without knowing the proposal's impact on insurance coverage and premiums. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has said its estimates on that won't be ready next week.
Sanders told the crowd on Friday that he wished all Republicans would have the "conscience" that McCain has.
On social media, Sanders was getting some love. "Thank you Bernie for speaking on behalf on us Americans who need the help and have worked hard their whole lives!" Becky Keller wrote on Facebook.
And some criticism. One person called him a "wacko." J. Grace Lewis told him to "go back to Vermont."