The Baltimore Sun shared a rather unfortunate independent analysis of Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ben Jealous's single payer proposal. The report, from the Department of Legislative Services, found that Jealous's plan would cost the state $24 billion a year.
Here's how the editors broke down the bad news:
"The analysis, drafted by the state’s Department of Legislative Services and released to The Baltimore Sun, said Maryland would have to levy a 10 percent payroll tax against every business and charge a $2,800 fee for every man, woman and child to pay for a new health care system in which doctors bill the state instead of private insurance companies."
The Jealous campaign rejected the department's findings, arguing that single payer could cost much less.
“Everyone is supposed to have access to quality affordable care and the current system doesn’t do that,” said Kevin Harris, a spokesman for Jealous. “This is about getting a better deal for Marylanders.”
Former Democratic officials are even expressing their doubts. Former Maryland Democratic state Del. Heather Mizeur, for instance, called Jealous's single payer plan “too expensive and unworkable for a state to take on individually.”
Dan Johnston, the assistant director of research for National Nurses United, Jealous's biggest backer in the governor's race, admitted that single payer will probably need to be bankrolled via sales tax increases, payroll tax increases and income tax increases.
The single payer movement has reached the national level too. Have you heard about the Democrats' new Medicare for All caucus?
Jealous, the former president of NAACP, is hoping to boot Larry Hogan from the governor's mansion. The only problem is Hogan is one of the most popular politicians in the country. He has also upended his own attack lines against him. He has tried to tie Hogan to President Trump, but just as quickly backtracked on the remarks.
"I mean, you know, look, Hogan is a Republican land developer like our president, and the similarities often end right there," Jealous told CNN's Wolf Blitzer. "He's a pretty nice guy."
A contributor for another Maryland news outlet, the Capital Gazette, wondered why Democrats had nominated such a radical and inexperienced candidate.
"It’s incredible that Democrats could nominate somebody so inexperienced and unconnected to Maryland and Maryland politics as Ben Jealous," writes Brian Griffiths.
"Never before have Maryland Democrats collectively made the decision to embrace radicalism and socialism as they did in this election," he later adds.