Presidential competitors Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and former Vice President Joe Biden are at each other's throats again this week over their opposing policy agendas. Sanders wants to enforce his Medicare for All plan, which would eliminate all private health insurance plans, while Biden is hoping to keep things more moderate and retain the parts of Obamacare that worked.
Sanders's campaign called that idea "absurd" and accused the former vice president of "lying" about his health care agenda.
At an AARP forum on Tuesday, Biden swore to voters that if they liked their employer-based health plans or private insurance plans, they can "keep it." Where have we heard that before? Oh yeah, he and President Obama lied about that in 2013. Nevertheless, the former VP swore that this time he's telling the truth, and also took a few moments to upend Sanders's plan.
"Medicare as you know it goes away" under the Medicare for All system, Biden told his audience. Because the system won't be able to handle an additional 300 million people "in one fell swoop."
"That's just silly and I don't think anyone takes those statements seriously," Sanders responded in a radio interview.
If President Lyndon Johnson could implement Medicare in under a year back in 1965, with not even half the technology we have today, Sanders argued there's no reason we can't implement his more ambitious plan in 2019.
But it was Sanders's staff who really shot back Biden. Nina Turner, co-chairwoman of the senator's campaign, was shocked that Biden had "flat out lied."
“Matter-of-fact, he gave a speech to the AARP — just flat out lied — trying to scare elderly folks, and I really did not think that the vice president would go to that length,” Turner said on Hill.TV.
She also suggested that Biden was a "coward" for not admitting Medicare for All was the best way forward.
Turner shared a chart contrasting Sanders's and Biden's plans earlier this week that really drives her point home.