Rochester, NH - Voters froze for Sen. Bernie Sanders ahead of his rally at the Rochester Opera House on Saturday. However, a few still chatted with us through their chattering teeth.
A top priority for many of the people in line was health care. In particular, they were excited for Bernie's Medicare for All plan, and absolutely fed up with Obamacare. I mean like really fed up.
"I think Obamacare's kinda s**t," Nicki from Stratham, NH said.
"When I had it before I was paying like $300 a month and I was making maybe $15 an hour so that wasn't working for me at all," she explained. "And I just don't see it getting better anytime soon."
"I don't want the option of private health care like the other Democratic candidates," she continued. "Because I don't think that's going to work."
She said it's "ridiculous" that contenders like former Vice President Joe Biden have been hammering Sanders about the price tag of Medicare for All, because "there's so much profit in that industry that doesn't need to be there and that's one thing that needs to be tackled."
Nicki added that she feels like she pays taxes for military-industrial complexes that just bomb children overseas and she doesn't want to pay for that. She'd rather pay for people "to have what they should have in a first world country."
Amanda from Sandy, Utah works in health care and has seen the "disparities" that exist in the industry. She said there's no way to fix that until we fix income inequality.
"I think there needs to be an overhaul," she said. "I don't think Obamacare went far enough."
Bernie Sanders supporters wait in freezing temperatures before his rally in Rochester, NH.
With the supermajority they had at the time that the Affordable Care Act was implemented, Amanda says the Democrats could have instead ushered in a universal health care system.
"They just didn't have the courage to," she said.
The issue with Obamacare, her friend David from Beacon, New York added, is that "it's a privatized program" that doesn't create equal opportunity.
"It's kind of absurd that we have to make a deal with corporations to say, 'hey this pre existing people should be able to get health insurance and let's make this back door deal that helps out maybe 1 or 2 million people,' he said. "What about the other 400 million?"
Alex, a voter from Cornwall, NY, said her parents had to declare bankruptcy three times because of medical debt and she had to get her teeth pulled for a pair of dentures. She had to take out a line of credit to help out her parents and none of them could afford the payments. Her student loan payments had to go to the procedure instead of textbooks. She concluded that Medicare for All is an ideal solution.
Okay, but what about the price tag?
"It frustrates me when people say that Bernie claims doesn't know how he's going to pay for it when he has stated many many times how he's going to pay for it," Amanda said. "It's a 4 percent increase on taxes above $30,000, which is very affordable, based on the fact that we're not going to be paying premiums and co pays and deductibles."
At his rally, Sanders talked at length about how asinine it apparently was that our northern neighbor Canada provides universal health care, while here in the U.S. people are being punished for having cancer or heart disease. Again, his assessment.
"We have 30,000 people a year dying because they don't get to a doctor when they should," he said.
The crowd that was willing to wait in freezing temperatures to hear Bernie talk about universal health care may have been excited about his Medicare for All plan, but as Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) noted on Friday night, that message is just too leftist for New Hampshire. As even Sanders campaign co-chair Nina Turner admitted in her introduction of the senator on Saturday, there is no middle ground. You're either for Medicare for All, or your'e not. There is no room for compromise.
"I think we need someone to head up this ticket that actually brings people with her instead of shutting them out," Klobuchar suggested Friday.