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Elizabeth Warren says she's finally 'getting close' to explaining how she'd pay for Medicare for All


Don't hold your breath

SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), whose presidential campaign has been using the slogan, "Warren has a plan for that," does not have a plan to pay for Medicare for All. But, she said Sunday, she's working on it, and "getting close."

"I've been working for a long time on this question about what the cost will be and how to pay for it, and I'm getting close," Warren said during a campaign event in Iowa.

As Warren has ascended to near front-runner status alongside former Vice President Joe Biden in the Democratic presidential primary, she's faced increasing pressure to provide more details about her Medicare for All plan, and how it would get paid for.

The easy answer to that question — and one which Sen. Berne Sanders (I-Vt.) has readily admitted — is that the government will have to raise taxes, including on the middle class. But Warren has refused to concede that she would raise middle class taxes, causing even those in her own party to accuse her of being evasive.

So now the candidate who always boasts about "having a plan for that" is hoping that voters will accept the idea that she has been running for president for nearly a year without having a plan for one of her biggest policy promises. And that, conveniently, she's now "getting close" to figuring that plan out, just as she begins taking fire from rivals about it.

Observers and rival candidates will now wait to see how Warren attempts to negotiate her way out of the corner she has backed herself into on Medicare for All and middle class taxes. Will she make the math work by compromising on the scope of her policy proposal, or will she attempt to show that costs saved by middle class families will exceed any tax increases?

"I think if she had a good answer, we would have seen it by now," Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said, according to the New York Times. "But I look forward to seeing it."

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