Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., attempted to turn one of Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s criticisms back on her during Tuesday’s Democratic debate, arguing that she was helping Republicans by being vague about her health care plan.
“I’m tired of hearing — whenever I say these things — ‘oh, it’s Republican talking points.’ You are making Republican talking points right now in this room,” Klobuchar said. She appeared to be referring to Warren’s comments during a previous debate in which she accused the moderators of parroting Republican talking points by raising concerns about “Medicare-for-all.”
Warren, D-Mass., has repeatedly refused to say whether she will raise taxes on the middle class. During Tuesday’s debate, she maintained that she would lower costs for everyone except the wealthy and large corporations. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., has similarly pledged to lower costs but disclosed that his plan would entail raising taxes.
Both Warren and Sanders have been at the forefront of pushing “Medicare-for-all,” a controversial and sweeping proposal that would effectively limit private health insurance. But Klobuchar suggested that Warren’s plan was a “pipe dream” without naming specifics like tax increases.
Mayor Pete Buttigieg specifically called out Warren over this issue, arguing that she was taking away Americans’ choice with her plan. Both he and Klobuchar instead pushed a public option.
Warren responded by arguing that Buttigieg’s plan — “Medicare for all who want it” — would actually limit coverage to people who could afford it. She also shared several stories from the campaign trail of voters who went bankrupt because of medical costs.
Buttigieg previously criticized Warren for refusing to answer whether she will raise middle-class taxes. “Senator Warren is known for being straightforward and was extremely evasive when asked that question and we’ve seen that repeatedly,” he said.