Heading into Tuesday’s midterm elections, it’s clear that the GOP is terrified of Democrats winning control and moving forward with their ideas on Medicare for all.
And now we know why: Republicans know that Medicare for all will make it easier for everyone over 18 to vote, meaning they could lose control of the House, the Senate, the White House and state governments all in a few short years.
Thom Hartmann from the Independent Media Institute points out:
In Canada, every citizen has a Canadian government-issued “Health Insurance Card” (you can see Quebec’s card at the link). It’s largely only available to citizens, as all citizens are eligible for the Canadian Medicare system; everybody else has to work out other insurance options (yes, there are insurance companies in Canada). And in most provinces, the card has your photo and works as an ID card as well as a driver’s license or passport.
And the Canadian government also explicitly says right here on Quebec’s elections website that your Medicare card is also your first-choice voter ID card. An American version could work identically, perhaps with a star or hologram or other mark to identify citizens as opposed to Medicare-eligible permanent residents, etc.
Tarek, a Canadian listener to Hartmann’s radio/TV program, said: “Here in Canada, citizens and permanent residents alike are covered by publicly funded health care that is administrated through the provinces, whereas temporary residents must be covered via other means, namely buying private health insurance.”
“Since it is in everyone’s best interest to be have ‘free’ health care coverage, unlike other government issued identifications, such as driver’s license…etc, the vast majority (if not all) Canadians from all socioeconomic backgrounds make sure to obtain their health cards, which can be used as an official photo ID for flying domestically, buying alcohol and more importantly voting!”
An estimated 2 million Americans tried to vote in the 2016 presidential election, but were turned away for lack of the proper ID.
The Brennan Center reports a 33% increase in voters purged during the 2014-1016 election cycle (16 million), compared with the 2006-2008 cycle (12 million purged), as the GOP has made ID and purges (along with fear mongering about brown-skinned people) their main electoral strategy.
In just the past 12 months alone, up to 14 million voters additional voters have been purged from rolls nationwide, which is not surprising considering the fact that Republican-controlled state have introduced more and more ID laws of the last 20 years.
So, if there were a national healthcare registration that included an ID card in order to get medications and health care needs taken care of, it could serve as voter ID as well, meaning that the voter suppression used by Republicans would be rendered useless.
In the view of many, this is the real reason Republicans are terrified of “Medicare for all”, which democrats just might make happen should they flip congress today.