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Single-payer health care will be on the ballot in Colorado

It should be interesting to watch the campaigns and the arguments unfold.

I have no clue how this will fare, but supporters of a single-payer health-care system have obtained enough signatures to get the question on the ballot in Colorado next year.

Under the Affordable Care Act, a state can opt out of that program if they replace it with something that insures the same or more people with benefits that are as good or better than those mandated by Obamacare.

By my lights, the best thing about Obamacare is that it increased the share of Americans who have health insurance. The worst two things are that it is so complicated and that it still leaves a large portion of Americans uninsured. Single-payer would be much less complicated. In Canada, which has a single-payer system, they get much better overall health outcomes for much less money, although, of course, the comparison is complicated by many factors.

The Colorado proposal would leave seniors under Medicare. And it wouldn’t abolish private insurance companies, which would be free to offer competing plans. But the main plan would be paid for by a new $25-billion payroll tax that would take two-thirds from employers and one-third from employees.

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Colorado is a purple state. I wouldn’t make any guesses about how this proposal will fare. But it should be interesting to watch the campaigns and the arguments unfold.

By the way, state Sen. John Marty (DFL-Roseville) has been advocating for years for Minnesota to adopt a version of single-payer health care.

More details in this Politico report.