Senator Hinda Miller speaks out against single-payer plan

by Angela Chagnon

Sen. Hinda Miller

Monday night at a state-wide interactive television hearing regarding the single-payer issue, Senator Hinda Miller (D-Chittenden) voiced her opposition to the single-payer plan proposed by Dr. William Hsaio.

“I haven’t drunk the kool-aid,” she said. “I don’t care if it costs me my re-election, I’m going to speak the truth.”

That truth, according to Miller, is that the plan does not include a way to pay for the single-payer system or address cost-containment, which single-payer advocates like Governor Shumlin have claimed is the biggest problem with the healthcare industry.

Miller also remarked that most of the pushers of the single-payer system at the event “wore red shirts” (i.e. were members of the Vermont Worker’s Center). One of those Worker’s Center activists told Miller that Sen. Bernie Sanders was working on overturning ERISA (federal law that allows businesses to self-insure free from state interference) Vermont, allowing Vermont to force IBM and other corporations to participate in the proposed single-payer system.

Miller responded that overturning ERISA would be political “suicide”.