Democratic candidates

Black Book inspects the US Presidential Candidates’ positions on Healthcare

Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, healthcare has been a defining issue in many campaigns and elections. Most recently, in 2014 only 36 percent of 2014 Democratic candidates mentioned support of the Affordable Care Act in their platform.


Joe Biden

  • According to The Huffington Post in September 2013, Joe Biden actively supported the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Promoting the introduction of the healthcare exchange system, Biden said, "Companies won’t be able to use your medical history to determine how much to charge you. They won’t be able to charge you more just because you’re a woman. They’ll have to be transparent about what they’re offering and compete against each other. It’s going to make a world of difference.
  • During his run for president in 2008, Biden proposed a healthcare plan "that would expand access to health coverage for all children and adults, but stops short of mandating universal coverage," according to NBC News.
  • Biden voted in favor of S 812 - Greater Access to Affordable Pharmaceuticals Act of 2002, which sought to improve the timing of generic drug availability and permit the importation of prescription drugs from Canada.
  • Biden voted in favor of S 830 - Food and Drug Modernization Act of 1997, which became law on November 21, 1997, and expedited the "review of new drugs intended for serious conditions ad demonstrating the potential to address unmet medical needs for those conditions.
  • In 1996, Biden voted in favor of an amendment to S 1028 - Health Insurance Reform Act of 1995, which would have eliminated tax-deductible medical savings accounts in 1996.

Lincoln Chafee

  • Following the Supreme Court's upholding of the Affordable Care Act in 2012, Lincoln Chafee said in a press release, "It is an economic imperative that we address the problem of uninsured Rhode Islanders and rising healthcare costs. I'm confident of the clear path forward that we have marked to achieve universal coverage for
  • Rhode Island also adopted Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, although Chafee sought to reduce spending on Medicaid by $43 million in his final budget

Hillary Clinton

  • According to the Huffington Post, in March 2014 Hillary Clinton said, "she supports Obamacare, and opposes single-payer health insurance.
  • According to a February 2014 report titled, The Hillary Papers, Diane Blair, a political science professor and friend of Clinton's, "wrote that Hillary Clinton vouched for a single payer health-care system during a family dinner in 1993.
  • During the 2008 presidential campaign, Clinton introduced a healthcare plan that would mandate insurance coverage for all Americans either through a private insurance plan or employer-provided insurance. She proposed funding the program by repealing the Bush tax cuts. According to Newsweek, "It was Obama who ultimately came around to Clinton's point of view when he included the mandate in his own health care proposal.
  • In a 2004 op-ed, Clinton wrote, "As Senator John Kerry has proposed, we should cover everyone living in poverty, and all children; allow people to buy into the federal employee health benefits program and also help employers by reinsuring high-cost claims while assuming more of the costs from hard-pressed state and local governments.
  • Hillary Clinton was a chief proponent of the Bill Clinton's Health Security Act, which proposed "to reform the health care system so that all Americans are guaranteed comprehensive health coverage.
  • Clinton was instrumental in the passage of the State Children's Health Insurance Program, which provides matching funds to states to provide health insurance to children in low-income families.

Andrew Cuomo

  • In 2012, Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order to establish the New York Health Benefit Exchange under the Affordable Care Act.[20] Cuomo commented on the exchange saying, “The bottom line is that creating this health exchange will lower the cost of health insurance for small businesses, local governments and individual New Yorkers across the state.

Martin O'Malley

  • On August 7, 2015, Martin O'Malley said that healthcare reform must “eliminate the profit motive” for hospital CEOs who “keep their hospitals solvent by keepings the beds filled.” O’Malley pointed to a program he developed while governor of Maryland to prevent “avoidable hospital readmissions.
  • In 2012, O'Malley opted to create a state healthcare exchange under the Affordable Care Act.
  • In April 2014, O'Malley replaced the failed Maryland Health Connection with "the technology Connecticut developed for its Obamacare website, AccessHealthCT.

Bernie Sanders

Although Sanders is an independent senator, he has chosen to run as a Democrat in the 2016 presidential race
  • Bernie Sanders sponsored S.1782 - the American Health Security Act of 2013, which "Expresses the sense of the Senate concerning: (1) enactment of a Medicare-for-All Single Payer Health Care System; (2) recognition of health care as a human right; (3) state flexibility in designing health care programs; and (4) the goals of a new single-payer health care system, efficiencies through integrated care, and implementation of policies to ensure higher quality, better prevention, and lower per capita costs.
  • Sanders voted for H.R.3590 - the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare". It became law on March 23, 2010.
  • Sanders voted for H.R.3103 - the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, also known as HIPPA. It became law on August 21, 1996.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term 2016 + presidential + candidates + healthcare


  1. The Washington Post, "Only 36 percent of Democratic candidates have expressed support for Obamacare," September 30, 2014
  2. Huffington Post, “Joe Biden Makes Big Push For Obamacare In Iowa," September 30, 2013
  3. NBC News, “Biden unveils healthcare plan," October 23, 2007
  4., "S.812 - Greater Access to Affordable Pharmaceuticals Act of 2002," accessed July 17, 2015
  5., "Roll Call Vote for S. 812 (Greater Access to Affordable Pharmaceuticals Act of 2002)," accessed July 17, 2015
  6., "S.830 - Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997," accessed July 17, 2015
  7., "Roll Call Vote for S. 812 (Greater Access to Affordable Pharmaceuticals Act of 2002)," accessed July 17, 2015
  8., "S.Amdt.3677 to S.Amdt.3676," accessed July 17, 2015
  9., "S.Amdt. 3677 to S.Amdt. 3676 to S. 1028 (Health Insurance Reform Act of 1995)," accessed July 17, 2015
  10., “Governor Lincoln Chafee, Lt. Governor Roberts, State Officials Respond to Supreme Court Decision on Affordable Care Act,” June 28, 2012
  11. Rhode Island Executive Office of Health & Human Services, “Healthcare Overview,” accessed May 5, 2015
  12. Providence Journal, “Chafee’s $43-million cut to Medicaid touches many sectors of R.I. health care,” January 16, 2014
  13. Huffington Post, "Hillary Clinton Likes Obamacare, And Opposes Single-Payer Health Insurance," accessed February 2, 2015
  14. The Washington Post, “The four most notable nuggets from ‘The Hillary Papers’," February 10, 2014
  15. Fox News, “Sen. Hillary Clinton Unveils $110 Billion Universal Health Care Plan," September 17, 2007
  16. Newsweek, "Hillary Clinton Promises to Fix Obamacare," accessed February 2, 2015
  17. New York Times, "Now Can We Talk About Health Care?," accessed February 2, 2015
  18., "Description of Health Security Act," accessed February 2, 2015
  19. Fact Check, “Giving Hillary Credit for SCHIP," March 18, 2008
  20. Governor.NY.Gov, "Governor Cuomo Issues Executive Order Establishing Statewide Health Exchange," accessed February 5, 2015
  21. New York Times, “Cuomo Acts to Advance Health Law in New York," April 12, 2012
  22. Globe Gazette, "O'Malley says hospital CEOs help drive up health care costs," August 7, 2015
  23. New York Times, “Most Governors Refuse to Set Up Health Exchanges," December 14, 2012
  24. Connecticut Mirror, “Maryland scraps Obamacare website for Connecticut model," April 1, 2014
  25. USA Today, "Party choice is key issue as Sen. Sanders mulls 2016 run," September 8, 2014
  26., "S.1782," accessed April 8, 2015
  27., "H.R.3590," accessed April 8, 2015
  28., "H.R.3103," accessed April 8, 2015
  29. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Obamacare is flawed, Jeb Bush says at Milwaukee event," November 4, 2013
  30. Politico, "Jeb Bush: End 'crony capitalism'," October 29, 2014
  31., “Christie calls Obamacare a 'failed federal program'," March 18, 2014
  32. The Political Guide, “Chris Christie on Health Care," October 9, 2010
  33. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  34. Politico, “Chris Christie nixes state-run insurance exchange," December 7, 2012
  35., “Gov. Christie to announce expansion of Medicaid in budget speech, sources say," February 26, 2013
  36. CNS News, "Sen. Ted Cruz: 'I Intend to Make 2016 a Referendum on Repealing Obamacare'," August 4, 2015
  37., "S.647," accessed March 5, 2015
  38., "Sen. Cruz Introduces the Health Care Choice Act," accessed March 5, 2015
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  40. Politico, "Ted Cruz ends marathon speech," September 24, 2013
  41., "S.1292," accessed March 5, 2015
  42., "S.177," accessed March 5, 2015
  43. Washington Post, "Huckabee calls court’s health-care ruling an ‘act of judicial tyranny’," June 25, 2015
  44. Politico, "Huckabee says Obamacare 'not working'," December 22, 2013
  45. Talking Points Memo, "Huckabee Opposes Insurance For People With Pre-Existing Conditions," September 17, 2010
  46. Mike Huckabee for President 2008, "Issues: Healthcare," accessed July 8, 2015
  47. Newsmax, "Bobby Jindal to Newsmax: 'Repeal and Replace All of' Obamacare," August 12, 2015
  48. Wall Street Journal, “Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal Proposes Alternative to Affordable Care Act,” April 2, 2014
  49. Cato Institute, “Fiscal Policy Report Cards on America’s Governors 2014,” accessed November 21, 2014
  1. NPR, "Gov. John Kasich On Health Policy, Religion And Inclusiveness," July 25, 2015
  2. Vote Smart, “John Kasich's Issue Positions," accessed December 3, 2014
  3. The Political Guide, “John Kasich on Health Care," August 17, 2010
  4. Politico, “Gov. John Kasich: Repeal Obamacare, but not all of it," accessed December 23, 2014
  5., “Political comeback comes with a Tea Party twist and a big fight with unions: John Kasich 5.0," May 15, 2014
  6. The Washington Post, “John Kasich just broke from his party on Obamacare. Or did he?," October 20, 2014
  7., "H.R.2668," accessed March 17, 2015
  8., "H.R.2," accessed March 17, 2015
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  10. 59.1 Newsmax, "Ex-NY Gov. Pataki: Obamacare 'Worst Law of My Lifetime'," March 25, 2015
  11. C-SPAN, "Republican Leadership Summit, Former Governor George Pataki," April 17, 2015
  12. FOX News, "Sen. Rand Paul's remedy for ObamaCare: 'We could try freedom for awhile. We had it for a long time'," January 5, 2015
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  17. The Hill', "Paul: 'Difficult to turn the clock back' on O-Care," April 25, 2014
  18. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named hc
  19. Politifact, "Jack Conway says Rand Paul backs a $2,000 deductible for Medicare," accessed May 25, 2015
  20. Bloomberg, "Rick Perry: Congress Should Repeal Obamacare, But Let the States Replace It," June 2, 2015
  21. The Huffington Post, "Rick Perry Calls Implementation Of Obamacare A 'Criminal Act'," October 2, 2013
  22. Office of the Governor Rick Perry, "Gov. Perry: Successful Health Care Reform Must be Achieved through State-Specific Solutions," September 23, 2009
  23. Texas Medical Association, "Physicians Urge Texas Senate to Pass HB 274," May 21, 2011
  24. The Economist, "Reading the record," August 20, 2011
  25. New York Times, “Malpractice Suits Capped At $750,000 In Texas Vote," September 15, 2003
  26. The Washington Post, “Texas Families Seek to Block Gov's Order," February 24, 2007
  27. The Washington Post, "Rick Perry reverses himself, calls HPV vaccine mandate a ‘mistake’," September 13, 2011
  28. Commonwealth Fund, “States in Action Archive," August 16, 2007
  29. U.S. Senator for Florida, Marco Rubio, "Rubio Leads Effort To Protect Seniors, Prevent Medicare Fraud," July 28, 2015
  30., "Healthcare," accessed February 17, 2015
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  32. Pew States, "Seizing Medicaid Expansion as a Means to Reform," February 11, 2013
  33. Governor of Nevada, "Sandoval Statement on Virginia Health Care Lawsuit Ruling," December 13, 2010
  34. Times Free Press, "Rick Santorum visits Chattanooga, says Obamacare will fail," November 1, 2013
  35. USA Today, "Santorum: My plan offers a better way than ObamaRomneyCare," accessed March 19, 2015
  36. Forbes, "Donald Trump Hates Obamacare - So I Asked Him How He'd Replace It," July 31, 2015
  37. C-SPAN, "Iowa Freedom Summit, Donald Trump," January 24, 2015
  38. The Washington Times, "Donald Trump: ‘Obamacare will shut down this country’," September 30, 2013
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  42. CNN, "Obama can't pass buck on health insurance," June 24, 2015
  43. CBS News, "Face the Nation transcripts December 1, 2013: Menendez, Corker, Walker," December 1, 2013
  44. Wisconsin State Journal, “Scott Walker rejects Medicaid expansion, proposes alternate plan to cover uninsured," February 14, 2013
  45. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Walker scores victories on tort reform, HSAs," January 20, 2011