Massachusetts Senate Vote on Single Payer Health Care Amendment

On Tuesday, May 15, Senator Jamie Eldridge introduced Amendment #125, which would have amended a broader health care cost control bill (S.2260). Amendment #125 would have committed Massachusetts to comparing, each year, its actual health care costs with the costs it would face under a single payer plan, and if after several years the ‘single payer benchmark’ proved more cost-effective for better access to care, the state would submit a single payer implementation plan to the state legislature for approval.

After a one-and-a-half hour debate on the Senate floor, the amendment was defeated by a 15 to 22 vote. Amendments opposed by the leadership of the Senate rarely receive such support. Below is the language of the amendment and a summary for Senator Eldridge’s office, the vote count, , and video of all of the Senators providing testimony for or against the amendment.

Amendment #125

Click here to download the language of Amendment #125.
Click here to download a summary of Amendment #125.

Votes For and Against Amendment #125

In favor: William Brownsberger (Belmont), Sonia Chang-Diaz (Boston), Catherine Clark (Melrose), Cynthia Stone Creem (Newton), Sal DiDomenico (Everett), Kenneth Donnelly (Arlington), Benjamin Downing (Pittsfield), James Eldridge (Acton), Susan Fargo (Lincoln), Patricia Jehlen (Somerville), Thomas McGee (Lynn), Mark Montigny (New Bedford), Marc Pacheco (Taunton), Stanley Rosenberg (Amherst), and Daniel Wolf (Harwich).

Opposed: Frederick Berry (Peabody), Stephen Brewer (Barre), Gale Candaras (Wilbraham), Harriette Chandler (Worcester), Barry Finegold (Andover), Jennifer Flanagan (Leominster), Jack Hart (Boston), Robert Hedlund (Weymouth), Brian Joyce (Milton), John Keenan (Quincy), Thomas Kennedy (Brockton), Michael Knapik (Westfield), Michael Moore (Milbury), Richard Moore (Uxbridge), Anthony Petruccelli (East Boston), Michael Rodrigues (Westport), Richard Ross (Wrentham), Michael Rush (West Roxbury), Karen Spilka (Ashland), Bruce Tarr (Gloucester), James Timilty (Walpole), and James Welch (West Springfield).

Not voting: Eileen Donoghue (Lowell), and Senate President Therese Murray (Plymouth).

Video of Senate Floor Debate on Amendment #125

Senator Jamie Eldridge (Acton), introducing Amendment #125

Senator Daniel Wolf (Harwich), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz (Boston), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator Marc Pacheco (Taunton), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator William Brownsberger (Belmont), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator Stephen Brewer (Barre), speaking in opposition to Amendment #125

Senator Patricia Jehlen (Somerville), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator Richard Moore (Uxbridge), speaking in opposition to Amendment #125

Senator Mark Montigny (New Bedford), speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz (Boston) rebuttal, speaking in favor of Amendment #125

Final Vote on Amendment #125

5 thoughts on “Massachusetts Senate Vote on Single Payer Health Care Amendment

  1. Yes, bills will be filed in January 2013. Join us on Monday, January 14th at the MA statehouse as we call on senators to co-sponsor the bills!

  2. Any further news on this? What bill # should I address in my letter to my senator, Senate Majority Whip Karen Spilka (D-Ashland), who chose not to support it last time around?

  3. Hi Chris – Yes, Senator Dan Wolf has filed this amendment from last year as a bill. It is currently Senate Docket # 875, details and the current list of co-sponsors are here:
    http://masscare.org/ma-single-payer-bill/massachusetts-single-payer-legislative-co-sponsors/

    I’d encourage you to reach out to Senator Spilka again – the bill does not automatically trigger single payer, it simply asks the state to develop a single payer plan for the legislature to consider, if a single payer plan looks like it would be more cost effective for the state.

  4. Helpful facts. Blessed myself I uncovered your web blog accidentally, exactly what surprised precisely why that incident didn’t took place prior! My partner and i saved that.

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