Buttigieg tweeted support for 'Medicare for All' in 2018

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegScaled-back Pride Month poses challenges for fundraising, outreach Biden hopes to pick VP by Aug. 1 It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE (D) wrote in a tweet last year that he supported “Medicare for All,” a contrast to his attacks on the proposal at Tuesday night’s debate. 

“I, Pete Buttigieg, politician, do henceforth and forthwith declare, most affirmatively and indubitably, unto the ages, that I do favor Medicare for All, as I do favor any measure that would help get all Americans covered,” Buttigieg wrote in the 2018 tweet, which came in response to a question doubting whether he really supported the proposal for single-payer health insurance. 

In contrast, at Tuesday night’s debate, Buttigieg attacked his rival Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (D-Mass.) for supporting Medicare for All. 

Buttigieg said Tuesday that his plan to create an optional government-run insurance option is “just better than Medicare for All whether you want it or not,” a proposal he said would “obliterate private plans.”

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Warren backers pointed to Buttigieg’s tweet on Wednesday to accuse him of attacking her for a position he previously held himself. 

Asked about the tweet, a Buttigieg aide on Wednesday argued he had not changed his position, saying he supports Medicare for All as an end goal but that he wants to get there on a “glide path” by allowing people to have a choice and opt into the government plan. 

“If private insurers are not able to offer something dramatically better, this public plan will create a natural glide-path to Medicare for All,” Buttigieg’s website states.  

Buttigieg himself was asked by a reporter on Wednesday if his views had “evolved” on Medicare for All, but he said they had not, just that he had laid out more detail of his plan. 
“No, what I’ll say is that I’ve laid out a plan that now explains how we’re going to get there, that makes Medicare available to all and at the same time doesn’t do away with private plans,” Buttigieg said, according to a transcript provided by his campaign. 
“I think I’ve been consistent through the year that we don’t have to abolish private plans in order to have Medicare available to everybody,” he added, saying his proposal could be a “glide path” to Medicare for All. 

The tweet from 2018, however, does not say anything about a glide path, instead endorsing Medicare for All. While the tweet does not use the phrase “single-payer,” the question he was responding to did. 

Buttigieg also appeared to defend single-payer health insurance in a February 2019 interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

“What is Medicare for All? It’s a compromise,” Buttigieg said then. “In the U.K., you’ve got national health care. That would be the true left-wing position. The true right-wing position is free for all, all corporate, and the compromise position is a single-payer system where you have private doctors but a public payer.” 

“Buttigieg and Harris have both shifted their position on Medicare for All and proposed their own health care plans,” tweeted former aide to President Obama and “Pod Save America” host Jon Favreau on Wednesday in response to Buttigieg’s tweet. “And there can be perfectly legitimate reasons for that. The difference is, Harris hasn’t been openly attacking her old position. Trickier to pull off!”

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