California universal healthcare bill dies before key vote

Lawmakers did not vote by its Jan. 31 deadline on a California Assembly bill that would establish universal healthcare in the state, killing the bill, according to the Los Angeles Times

Assembly Bill 1400 would have established CalCare, a statewide single-payer healthcare system. It subsequently depended on the passage of its partner bill, ACA 11, which would have funded the program. 

Ash Kalra, the universal healthcare bill's author and Assembly member, did not put the bill up for vote after claiming it would not have received enough votes to pass, he said in a Jan. 31 statement

"Although the bill did not pass the Assembly by today's deadline, this is only a pause for the single-payer movement," Mr. Kalra said. "Our coalition, including the mighty California Nurses Association, will continue the fight for accessible, affordable and equitable healthcare for all Californians."

However, the California Nurses Association fired back at Mr. Kalra and fellow Democratic lawmakers for not bringing the bill to a vote.

"Elected leaders in California had the opportunity to put patients first and set an example for the whole country by passing AB 1400," the California Nurses Association said in a statement. "Instead, Assembly member Ash Kalra, the main author of the bill, chose not to hold a vote on this bill at all, providing cover for those who would have been forced to go on the record about where they stand on guaranteed healthcare for all people in California."

The bill has received substantial opposition from healthcare and business leaders alike.

Fitch Ratings said the bill's implementation would result in "severe" negative credit for the state's payers, according to a news release shared with Becker's.

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