Dec 3, 2019

Biden on Buttigieg health care policy: He stole it

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg and former Vice President Joe Biden at the Democratic presidential debate in Miami in June. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden told reporters on his campaign bus in Iowa Monday that Democratic presidential rival South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg "stole" his health care plan, Reuters reports. Other news outlets and journalists also reported the remarks.

Why it matters: Buttigieg has soared in recent polls. He tops Iowa's November poll by nine points, while Biden places third, behind Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who the former vice president claimed doesn't have broad enthusiasm in the Democratic Party, according to the Wall Street Journal.

He stole it. What would you have done to me? You’d have torn my ears off."
— Biden's comments on Buttigieg's health care plan, per Reuters

The big picture: Biden, who is on an eight-day bus tour of the Hawkeye State, has pledged to build on the Obama administration's Affordable Care Act, with a new public insurance option, which would compete alongside private insurance.

What they're saying: "My proposal is straightforward. It is Medicare for all who want it and it significantly increases the subsidies to be able to get class A coverage," Biden said, per the Des Moines Register.

  • He went on to make the accusation about fellow moderate Buttigieg and his health care proposals, saying he would've been slammed for copying "someone else’s health plan," according to Reuters.

The other side: While Buttigieg's campaign wouldn't comment on Biden's remarks, Reuters credits the mayor with coining the phrase "Medicare for all who want it," noting that the mayor's statements "pre-date Biden's current presidential campaign."

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Trump campaign attacks Buttigieg during Democratic debate

Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The Trump campaign, the Republican National Committee and "Black Voices for Trump" sent coordinated mass emails during the Democratic debate Wednesday attacking Mayor Pete Buttigieg for his record on race and policing in his hometown of South Bend, Indiana.

Why it matters: As Axios' Jonathan Swan reported on Sunday, top Republicans are taking Buttigieg seriously as a potential general election candidate after his breakout poll in Iowa and his rise in New Hampshire. Several top Trump advisers have raised concerns that Buttigieg is more talented than Joe Biden and that he will be harder to brand as a leftist radical than Sens. Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders.

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Keep ReadingArrowNov 21, 2019

Biden takes aim at Trump as he launches Iowa tour

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks during a campaign event in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Saturday. Photo: Joshua Lott/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden took aim at President Trump and the impact of his tariffs on Iowa farmers, as he launched an eight-day "No Malarkey" barnstorm bus tour of the state Saturday.

We can overcome four years of Donald Trump, but eight years will literally, literally begin to change the character of this nation, and we cannot let that happen."
Go deeperArrowDec 1, 2019

Buttigieg with 9-point lead in new Iowa poll

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Presidential hopeful and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg has soared to the top of the latest Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll of 2020 Democratic candidates, released Saturday evening.

The big picture: He's the first choice for 25% of Democratic caucus-goers polled in the latest survey — with a 9-point lead over his closest rival, Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Buttigieg also topped a Monmouth University poll released Tuesday, where he's the favored candidate among 22% of those surveyed.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Nov 17, 2019