You might have heard that Bernie Sanders supports "single-payer" — a.k.a. government-run — health care. You might also have heard that he supports "Medicare for all." Both are correct. In fact, they're the same thing, and his website uses both of the synonyms to describe his health care policy.

He might want to stick with the latter and abandon the former.

Why? Because despite them being the same proposal, a new poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows views of "Medicare for all" are significantly more favorable than "single-payer" health care.


While 44 percent of Americans favor single-payer health care, a whopping 63 percent like the idea of Medicare for all. And 36 percent view Medicare for all "very positively," compared to 15 percent who feel strongly in favor of single-payer.

And it's not just a partisan thing. Even among Democrats -- who support both single-payer and Medicare for all -- the latter polls much better. A majority (53 percent) have a very positive view of Medicare for all, while just 21 percent say the same of single-payer.


To be clear — and as Hillary Clinton's campaign will remind you — Sanders's plans for government-run health care are going nowhere. A Democratic Congress had a hard enough time passing Obamacare, after all, and now the GOP is in charge.

But politically speaking, Sanders is the rare national politician pushing this debate further to the left. And he's bringing this issue to the fore in a way we haven't seen at all in recent years or decades.

The Kaiser poll suggests people's views on this issue are still quite malleable, depending on how you talk about it — which means that talking about it in the right way could be quite beneficial.