Sanders To Hold Online ‘Medicare For All’ Town Hall

By on January 12, 2018

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is taking his healthcare message to a new platform, bypassing mainstream media altogether and making use of online avenues to hold a town hall about his “Medicare for all” plan.

Sanders says he wants to go beyond “traditional” media outlets with his message. He believes he can engage just as large an audience by going through online outlets — NowThis, Attn:, and the Young Turks, for example — as he can by appearing on mainstream networks like CNN.

“For the first time in American history we will be holding a nationally televised town meeting on Medicare for all. The United States is the only major country on earth not to guarantee health care to all people, but amazingly there has not been one network town hall to discuss why our system lags so far behind every other industrialized country,” Sanders said. “We are going outside the traditional media to change that, to talk about the real issues affecting the American people.”

Sanders will hold his 90-minute town hall on Jan. 23 and will consist of three segments: one on current health care issues, one on how Medicare for all can have a positive economic and health impact, and one on how single-payer healthcare systems function in other areas of the globe.

This marks a new strategy going forward for progressives to use new online outlets rather than traditional media to reach their potential audiences. The Democratic National Committee has been producing a podcast called “Democrats Live” and also hosts a Facebook Live show with Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) on occasion.

If Sanders can show that using online streaming sources can be an effective way of getting a large message out, this may be something that other names in the progressive movement will look to replicate. More importantly, it may cause major news outlets to look for ways to get into the space as well.