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Single-Payer Bill Fails In State Senate

The State Senate has rejected the latest effort to create a single-payer health care system in California.

The measure failed 19-to-14 - two votes shy of the 21 needed for passage. Several moderate Democrats either abstained or voted no. Of the Democrats who voted yes, many expressed concerns over the bill's cost. But Senator Joe Simitian said he based his vote on a more basic question.

"Does every Californian have the right to access quality, affordable health care? Yea or nay? On that question, I am a yea," Simitian stated.

Republicans like Senator Ted Gaines were united in opposition.

"We simply don't need to go down a path of rationing our health care in California," said Gaines. "It hasn't worked in other places around the world. I don't think we want to follow the model of Europe."

The bill could be voted on again, but it faces a Tuesday deadline to pass the Senate.

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