Sanders Addresses Emotional Veteran Who Threatened Suicide over Crippling Medical Debt

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speaks to several hundred people while campaigning for president at a town hall meeting at the Carson City Convention Center, Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, in Carson City, Nev. He said former Vice President Joe Biden is distorting Sanders' "Medicare for All" health care plan. (AP Photo/Scott …
AP Photo/Scott Sonner

A veteran battling Huntington’s disease told Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) – who held a town hall in Carson City, Nevada, on Friday – that he is considering suicide due to the crippling amount of medical debt he has accumulated.

The veteran spoke at Sanders’ campaign event, telling the presidential candidate that he lost his health care coverage due to an “administrative mistake” and is now considering suicide due to the thousands of dollars – roughly $140,000 – he owes in medical bills.

“Now they’re saying that I didn’t re-sign or do something,” he told Sanders at the event. “I’m going to kill myself”:

“Stop it, you’re not going to kill yourself,” Sanders said, ultimately asking the man to speak with him privately following the event. According to CNN, Sanders and his wife ended up speaking to him following the town hall’s conclusion.

The details of their conversation are not immediately known, but CNN analyst Mark McKinnon praised the way Sanders handled the emotional situation.

“Also gave Sanders an opportunity to show humanity, which he doesn’t do very often,” McKinnon said. “I mean, he’s just this policy-driven guy but he handled that the right way: ‘I got you. Let’s do it quietly and alone.’”

“He didn’t try and take advantage of the moment for himself publicly on TV. And took it away quietly. Which is the right way. It was a great moment for him,” he added.

Sanders took direct aim at Joe Biden’s (D) health care proposal during the town hall at the Carson City Community Center.

“Apparently the Vice President thinks it’s just wonderful for people to be paying thousands of dollars per month in premiums and paying the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs,” Sanders, who has pushed Medicare for All as a key part of his policy platform, said.

“Well, I think those are problems,” he added, according to the Reno Gazette Journal.

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