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California Legislature

Single-payer healthcare backers fan out at California Capitol to protest shelving of bill

Supporters of a stalled single-payer healthcare bill returned to the Capitol in Sacramento on Monday to express their anger that Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Paramount) shelved the measure more than a week ago.

Backers of the bill, SB 562, disrupted a separate hearing on the Assembly floor by unfurling a banner from the gallery before being escorted out. They also attended a hearing of the Assembly Rules Committee, the panel in which Rendon held back the bill, holding up signs on which they'd written personal healthcare stories. And a small contingent staged a "sit-in" near Rendon's office, chanting "SB 562."

Rendon called the bill "woefully incomplete" and has shown no appetite to advance the bill, but Pilar Schiavo, an organizer with Healthy California, an advocacy group backing the measure, said supporters plan to keep up the pressure.

"We continue to build. There is incredible grassroots movement around this," Schiavo said, adding of the enthusiasm around single-payer, "it's too late to put it back in the box."

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