10 of History's Boldest Presidential Promises

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1945: Harry Truman

Universal Healthcare:

"Everyone should have ready access to all necessary medical, hospital and related services."

After he succeeded FDR as President in April 1945, and with the end of World War II shortly thereafter, President Truman announced in a special message to the U.S. Congress his desire for a new national health care program. Truman's attempt to bring about nationalized health care was defeated. Several factors contributed to the failure, including America's preoccupation with the Cold War and the Korean War and opposition from Congressional conservatives and the American Medical Association.

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