On the Doorstep With a Plea: Will You Support Medicare for All?

Those conversations keep coming. Rick Plowman 66, complained bitterly about how despite having Medicare, he had to pay nearly $500 for inhalers to treat his chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Still, he was skeptical.

“I just don’t know what it’s going to look like down the road,” Mr. Plowman said. “Even Social Security for kids, you know? Even for you guys?”

“I’m willing to start making that sacrifice right now,” Mr. Meier pushed back. Mr. Plowman signed the petition.

At a white bungalow around the corner, Mr. Meier found — finally — that he was preaching to the choir with Bobby Daniels, 50, and his wife, Andrea, 46. Mr. Daniels, a forklift operator from Waterloo, said their coverage came with a $3,000 deductible and he would “most definitely” support Medicare for all. Ray Edwards, 36, an uninsured barber, also heartily signed on.

At the final stop of the day, Mr. Meier and Ms. Moss encountered Jeremy Shade, 36, a registered Republican who promptly told them his sister lived in Canada and had spent “hours and hours in the hospital, waiting for care” under that country’s single-payer system.

“I get that concern, and it’s something I’m worried about, too,” Mr. Meier said as Mr. Shade’s dog barked. “Would you be interested in maybe just calling Abby Finkenauer and saying, ‘Hey, what are we doing about the health care problem in this country?’”

“My wife would,” Mr. Shade said, explaining that she was a Democrat. “I’m real wary about it.”

Two hours of hot canvassing amid swarms of gnats had yielded six petition signatures and a few pledges to call Ms. Finkenauer. Mr. Meier was determined to end on a positive note. “I really think health care could be the issue that could get people to stop being so on one side or the other,” he said, a point that Mr. Shade accepted, shaking his hand before retreating inside.