Vermont has started Single Payer health care. This article, from 2011, aptly sums it up: Vermont Passes Single-Payer Health Care, World Doesn't End.
Americans have a problem understanding anything that doesn't fit squarely within the Democrat/Republican ideology, and the media ensures the dialog remains polarized. Fortunately, Vermont has Bernie Sanders, an Independent, to go to bat for them in the Senate. His famous quote on the subject is "if you are serious about real healthcare reform, the only way to go is single-payer."