AEI Special Poll Report Health Care

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Dr. Jim Spears speaks with Sarah Ittner, a New York-based actor who does not have health coverage, at the Actors Fund's Al Hirschfeld Free Health Clinic on Mar.23, 2011 in New York City.

A week before oral arguments for and against portions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act are presented AEI Special Poll Report Health Care

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before the Supreme Court of the United States, American Enterprise Institute (AEI) senior fellow and public opinion expert Karlyn Bowman and researcher Andrew Rugg release their latest compilation of polls on attitudes towards health care.

This unique compilation distills and compares data from ten major pollsters. It shows that:

  • American opinion of the health care law is evenly divided (41 % favorable vs. 40% unfavorable -March Kaiser poll); (47% approving vs. 45% disapproving - March Pew poll) in most recent polls.
  • In most polls, President Obama's marks on handling health care are more negative than positive. Still, the public has more confidence in the Democrats than the Republicans to handle the issue.
  • Most people do not believe the federal government should be able to require all Americans to buy health insurance. In December 2011, for example, 84% did not think the federal government should have this power. In August 2010 83% gave that response (AP-GfK/Roper poll). In a December 2011 and March 2012 Kaiser polls, majorities said the Supreme Court should rule this unconstitutional.
  • Depending on question wording, people express different views about what should happen to the law now. In the March 2012 Pew poll, 33 percent wanted to expand it, 38 percent repeal it, and 20 percent leave it as it is. This response has been consistent in four Pew questions asked since November 2010.

 

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