Obamacare fails to gain support of American public

Teresa Tanoos's picture
Support for health care law has dropped significantly

New survey reveals a significant drop in support for Obama's health law.

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Americans are not supporting President Obama’s health care law, according to a new poll that shows public support for Obamacare has nose-dived to its lowest point since the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010.

The poll is based on an Associated Press-GfK survey that found only 26 percent of the nation supports Obamacare, but just 13 percent believe it will be repealed completely.

One in 7 Americans expect the federal law to be implemented with changes, with 42 percent expecting only minimal changes and 30 percent expecting them to be major.

When you combine the 42 percent who expect minor changes to come, with the 12 percent who think the law will be implemented as passed, you get a slight majority of 54 percent who believe that either minor changes are coming, or no changes whatsoever.

The AP-GfK survey was conducted prior to yesterday's announcement from the White House that new health insurance markets have exceeded the goal of getting 6 million people to sign up for Obamacare. Because the poll results preceded the Administration's announcement on Thursday, the potential impact of that news on public opinion didn't register.

Accordingly, what began last Oct. 1 – when open enrollment started with the disastrous roll out of the Obamacare website at HealthCare.gov – will apparently end this Monday on a brighter note than it began.

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Nevertheless, just 5 percent of those who took the survey think that the health insurance exchanges, which offer subsidized private plans to Americans without employer-sponsored insurance, have gone very well or extremely well.

Among the 12 percent who said that the exchanges went at least “somewhat well” last December, the number of Americans who say that now is 26 percent.

The survey also revealed that 59 percent of Americans said that either they or a member of their household had tried to sign up for coverage, but had problems.

Consequently, the ongoing problems that continued to plague HealthCare.gov for months has contributed to a drop in support for Obamacare since its passage in 2010. However, according to the survey, the drop is due to a decrease in support, not an increase in opposition.

When the health law passed four years ago, half of all Americans polled were opposed to it, compared with 39 percent who said that they supported the law and another 10 percent who weren’t sure.

Today, only 26 percent say they favor the law, which reflects a loss of 13 percentage points since the law passed four years ago. Another 43 percent say they are opposed to the law, reflecting a loss of seven percentage points since 2010.

However, among those on the fence, the percentage of Americans who neither support nor oppose the law has tripled to 30 percent.
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The AP-GfK Poll was administered between March 20 and March 24 by conducting online interviews with 1,012 American adults who were randomly selected.

SOURCE: Associated Press-GfK survey, AP-GfK Poll: Obama’s health care fails to gain support; Americans expect fixes, not repeal, published March 28, 2014.

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