Health Care Is Second Most Important Issue Behind Iraq In Presidential Campaign

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Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: Election 2008, Kaiser Family Foundation:According to the latest tracking poll, health care ranks second behindthe war in Iraq as an issue that Democrats, independents andRepublicans want presidential candidates to discuss. Among Republicans,30% name health care as one of the top two issues -- the highestpercentage recorded for the group since the tracking poll began inMarch.

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The latest information also finds that health care is of greaterimportance to women and that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton(D-N.Y.) has solidified her lead as the candidate most associated withhealth care issues. The poll also shows Democrats, Republicans andindependents want to hear the candidates talk about somewhat differentissues.

When asked to pick from a list of issues, Republicans by atwo-to-one margin say they'd rather hear about reducing health carecosts (44%) than expanding coverage for the uninsured (21%).Independents are slightly more likely to pick costs (39%) over coverage(30%), while Democrats are split between the two (41% say coverage, 38%costs). Fewer people say they want to hear candidates discuss qualityof care and medical errors (15% overall), or reducing governmentspending on health programs (7%). The poll is available online.

Thepoll is part of a broader effort by the Kaiser Family Foundation toprovide a central hub for resources and information about health policyissues in the 2008 election. More information is available online at www.health08.org (Kaiser Family Foundation release, 10/26).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. Youcan view the entire Kaiser DailyHealth Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email deliveryat kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily HealthPolicy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The HenryJ. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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