Health care polls remain stubborn
By Ben Pershing
The story of health-care reform since the summer has been nothing less than epic. There have been tea parties and blowups in Congress, tens of millions spent on television ads and many millions more on lobbyists and PR campaigns. The public option appeared dead, then came back to life while abortion and immigration flashed into serious controversies. The House passed its reform bill, the most sweeping social legislation approved by the chamber in decades, and now the Senate is struggling toward its own debate.
But through all that turmoil, there is one element of the reform saga that really hasn't changed much -- the polls.
The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll "shows Americans deeply divided over the proposals under consideration and majorities predicting higher costs ahead," with 48 percent supporting Democrats' reform plans and 49 percent opposed. Those numbers are close to unchanged from the same poll taken three months ago, which had 45 percent in support and 50 percent opposed. In that survey, a combined 67 percent of respondents felt strongly one way or the other, while the new poll puts the number at 69 percent. ABC News notes the "essentially even split" despite the fact that "negatives abound: Fifty-four percent of insured Americans think it'll increase their own costs; among all, 56 percent think it'll raise overall costs, six in 10 think it could shut down many private insurers and 61 percent oppose covering abortions in federally supported plans."
November 17, 2009; 8:36 AM ET
Categories: The Rundown
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