New Polls Find Support for Health Reform, Fear of CostsA series of new polls this week show support for major health care reform, but trepidation about certain policy proposals, and anxiety about quickly growing health care costs, the possibility of losing coverage, and the federal budget deficit in general.
Associated Press: A poll by the University of Michigan has found that "nearly half of all Americans worried about paying for future [health] care," while one-quarter fear losing their insurance coverage, and about as many said they had delayed care this year because of cost concerns. The poll was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Kerr, 6/17).
Wall Street Journal: "On health care, the public remains open to persuasion. Without being told anything specific about [President Obama's] plan in the survey, about a third of people said it's a good idea, about a third said it's a bad idea and the rest had no opinion. When given several details of his approach, 55% said they favored it, versus 35% who were opposed," according to a new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll. Support for a public health insurance plan reached nearly 75 percent when no details were given, but less than half preferred specific arguments supporting the plan to those critical of it (Meckler, 6/18).
New York Times: "Fewer than half of Americans [said] they approve of how [Obama] has handled health care," according to a new New York Times/CBS poll, though an even smaller portion, 34 percent compared with 44 percent, said they disapprove. A majority also said the government should stop spending money to stimulate the economy because of a growing deficit (Zeleny, 6/17).
San Francisco Chronicle: In California, "A robust majority - 71 percent - of registered voters said they wanted the system changed or rebuilt. That sentiment was shared across political parties, with 82 percent of Democrats, 73 percent of non-partisans and 55 percent of Republicans supporting a major overhaul," according to a new Field Poll. However, they were less likely to be willing to pay for it. An only slightly smaller majority said now was the time for reform, but only half were willing to pay higher taxes (Colliver, 6/18).
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