Public Opinion Strategies recently conducted a national telephone survey on behalf of the Center for Health Transformation February 17-18, 20-21 , 2010 among 900 registered voters. The margin of error for a survey of this size is +3.3%.
Key Findings from this survey are:
- Americans have paid close attention to the health care debate as 85% say they have followed it closely with a very high 38% saying they have followed this debate “very closely.”
- American support for government-run coverage for all has declined, while the percentage believing health care is not the government’s responsibility has increased.
- The proposed changes to the health care system being developed by Congress and the Obama administration are now themselves on life support. A majority of Americans oppose this proposal.
- A majority of voters now say it would be better to not pass this plan and keep the current health care system.
- The focus on expanding coverage is fading as Americans are looking more at issues like controlling medical decisions, cost, and the role of insurers.
- A majority of voters say they agree more with Republicans “to start the reform process over and focus on areas of agreement and smaller pieces of legislation” rather than go forward with comprehensive health care reform.
- Make no mistake: The data suggests the public wants the two parties to work together and they do want action on health care.
- After hearing the strongest argument for comprehensive reform versus starting over, support for the Democrat position marginally improves. The Republican position to start over though continues to enjoy majority support and an intensity edge on strong support.
- When asked an open-ended question about the one or two reform ideas they would most like to see emerge from the meeting, Republicans and Independents would put medical liability much higher on the agenda than what is being discussed in Washington. The Democrat respondents focus on coverage for all, continue to be committed to a public option, and are much more negative and focused about the need to reform the health insurance industry and drug companies.
- Health care definitely has a political cut as we look towards November. Opposition to the current health care plan is especially high among voters who are most interested in the election, Independents, and is nearly universal among people who describe themselves as Tea Party supporters.