A new Kaiser Family Foundation health tracking poll dealt a blow to Republicans by finding that support for repealing the ACA has hit an all time of low of 31%.
There is bad news all over the place for Republicans in the poll, “When it comes to next steps on the law, a majority say it should be kept in place, including 48 percent who want Congress to work to improve it and 8 percent who say it should be kept as is. Fewer say Congress should repeal the law and replace it with a Republican-sponsored alternative (12 percent) or repeal it and not replace it (19 percent).”
To put it another way, the only issue that the Republicans thought they had in their favor in 2014 has turned against them. The GOP has it all wrong. The majority doesn’t think that Obamacare is a job killing monstrosity that must be killed today. Most people want the law to stay in place, but they also want political leaders to improve it.
While 48% of respondents want the law to be worked on and improved, only 12% support the Republicans’ big idea that they can replace Obamacare with their own alternative. The American people have taken a contradictory view of the ACA. By a margin of 47% to 35%, the law itself remains unpopular, but a majority (56%) don’t want the law repealed or replaced.
It is very possible that a majority may never warmly embrace the ACA, but they also understand the need for healthcare reform, so they don’t want the law to go away either. It is a complicated position, and Republicans have set themselves up for total failure by embracing such a black and white approach to the ACA.
The good news for Democrats is that candidates who run on improving the ACA are likely to get a warm reception from voters. Since Republicans refuse to do anything that would keep the existing law in place, Democrats have an uncontested playing field when it comes to improving the law.
A majority wants this country to move forward on healthcare reform, but they understand that Obamacare is not the perfect finished policy product.
This adds up to a win for President Obama and the Democrats.
The Republican Party’s worst nightmare has always been that Obamacare would grow in popularity over time. The ACA isn’t getting more popular, but the actual healthcare reform law is growing in support. This is disastrous news for Republicans who have based the entire election strategy for 2014 and 2016 on getting rid of Obamacare.
The American people are speaking, and they want their affordable healthcare to be here to stay.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association