Americans Are Increasingly Schizophrenic Over Health Care Reform

Health care reform repeal effort What do Americans think of health care reform? The short answer is "everything." According to a new survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health, Americans' views are all over the map.

As Republicans have stepped up efforts to repeal the health insurance reform law, the percentage of Americans who oppose it grew 9 points in January, the survey found. That means half of Americans are now against the law, compared to 41% who support it. But at the same time, a majority of those surveyed oppose the idea of defunding parts of the act.

In the survey of 1,502 adults in early January, about 28% said they want to expand the law, 19% want to keep it as is, 23% want to repeal and replace it and 20% just want to repeal it. Yet despite all the opposition, 62% of Americans -- including 38% of Republicans -- actually disapprove of defunding or otherwise changing parts of the law, according to the study.

"The public is frustrated with politics as usual, and may be saying that defunding a law is not how government should work," Mollyann Brodie, director of the Kaiser Foundation's Public Opinion and Survey Research group, said in a statement.

Deficit Concerns Continue

More than half of Americans believe the reform will entail too much government involvement, according to the survey, while 60% think it will add to the budget deficit, even though the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found the act would reduce the deficit.

Still, certain parts of the law remain highly popular: 85% of Americans favor the provision to gradually close the Medicare "doughnut hole"; 79% approve of providing health-insurance subsidies for low- and moderate-income Americans; 76% favor establishing a voluntary insurance program to help pay for long-term-care services; and 67% approve expanding Medicaid.

Conversely, 51% oppose the mandate for employers to offer health insurance or pay a penalty, and a whopping 76% oppose the individual mandate for nearly all Americans to obtain health coverage or face a fine.

The survey also found that about two-thirds of Americans are "very concerned" about the rising federal budget deficit and want Congress to act quickly to reduce it. (Democrats largely preferred to wait until the economy gets better.) Respondents said they prefer spending cuts over new taxes, but the survey found little consensus about where meaningful savings could be achieved.

"A Huge Gap in Basic Beliefs"


Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was easier to find agreement on where respondents don't want the reductions to come from. Nearly two-thirds of Americans, including large majorities among Republicans, oppose spending cuts in Social Security; 56% oppose Medicare reductions; and 47% oppose any cuts to Medicaid. Only the relatively small foreign-aid budget received support for major slashing.

"Budget experts say that the budget deficit cannot be tackled without taking on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid spending, or by raising taxes," Kaiser CEO Drew Altman said in a statement. "But the American people do not believe this at all. There is a huge gap in basic beliefs and understandings of the problem and what it takes to solve it."

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Meadhh

I am tired of paying for the entitlement thriving public. I have paid my share of taxes and I am also tired of paying for minorities that have illigitement children.
I believe these children should be taken to an institution and cared for. This would create jobs and their mothers can have them back when they prove they can support them. I will gladly help the children but not the breader for welfare funds. Repeal Obamacare!!! House, start defunding all entitlements except for vet and the disabled. Let the rest eat at the soup kitchens just like the rest of us.

January 27 2011 at 3:17 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
hi cat

We are sinking !! The 49% of electorate who do not work do not pay A a share of taxes in to the system, do not care about improving their OWN meaningless lives BY WORKING, have figured out ( WITH THE HELP OF THE LEFT WING COMMUNISTS IN THE MEDIA ) that they can vote in a Re-Distributor -in-chief, Kenyan and basically steal it from the rest of who HAVE WORKED AND SAVED and LIVED WITH IN OUR MEANS and never took a dime of Welfare, SSI or OTHER people's $$. We are too proud. WE ARE NOT GONNA LET YOU GET AWAY WITH LOAFERS !!

January 27 2011 at 3:03 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to hi cat's comment
sashajjjj

Those that work are not paying their fair share either! It was reported that 2010 saw the lowest revenue come into the coffers since 1950! A family making 50,000 dollars a year with two dependents pay no federal taxes and the rich have not paid so little in a hundred years. And for those working people who have saved, well, if you live long enough and are in a rest home for any length of time, your money will be gone in the blinck of an eye and uncle Sam will have to change your diaper anyway.

February 18 2011 at 8:41 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jerrytesar

It is interesting to hear so much about socialism when republicans and other members of the groups represented by Michelle Bachmann or Glenn Beck speak.
Yet, if socialism would sit on their faces they would not know what is it.
They think it is a system where wolves are running on the streets eating small children. And half the population thinks that they are smart people. Wow!
Obamacare needs to be improved and upgraded and than you may see some real savings. Too many entities and "nice people" have wested interests in the present system and they trying very hard to prevent any changes. If we can eliminate only some of the waste, fraud and thieves from the system we would be able to pay for most of the Obamacare. And if anyone wants to see how "socialist medicine" works,
please take your next vacation in France, Sweden or Germany and speak to locals.

January 27 2011 at 2:36 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
BUFFALO

You can't cheery pick this legislation for what
may or may not be popular and call it savable.
The legislation was ill conceived and poorly
construted. It was crafted by special intrests and
had no representation for right in this bill.
That means that the left excluded over half the country
when they crafted the legislation in ever aspect except
for the costs. Add to that the fact that no one knew what was hiding is the legislation before they voted on it and the real costs and
we have to start over you can not save any of it.

January 27 2011 at 11:57 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to BUFFALO's comment
cruising7388

Unfortunately, the health care act doesn't include the provision of dictionaries to illiterates.

January 27 2011 at 1:30 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
bhill72747

The real problems are going to surface when people actually begin to understand what this legislation entails. I recently heard that it provides for a 3.8% tax on homes sold after 2014 to be swallowed up to help pay for this law. What it sounds like to me is that this is just a huge tax increase on anyone who has or makes anything! Not rich people, but anyone who works hard and buys a home will be paying for healthcare for people who don't. More of the same from Democrats.

January 27 2011 at 10:29 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
js4977

schizophrenic is not an adjective; it is a serious medical condition that should not be used for headlines

January 27 2011 at 10:12 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Scott & Mary

Republicans MUST articulate their COMPLETE HEALTHCARE PLAN rather than just talk about defunding or repealing Obamacare. Talk about extending individual tax credits for purchase of healthcare to individuals, removing existing barriers to purchase of insurance accross state lines, purchasing pools, etc.. If they do not articulate what will replace Obamacare they will lose this battle.

Current plan is not sustainable no matter what the CBO "scores". Implementing new taxes/savings upfront before the law is inacted is simply wrong. And getting more disadvantaged people addicted to government programs is taking this country down a dangerous path.

If Obama is truly serious about the greatness of this country he will be open to implementing a new and improved plan. GET BUSY REPUBLICANS OR YOU WILL LOSE THIS ONE! PRESENT A TOTAL NEW PLAN NOT TALKING POINTS!

January 27 2011 at 9:20 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jbkdsk

My wife and I believe it is wrong to deny those Americans who cannot get insurance to be lost to the Republican ideas. Do we want all of those people to just die? NO. The Republicans have never been for the people even though they are willing to take everything good for themselves. Nothing in the world is more important than good health for all people. Without good health, you have nothing.

January 27 2011 at 8:50 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
golfjjsc

DOES ANYONE REALLY TRUST THE GOVERNMENT TO RUN OUR HEALTH CARE. COME ON FOLKS !! LOOK WHAT THEY HAVE DONE WITH SOCIAL SECURITY (THE SAFETY NET FOR MANY), THE POST OFFICE, AND,.... THEIR SEARCH FOR WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION.

January 27 2011 at 6:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to golfjjsc's comment
wfreeberg

Do you believe insurance companies are running healthcare correctly today. They are the ones that direct the operations of Hospitals.

January 27 2011 at 7:51 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Robert & Lisa

Our socialist public educational system has indoctrinated our children into believing capitalism and freedom is bad and socialism is good. If Socialism is so good, why does the long time socialist government of Mexico boast of being the #1 producer of silver, plenty of oil, and the richest man in the world, yet 99% of their people are in the poverty level making an average of less than 6 dollars a day. Corruption is rampant. The evil, ultra rich see Mexico and want to implement socialism here, where they can have all of the wealth and power and the middle class will now be among the poor. That is what their Demoncrat puppets in the white house and senate are doing to us.

January 27 2011 at 4:24 AM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Robert & Lisa's comment
panjo

You must be on drugs!!!

January 27 2011 at 1:03 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
sashajjjj

Please, control yourself. If you hate socialists so much I suggest you go to the nearest rest home and throw all those old people that depend on medicaid for healthcare and a roof over their heads out into the snow. By the way, If you two live long enough uncle Sam will be wiping your butt too.

February 18 2011 at 8:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply