CNN poll gives ammunition to both sides in health care battle
CNN's latest health care poll, released Monday, has been in the political crossfire all week. Conservatives are using it as proof the policy is unpopular while liberals say it is an example for more aggressive policy on national health care.
As mentioned at the time, the national survey found that "a majority of Americans still oppose the nation's new health care measure, three years after it became law."
But as was pointed out immediately in the second paragraph of our wire story, "a CNN/ORC International poll released Monday also indicates that more than a quarter of those who oppose the law, known by many as Obamacare, say they don't support the measure because it doesn't go far enough."
As you can imagine, after the poll went up online, opponents of the Affordable Care Act highlighted the first number in the survey, that 54% of Americans say they oppose the law.
But it's far from the whole story.
Supporters of the law point to the second number in the survey: That 35% oppose the health care law because it's too liberal, with 16% saying they oppose the measure because it isn't liberal enough. Add that 16% to the 44% who say they favor the law and that means that six in ten either support the law or don't think it goes far enough. Or in other words, 60% are on the other side of the most vocal conservative critics of Obamacare.
"It's sometimes difficult to remember, but at the start of the health care debate in 2009, many Democrats wanted nothing less than a single-payer system and were extremely disappointed when that approach was not part of the new law. That disappointment seems to have persisted among some groups," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
CNN/ORC has been asking the over "support/oppose" question and the "too liberal/not liberal enough" breakdown since March 2010, before the bill was passed by a then Democrat controlled Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama. The responses to both questions have stayed pretty much the same ballpark over the three year period.
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