Efforts to Repeal and Replace the ACA Boost the Current Law’s Support

Tuesday, June 6, 2017 at 5:23 PM by

Polling Shows Public Opposition to House Bill and to Medicaid Changes

The more that Congress extends the debate about the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the stronger support gets for the existing law. And as people learn more about the American Health Care Act (AHCA), which is the bill the House passed last month that would repeal and replace the ACA, the more they dislike the House plan.

The latest survey results from the Kaiser Health Tracking Poll show that the majority of Americans, 55 percent, are not pleased with AHCA.   The poll also found that:

    • 55% of the public want the Senate to make major changes to the bill or just not pass it all.
    • Only 31% view the AHCA favorably, vs 49% who view the ACA favorably.

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The poll also finds that the public’s perceptions of how they, personally, will be affected by the changes to the ACA, are gloomier since a poll in December that asked about changes to the ACA.

  • 45% of the public say that the AHCA would result in higher health care costs, compared to 28% in a December poll.
  • 34% say that their ability to get and keep health insurance will be worse under the proposed legislation, vs 21% in December.
  • 34% also say that the quality of their health care will go down because of the changes contained in the AHCA, vs 19% in December.

The majority of Americans polled, 63%, say the blame for any problems with the ACA going forward, would go to President Trump and Republicans in Congress. That finding should give pause to any lawmakers who may think that they can partially accomplish their objectives and avoid adverse political fallout by sabotaging the ACA insurance Marketplace, rather than passing the AHCA.

Another recent Kaiser Health Tracking poll looked more specifically at the public’s views on changes that AHCA and the President’s budget proposefor Medicaid. The newest polling finds that:

  • Almost six in ten Americans (58%) say that Medicaid is important to their family.
  • 84% of the public support continued funding for Medicaid expansion.
  • 71% think that Medicaid should continue to be funded as it is today.

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The strong public opposition to AHCA seems to have played a significant role in slowing the bill’s passage in the House, but did not ultimately derail it. The outcome could be different in the Senate, which has had more time to consider both the substance of that legislation and the growing public opposition to the House bill.

As senators analyze the bill and consider the public resistance to AHCA, let’s hope that they take note of the even stronger opposition to the proposed changes to Medicaid, which President Trump has also included in his 2018 budget proposal.

Sashi Gregory and Jon Peacock

Categories: Blog, FEDERAL BUDGET & TAXES, federal issues, HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES, health care reform, Medicaid | Comments Off on Efforts to Repeal and Replace the ACA Boost the Current Law’s Support

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