News / USA

Survey: Support for Obama's Healthcare Law Edges Up

Public health office staff members in Illinois work with people trying to sign up for health care coverage through the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, October 1, 2013.
Public health office staff members in Illinois work with people trying to sign up for health care coverage through the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, October 1, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Americans appear to be somewhat warmer to President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law, despite the troubled roll out of the government website that is essential for its success, a poll released on Wednesday found.
 
The Gallup survey showed people “are slightly more positive now” that they were shortly before the launch of healthcare.gov, which aims to allow consumers to enroll and shop on their own for a health insurance plan.
 
Still, 45 percent of those polled in mid-October said they generally approve of the law compared to 50 percent who said they disapprove, Gallup said. In August, 41 percent backed the health reform plan while 49 percent did not. The healthcare plan continues to polarize Republicans and Democrats.
 
The nationwide polling firm surveyed more than 1,500 adults between Oct. 18 to Oct. 20, amid the technical problems that have plagued the Affordable Care Act's insurance marketplace website, which launched Oct 1.
 
“This suggests that the poor performance of the health exchange sites may not at this point be negatively affecting Americans' views of the ACA overall,” Gallup researchers said of the survey, which questioned people just days after the partial government shutdown ended.
 
Gallup's poll also showed a gap in support between younger Americans, whose enrollment is seen as critical to the law's success, and those who are older and qualify for health insurance through the federal government's Medicare program.
 
More than half of 18- to 29-year olds - or 51 percent - backed the health reforms compared to 38 percent of those 65 and older, according to the poll, which has a margin-of-error rate of plus-or minus 3 percentage points.
 
The findings come as the Obama Administration scrambles to fix the website, promising a “tech surge” with a team of government and industry experts to fix the problem and offering other options such as telephone enrollment.
 
Republicans investigating

Republicans in Congress have also begun their own investigations of the website's problems. Conservatives have long opposed the law, also known as “Obamacare,” and made its defunding the focus of their political strategy, which led to the federal government shutdown earlier this month.
 
“The law remains one of the most polarizing issues Gallup has measured, with more than eight in 10 Democrats approving, while more than eight in 10 Republicans disapprove,” the polling firm said.
 
Later on Wednesday, health insurance industry executives will meet with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and White House officials, the White House said.
 
The Obama administration has also scheduled a briefing with Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives, some of whom have expressed concern with the program's troubles.
 
Gallup's poll showed the number of Democrats who embrace the measure has grown. In August, 71 percent of those who identified as Democrats said they favored the law compared to 83 percent in October. Slightly more political independents also said they backed it, while Republican numbers were largely unchanged.
 
Despite the increase in support for the health law, Gallup said its other research shows a majority of Americans still want lawmakers to modify it “in some way - repealing it entirely, scaling it back, or expanding it.”
 
Overall, most polls have show that a narrow majority of Americans oppose the healthcare law. A Reuters/Ipsos online poll on Tuesday showed 54 percent of people opposed the law while 46 percent favored it.

You May Like

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

Open Source Seeds Hit the Market, Raise Awareness

First open source seeds include 29 new varieties of broccoli, celery, kale, quinoa and other vegetables and grains More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid