The New York Times sort of buried this over the weekend, but reform advocates have taken note–a vast majority of Americans favor a major overhaul of the U.S. health care system, including the creation of a government-run public insurance option.
The poll found that most Americans would be willing to pay higher taxes so everyone could have health insurance and that they said the government could do a better job of holding down health-care costs than the private sector….
The national telephone survey, which was conducted from June 12 to 16, found that 72 percent of those questioned supported a government-administered insurance plan — something like Medicare for those under 65 — that would compete for customers with private insurers. Twenty percent said they were opposed.
The news has helped to shift the politics back into favorable territory for reformers after a week of bad news had many concerned–however briefly–that the public option was dead in the water. Democrats want a bill ready for President Obama’s signature before the August Congressional recess, and the intervening month promises to be full of political whiplash along these lines. More on that in just a bit.