What Waterloo? Opposition To Health Care Reform Declines

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Health care reform turned an important political corner. A Gallup poll released yesterday finds that, for the first time in months, more Americans say that the Affordable Care Act is a good thing than think it’s a bad thing. And, though TPM’s PollTracker still finds that, on average, health care reform still has fewer supporters than opponents, support for reform has been growing (and opposition to it shrinking) uninterrupted for months.

Today’s Gallup poll finds that 49 percent of respondents were in favor of the new health care law and 46 percent were opposed. Previous polls showed that support for reform trailed opposition: for instance, a June 13 USA Today/Gallup poll showed the split at 46 percent for and 49 percent against. On April 11, the split was 45-49.Gallup was careful to warn people against reading too deeply into the new numbers.

The 49% of Americans who today say passage of healthcare reform was a good thing, compared with 46% calling it a bad thing, is a bit more positive than the two prior readings in which the slight plurality called it a bad thing,” Gallup notes. “However, the four percentage-point increase since April in favorability toward the law, from 45% to 49%, is not statistically significant.

However, aggregate polling data finds that, overall, health care reform has been getting noticeably more popular, and opposition is the lowest it’s been in months. Ezra Klein at the Washington Post noted, “the bill’s spread looks better than at any point in the past year.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com
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