Registered voters nationwide narrowly trust Mitt Romney over President Barack Obama to handle Medicare, according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll released Monday.
It isn't a massive advantage, but 45 percent prefer Romney to preside over the national health care system for senior citizens, compared with 42 percent who trust Obama more on the issue.
Medicare was supposed to be a problematic front for Romney following the selection of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) as his running mate earlier this month. Ryan's much-ballyhooed federal budget proposal included a plan to ultimately change Medicare into a voucher program, something that has consistently proven to be unpopular.
Overall, though, two-thirds of registered voters say Ryan’s selection will make no difference in their vote, while the rest divide essentially evenly on whether it makes them more or less likely to back the GOP ticket. And there is a risk: Registered voters by a broad 62-33 percent oppose Ryan’s proposal to restructure Medicare. To date that does not look to have impacted trust to handle the issue, about an even division between Obama and Romney. That’s in fact a plus for Romney, given the traditional Democratic advantage on Medicare. The question is how it plays out in the campaign ahead.
A poll commissioned by CNN and released Sunday night showed Obama and Romney running even on the question of who would be best to handle Medicare.