Passage of the health care reform package has not done much to change public opinion about it, with 50 percent of Americans opposed to the legislation and 46 percent supporting it, according to a Washington Post/ABC News poll
conducted March 23-26. An overwhelming number of those opposed saying they would support rolling back the changes either in Congress or the courts.
The poll also found a low enthusiasm level for the changes and a high skepticism level about whether they would
improve the system overall or change peoples' coverage and care for the better.
Eighty percent of Americans regard the overhaul as a major change in the direction of the country, and of those, 42 percent call it a negative chance and 38 percent called it positive. Sixteen percent did not regard the overhaul as a major change of direction.The margin of opposition and support on health care was mostly unchanged from previous Post/ABC polls dating back to December. Of the 50 percent opposed, 40 percent described themselves as "strongly" opposed" while of the 40 percent in favor, 32 percent said they were "strongly" in favor. However, as an indication that the Democratic base may have come together more as final action on the measures loomed, the 32 percent who strongly favored the proposals was an increase from the 22 percent in that category in the last two Post/ABC polls.
Eighty-six percent of those opposed said they would support efforts to repeal the legislation
, as some leading Republicans have vowed, or to block it in the courts
as a group of state attorneys general have said they'd try.
Fifteen percent of those polled said they were enthusiastic about the changes enacted by Congress, 32 percent described themselves as satisfied, 26 percent said they were dissatisfied and 26 percent said they were angry. While some different words were used, these results were similar to what Gallup found
in a poll conducted March 22.
When it comes to expectations, 60 percent believe the measure will require them to make changes to their coverage while 35 percent don't, with 5 percent undecided. Forty-four percent believe the overall health care system will get worse, 35 percent say it will stay about the same and 18 percent believe it will improve, with 3 percent undecided. Forty-two percent believe the their own insurance coverage will get worse, 38 percent believe it will remain about the same and 17 percent say it will get better, with 3 percent undecided.
However, a plurality -- 48 percent -- say it will improve peoples' chances to get health insurance compared to 25 percent who say it will not and 25 percent say things will remain about the same.
Sixty-three percent do not believe the Republicans made a good faith effort to work with Obama and the Democrats on health care. They were split on whether Obama made a good faith effort to work with Republicans, with 48 percent saying he did and 47 percent saying he didn't.
How will it effect Americans' decision on who they will vote for in the midterm elections? As in other polls, a plurality -- 40 percent -- said it wouldn't make a difference on whether their lawmaker supported the legislation, 32 percent said they'd oppose that legislator and 32 percent would support him or her.
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