P0lling data from around mid-January 2011 from CBS (AP–GfK Poll) contrasts sharply with the University of New Hampshire Survey Center Poll released on February 10. The most striking difference is the response to the question, Should the reform be repealed. The UNH poll asks the question, Do you think Congress should try to repeal the health care law that was passed last year, or should they let it stand? Only these two choices and “don’t know” are available. The NH results: 52% favor repeal, 41% let stand, and 7% are undecided.
What is interesting about the AP-GfK survey is that repeal is one choice among five choices. The results, “repeal it completely” gathers support from only 26%, down from a high of 37% back in October 2010. “Leave as it” has the support of 19%.
Here is the kicker, “Change it so that it does MORE to change the health care system” has the support of 43%. I believe that it’s fair to say that the total percent of positive support for health care reform is a combination of “leave as is” and “do more” — a whopping 62%. The UNH Survey Center poll is misleading if one interprets the 52% wanting repeal as a rejection of health care reform. The complete AP-GfK poll results, including past polls, is available at the link at the top of the page under “Raw Emotions Ease over Obama’s Health care Overhaul”.
Ahead of a vote on repeal in the GOP-led House this week, strong opposition to the law stands at 30 percent, close to the lowest level registered in AP-GfK surveys dating to September 2009.
The nation is divided over the law, but the strength and intensity of the opposition appear diminished. The law expands coverage to more than 30 million uninsured, and would require, for the first time, that most people in the United States carry health insurance.
The poll finds that 40 percent of those surveyed said they support the law, while 41 percent oppose it. Just after the November congressional elections, opposition stood at 47 percent and support was 38 percent.
As for repeal, only about one in four say they want to do away with the law completely. Among Republicans support for repeal has dropped sharply, from 61 percent after the elections to 49 percent now.