December 22nd, 2009
10:33 AM ET
8 months ago

Polls: Majority oppose heath care bill

New polls show Americans are opposed to the Senate Health Care bill.
New polls show Americans are opposed to the Senate Health Care bill.

Washington (CNN) - For the second straight day, a new national poll indicates that a solid majority of Americans oppose the health care bill that Democrats are pushing through the Senate.

According to a Quinnipiac University survey released Tuesday morning, 53 percent of the public disapproves of the proposed changes, with 36 percent supporting the bill.

That follows a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll released Monday that indicated 42 percent favor the Senate Democrats' legislation, with 56 percent opposed.

Both surveys were conducted last week through Sunday, as Senate Democrats were negotiating a final health care bill, but before a crucial party-line vote early Monday morning to end debate, a huge hurdle to eventual passage of the legislation that the Democrats successfully were able to jump.

According to the Quinnipiac poll, Americans by an 18-point margin disapprove of the job President Barack Obama's doing on health care.

"As President Barack Obama's numbers on health care have declined so has his margin over Republicans on whom American voters trust most on the issue," says Peter Brown, Assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "In July he enjoyed a 20-point edge on the trust question, and that margin has been narrowing, to 45 – 40 percent today."

The Quinnipiac survey also indicates that while a majority of Americans oppose the health care plan, they back two options that were cut from the Senate bill. According to the poll, 56 percent support the option of getting coverage through a government health insurance plan, with 38 percent opposing the public option. And nearly two-thirds like the proposal to allow people as young as 55 to buy into the government run Medicare program, with three in ten opposed.

The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted December 15-20, with 1,616 registered voters from across the country questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.4 percentage points.

–Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn


Filed under: Health care
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Matt H.

    It's definitely time to take Harry Reid off of the Sentate health care plan and let him fend for himself like regular Americans.

    December 22, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  2. IndyVoter

    WHY, CNN, WHY? WHY do 56% of the people oppose the Healthcare Bill? Did it occur to you to provide those details? Its simple Math:

    – The country is split in half 50% Republicans, 50% Democrats.
    – Almost all 50% of the Republicans oppose it
    – If even 1% of centrist or moderate Democrats oppose it, that would make it a majority.
    – There is a SIZABLE number of far left Liberal Democrats who do NOT LIKE THE CHANGES (specifically taking out the public option or not having single payer).
    – So that equals 56%
    – THAT DOES NOT MEAN THAT 56% OF AMERICANS AGREE WITH THE REPUBLICANS OR DON'T WANT A PUBLIC OPTION.

    * Democrats will ultimately rally around the Healthcare Bill. CNN, Stop trying to fan the Republican flames and lies that the majority of Americans don't like the bill because of the same reasons Republicans do.

    December 22, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  3. LIP

    Your point is?
    Evidently the Democrats just don't get it that the majority don't want this package in it's current form. The American public would actually like them to read it word for word so everyone knows what it is all about. Maybe then there would be a consensus of trust that seems to be lacking. Meanwhile, the backslapping and stuffing of individual pockets continues, to "buy" needed votes for passage. So we have fat cat Senators, with their own health care program and retirement package, totally unrelated to ours and we pay for all of it...what a deal.

    December 22, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  4. Dianne Lammers

    I fear the health care bill is highly overrated for cutting costs and keeping the doctor you like. But by the time pro ObamaCare people wake up, it will be too late. What we need to do is pass Congressional term limits using a 2/3 vote of the states. The Dems are utterly arrogant. It is time for Real change.

    December 22, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  5. Steve

    But..but...but...Americans want health care reform! Haven't we told them often enough for them to start believing it?

    This is hilarious. November 2010 cannot get here quickly enough. Throw the bums out.

    December 22, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  6. michigander

    Maybe in DC the bill was passed by negotiation, but here in the Midwest where truth and honesty still have some value, it sure smells like blackmail and bribery that enabled the Health Care bill to get as far as it has. It is a tragety our country"s leaders have sunk so low as to actually believing the American public is so stupid that we would accept such a lame explaination for under the table wheeling and dealing that has come out of Washington since electing a new President and Congress. If this is President Obama's idea of change, wait and see what the American voters do in the next couple of elections. I think the President can kiss his Democratic majority good-by and probably his home on Pennsylvania Ave. in a couple of years.

    December 22, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  7. Julia - Native American from Idaho

    This bill will still leave 25 million people without health care. This country is a disgrace and has basically taken the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and used both as toilet paper. The politicians in this country are the most selfish arrogant people in the world. We need a political revolution to take our country back and ensure that it is "For the People,"and "By the People," not "By the Insurance Companies" and Corporations" and "For the Insurance Companies , Politicians and Corporations," Every American should hang their head in shame. When you deliberately ignore the sick and suffering and deny them the right to health care, you are committing a mortal sin of omission. God help us all.

    December 22, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  8. Julia - Native American from Idaho

    This bill will still leave 25 million people without health care. This country is a disgrace and has basically taken the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and used both as toilet paper. The politicians in this country are the most selfish arrogant people in the world. We need a political revolution to take our country back and ensure that it is "For the People,"and "By the People," not "By the Insurance Companies" and Corporations" and "For the Insurance Companies , Politicians and Corporations," Every American should hang their head in shame. When you deliberately ignore the sick and suffering and deny them the right to health care, you are committing a mortal sin of omission. God help us all...

    December 22, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  9. Dan, TX

    Yes, lobbyists do rule America. Americans don't know what's in the bill and FEAR is easy to generate, while explaining what is in the bill and getting people to understand it is not so easy.

    However, when you explain to people individually what is in the bill and why, answer all their questions, and explain what the consequences of doing nothing are, 72% of Americans support the bill.

    December 22, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  10. Dan Holiday

    This just goes to show you how much the democrats care about the opinions of American people. They want to push their agendas as if they know what is best for us, yet they refuse to take their own medicine. Are they going to take the same health care they are forcing upon us? These people are so out of touch with anyone but the super wealthy power brokers of this country. They act as though they are one of the common folks, but last time I checked the common folks don't have millions of dollars in the bank, million dollar homes, a guaranteed pension for life, maids and servants, summer homes, 100k dollar cars, Hollywood friends, the ability to take multiple vacations every year to wherever they please, and the list goes on and on. These people are vile and do not respect us. They only want power and money. They want to create the rules, but do not want to live by them. Wake up America. These people need to go. Vote them out. Send THEM to the unemployment line.

    December 22, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  11. Three headed dog--Obama, Pelosi and Reid

    And I've seen the poll numbers as high as 65% opposing the healthcare bill with only 31% supporting it. So, if the bill has so much opposition, why are the democrats bribing, threatening, backroom deals and strong-arming to get it passed so quickly?

    They just want something in place so that over time, they can force their will (and legislation) on their fellow Americans. It is the only explanation because the bill doesn't cover over 15M uninsured Americans, it will raise the premiums, increase the debt (they lie, we all know it will) and put private businesses out of business.

    For the first time in my life, I think that Democrats are dishonest, corrupt, power-hungry, and borderline evil. And that they really don't care about our country or the people.

    December 22, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  12. 2TallTex

    Government by the People and for the People .... where are the Patriots when we need them? The People have mad it clear that they do not want this bill to pass. Yes, we all want to fix our healthcare system ... but not by wrecking it!

    Folks, look at how this bill is being shoved through without adequate discussion and oversight. Where's the "transparency" candidate Obama promise? Where's the 5 days we were supposed to get to be able to read through any bills? All this is being done behind closed doors ... with a rush-through that very few bills see, muc less one of this cost and magnitude of impact.

    Notice how the Dems have "cooked" the books by not having the Bill become effective until 2013, but collecting taxes starting now. This, plus the cut in Medicare and not reporting the cost of $250M + promised to doctors, skews the real cost of this Bill. CBO reports that this bill will not be a budget killer only because they report on the numbers given to them ... they have no say over the method used to arrive at those numbers.

    This is not about who's Dem or Rep .... it's about a Government that is ramming something down the throats of their constituents!!

    Call your Congressman/woman now!!

    December 22, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  13. Gary

    CNN, can you do some responsible reporting and dig deeper into these polls please? Of the majority that is "opposed" to the health care bill is a large % of Democrats and Liberals that feel it hasn't gone far enough and is a give away to the insurance companies. That is very different than the typical Republican/Conservative who is opposed to ANY meaningful health care reform that would help the American people.

    December 22, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  14. JOHN

    This 'poll' is a lie.
    The vast majority
    of Americans want
    health care. The poll
    played with wording to
    get the result CNN wants.......

    CNN. To the right we go!

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  15. Jack

    this is only the begining for bad news on this inept administration.will get worse day by day because axelsod dos not pay attention to the polls and the despare of the people.obama will get up one day with lower rate than bush.tha t will be a nightmare.i think we should get medvedev to run this country.

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  16. Andy Bunker

    Hey Democrats ..... You WILL pay a price next November. The entire House and those of you in the Senate who are up for re-election should NOT be ordering any new drapes for your offices. Enjoy this while you can because your day of reckoning is coming. The electorate will have the final say!

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  17. alpha_nu_916

    blah blah blah . . . at one time a majority of the public opposed racial integration at schools, more meaningless polls conducted by people with far too much time on their hands.

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  18. Right Leaning Independent

    Investors Business Daily: Trial Lawyers Win Added Clout From Democrats In Health Bill
    The Senate health care bill includes a gift to trial lawyers: a five-year, $50 million program to encourage states to consult with them on "alternatives" to malpractice claims. Though presented as a reform, critics say the program will simply encourage states to create an additional option for lawyers and plaintiffs to pursue claims, without requiring them to give up anything in return.
    -------
    This was on CNN Ticker – and people wonder why folks are against this bill. This should leave no doubt that Dems are in bed with Trial Lawyers! Not only was Tort Reform not considered, the Dems even went as far as making it easier for Lawyers pursue claims! Dems = Hypocrites!

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  19. Sniffit

    the chickens are comming home to roost

    the tax man is gonna get ya

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  20. SY

    Give it a rest, CNN. You and your daily polls are ridiculous. You might as well be polling how many people are constipated or have diarhea on a daily basis. Those results would be more accurate.

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  21. Another Reformed Republican

    Polls change daily depending on what the talk shows and cable news runs as stories.

    As far as healthcare polls go, the non-thinking Republican base believe whatever their non-thinking (or incapable of thinking) leaders tell them. Most of the rest of the electorate does not care one way or the other, hence the results of the polls.

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  22. Obama's Banana Republic

    If this was just such a great deal for American's you can bet your sweet arse the Democrat thugs would have it on at prime time with the Main Street Media.
    No, it's a horrible bill so they have to slip it in, in the dead of night like the snakes they are. It will be our turn to vote November 2010 you bunch of thugs.

    December 22, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  23. Zac in ATL

    So people hate the bill because Democrats caved. It's a conservative bill that *nobody* likes, as opposed to a progressive bill that just conservatives couldn't tolerate. Good job Dems!

    December 22, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  24. Mark

    Could a headline and initial interpretation be more misleading.
    It is not until the second last paragraph that you mention that 56 percent support the public option and 2 thirds the medicare buy in.

    This is not some great victory for the anti health care reform Republicans, people are disappointed that the bill does not go far enough.
    That headline could just as easily read "Poll reveals Americans want more Health care reform than politicians deliver"

    December 22, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  25. Judy

    I am very disapointed in the Senate. I think rushing a health care bill through the Senate before the xmas break is ridiculous I voted for Obama but I think his ego is getting in the way of what the American public want. Why is there such a rush?
    I had lived in NH for 40 years and recently moved to Maine. I agree with the Maine Senators -not everyone understands the health care bill. Why is the public kept in the dark????
    h

    December 22, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12