January 18th, 2010
03:02 PM ET
8 years ago

New poll lows for Nelson after health care vote

A new poll puts support for Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson below 50 percent in his home state.

A new poll puts support for Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson below 50 percent in his home state.

(CNN) - Sen. Ben Nelson's support in his home state of Nebraska has dipped below 50 percent, according to a new poll which finds a majority of voters there disapprove of the Democratic health care bill the two-term senator supports.

According to a new poll conducted by the Omaha World-Herald, Nelson's job approval rating now stands at 42 percent with a 48 percent disapproval rating. Forty-four percent of those polled also said Nelson's support for the health care reform bill would hurt his chances at re-election 2012 should he decide to run.

Nelson was the last Senate Democrat to sign on to his party's health care bill, and has since been criticized for only agreeing to the bill after winning special concessions from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

The poll found that more than 60 percent of Nebraskans questioned oppose the Senate health care bill.

A majority said they opposed Nelson's vote in favor of the bill, while about 1 in 3 approved of it. Three-quarters of the GOP voters surveyed - but only 22 percent of Democrats - opposed the senator's vote.

Nelson, who served as governor of Nebraska from 1991-1999, has long been a popular figure in the state. He was re-elected in 2006 to his second Senate term with 64 percent of the vote.

The same poll out Monday shows fellow Nebraska Sen. Mike Johanns, a Republican who voted against the health care measure, with a 63 percent approval rating.

The poll surveyed 500 registered voters in Nebraska between Jan. 8-12. It has a sampling error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

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soundoff (237 Responses)
  1. ToughLove

    Randall in Torrance cracks me up with his TWO Master's Degrees! Obviously he represents those in our country who feel that a liberal higher education is better than common sense.
    Hey Randy! We elect our leaders to represent US, remember?? They are OUR voices. They do OUR bidding. They don't go maverick without paying a price. And the liberals are going to pay a BIG PRICE soon enough...because the conservative values and ideals that made our country great in the first place, are our only hope today.
    And Randal-dear...your education doesn't make you better than a cornhusker in Nebraska.

    January 18, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  2. dave denver

    "No one gets to walk between the rain." (Quote from Bob Seger); Randall in Torrance, CA (with two Master's Degrees from WWU)

    I can not believe CNN moderated this guys garbage and let it go. It's already obvious that elitist college educated snobs think they know what is best for everyone. You can have an education but that does not guarantee that you have common sense and this guy shows a complete lack of it. I know several people with multiple degrees that have a hard time finding their way home, let alone telling me how to run my life.

    January 18, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  3. always proud dem in nc

    Why in the world any right thinking person, would vote Republican is amazing to me. They were the party that got us into this economic mess. Don't listen to the right wing fear and scare tactics and vote the Repiglicans BACK into office. They had their chance and blew it. Dems in 2010 and Obama 2012!!!!!

    January 18, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  4. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Nice going Ben! You sold your soul to the insurance lobby and now you will pay the price. Are you listening Lieberman? Lincoln? Landrieu?

    January 18, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  5. Patriot

    I would love all the fiscally irresponsible, tax and spend liberals out there to show this conservative constitutionalist where in the constitution Washington, Jefferson and all our founding fathers made healthcare a right? Fact is that it is not a human right but a priveledge...as clearly evidenced by the tragic and deplorable conditions in Haiti and other areas of our world. Fact is, the bill of rights is our protection of personal liberties and freedoms and makes no mention of universal healthcare. This was not by chance as obviously our founding fathers had healthcare concerns...what, did they not get sick or are we that nieve to think they overlooked such a profound part of like. I'd like to see liberals start reading the us constitution and abide by its intentions...

    January 18, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  6. Emma

    If he is not re-elected it will not be a big loss for the Dems. Nelson seems
    to frequently do things the GOP way.

    January 18, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  7. Mike in MN

    The health care reform bill is dragging the Dems down. It is the biggest cause of Nelson's approval ratings fall and the biggest reason Brown will win Kennedy's old Senate seat in Mass. Yet the Dems remain in a rush to pass it so Obama can brag about it in his State of the Union speech. Poll after poll shows the voters do not want this version of health care reform. Americans have been letting the Democrats in the House and Senate since this summer that there is too much in the bill that they do not want. They want reform, but not this version that is too overreaching, to much government, too expensive, and forces you to buy insurance if you don't want it. The Dems have either refused to listen or just don't care. But the final word is the Americans peoples vote, witness the Senate election in Mass.

    January 18, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  8. so rich even obama couldn't hurt me but you middle class folk should worry

    look this bill stinks! plain n simple, it still leaves 12.5 million uninsured, way to expensive, these poor poor souls the Dems care so so much about don't even receive coverage till 2014 yet we start paying immediately, its shameful and its not about covering people who do not have coverage, if you honestly think that you are ignorant, sorry but its the truth. we have gone in one direction since the Dems took over congress and that's down! fanny and freddie caused this financial melt down the repubs warned of it , tried to stop it the Dems lied said it was a distraction from the war these are facts people! then they blame it on repubs with mainstream on board and you bought it! well look now people are figuring it out and the numbers prove it!

    January 18, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  9. jrzshor

    should politicians vote the way they "feel" or should they vote the way we "feel"?

    Or should politicians "vote" for us 'cause we be "ignorant". and being that we are not smartly educated at the really expensive eastern schools (and are failed lawyers), the know better than us. afterall, we are ignorant and we willing want, need to be led by rich, smart, confident sociopaths.

    January 18, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  10. John

    We have more low IQ uneducated people in this country than all of the rest of the world combined. If not for that the people would have enough sense to see that in the last thirty years thanks to the Republicans and big business they have decimated the milddle class and turned this country into a third world country. Go ahead you morons and put the Repubs back in power so they can finish off the country.

    January 18, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  11. Mike1952

    Nancy, Hairy, and Wingnut are driving the dimocrat bus off the cliff with all aboard. What a show this is getting to be.

    January 18, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |


    January 18, 2010 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  13. Kevin in Ohio

    @chuck January 18th, 2010 12:29 pm ET

    Why in the world a middle class person would EVER vote Republican is beyond me. But, they will.


    Because conservative values give them a chance to become more than middle class. All dems want is for poor people to stay ppoor and for middle class to stay middle calss....so they will vote cdemocrat. Wakeup, moron.

    January 18, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    I wouldn't count on this poll, Its a republican ran newspaper.

    January 18, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  15. Denna

    Nelson – another idiot who will hand the Republicans a victory, thereby dragging this country backwards. the Republicans won't be happy until America is like a third-world country with them running the whole show. All you "freedom-loving" conservatives had better wake up to the fact that one-party rule is not healthy, nor is two-party rule when one party refuses (Rethugs) to cooperate.

    January 18, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  16. Jin

    It is pretty evident that many if not most Nebraskans (at least those who have the time to comment here) desperately need to find a better news source than Fox Noise. Or they need to work harder at social studies education in Nebraska's public education system.

    January 18, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  17. Pat F

    This little creep deserves to have his head handed to him. He thought that Nebraskans would like the bribe. He chose poorly.

    January 18, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  18. Gary Penley

    Why should Nelson care what happens to his political future? He, like all the other crooks in congress, by their own vote, get full retirement after just one term. And they are worried about us? I don't think so.

    January 18, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  19. D. Tree

    Nebraska voters still prefer a public option as part of the insurance reform – Ben Nelson fought against that, and instead made petty political demands. No wonder he is unpopular in his state.

    January 18, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  20. Jim

    @ Henry Miller, Libertarian

    health care entitlement program? what health care entitlement program are you talking about? there isn't one in this country ... unless you are refering to the one that members of congress get.

    January 18, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  21. Jill-IN

    Nebraska is a poor State by comparison to many others. The people of Nebraska should be happy that Ben Nelson works so hard to get more for them – for all of them. People fall prey so easily to the fear and hate messages that abound these days. Support a senator that represents you as a person and your fellow citizens. Don't fall prey to the fear mongering that something is being taken away from you. You seniors on Medicare – the best coverage in the world – no one is taking anything away from you! Try to be fair and considerate of your fellow citizens who also need healthcare.

    January 18, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  22. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    What this says to me is that Republicans know how to sell.
    They know how to sell fear and distrust.
    They know how to sell disinformation.
    Salesmanship is how we ended up subsidizing the corn industry, using the poison corn syrup which has done more than anything else to create health problems by obesity than anything else. Ethanol for our cars which costs more to produce AND uses more oil than just burning oil.

    Salesmanship is what we face when we get home and ask "why did I buy that?"

    We're at that door again.
    Health care that helps ALL of America is better than health "insurance" that only helps those who can afford it.
    The fact that we need to be legislated into doing what is right for ALL OF OUR COUNTRYMEN is a blemish on our society. The fact that it is so easy to sway people to be fearful and selfish is just sad.

    Health care for all will help ALL... Why is that a bad thing?

    January 18, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  23. Right Leaning Independent

    The rise of conservatism began in NJ and is gaining momentum! Tomorrow will hopefully be a good day! Thank you Obama for waking people up!!!

    January 18, 2010 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  24. Jim

    @ bill who said " ... his promises which are proving over and over again to be nothing but lies."

    not true and you know it. if you are going to make a statement like this, please back it up with facts.

    one sure way to annoy a conservative ... use facts.

    January 18, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  25. gt

    bad move nelly.... your history...

    January 18, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
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