March 29th, 2010
12:51 PM ET
5 years ago

CNN Poll: Americans divided on repealing health care law

Most Americans disapprove of the health care reform law, a new CNN poll says.
Most Americans disapprove of the health care reform law, a new CNN poll says.

Washington (CNN) - Most Americans disapprove of the health care reform law, but that does not translate into majority support for the "repeal and replace" strategy backed by most GOP leaders, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday indicates that 56 percent of the public disapproves of the new legislation, with 42 percent approving of the bill that President Obama signed into law last week. Tuesday the president signs into law fixes to the original legislation that were approved by Congress last week.

Full results (pdf)

More than three in 10 questioned say they dislike most of the bill, with one in four saying they oppose all the proposals in the new law. Fifteen percent say they approve of the new law without reservation, with another one in four saying they support the new reforms but feel they didn't go far enough.

When it comes to health care, Republicans have made "repeal and replace" their battle cry, and Obama has said he welcomes the fight. At an event in Iowa City, Iowa, last week, the president scoffed at the GOP strategy, saying, "My attitude is - Go for it."

According to the poll, 47 percent agree with the Republican strategy and want Congress to repeal most of the major provisions in the bill and replace them with completely new proposals. But 50 percent are fine with the current law or want Congress to go back and pass something that would increase the government's involvement in health care even further.

The 47 percent who favor "repeal and replace" is significantly lower than the 56 percent who say they disapprove of the bill's passage last week.

"That's because opposition to the new law comes in many different forms and not all of them benefit the GOP," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Some Americans continue to say that they disapprove of the bill because they want even more government involvement in health care than the bill created. Only a quarter are against the entire bill; one in three support at least a few proposals in the new law. And a handful of Americans appear to dislike the bill but don't want Congress to spend any more time on health care."

The survey indicates that half of all Republicans questioned say they are angry about the bill's passage, with another 38 percent saying they are displeased. By contrast, 29 percent of Democrats say they are enthusiastic, with another 50 percent saying they are pleased.

"The new law seems to have riled up Republicans without really getting Democrats fired up. Half of Republicans are angry about the new health care law; most Democrats favor the law but only one in three are enthusiastic about it," adds Holland.

According to the poll, the number who say the law would not help anyone in the country has dropped in the past week. Thirty-seven percent of the people questioned in a CNN survey released a week ago said the reforms would not help anyone. That number has dropped to 29 percent in the new poll.

Forty-seven percent say that this is a major victory for Barack Obama with another one in five calling it a minor accomplishment and one in three saying it was not a positive achievement.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday, with 1,009 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

– CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report


Filed under: CNN poll • Health care • Popular Posts
soundoff (204 Responses)
  1. DJK

    "A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday indicates that 56 percent of the public disapproves of the new legislation, with 42 percent approving of the bill that President Obama signed into law last week."

    Wow....if that was 56% in favor of the bill and 42% against it, CNN would claim that 'a majority LOVE this bill!' But since it's 56% opposed and 42% for Obama's plan, they write 'Americans are divided'.

    March 29, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  2. rstlne

    I keep seeing these polls which state that more than 50% of the American public is seriously unhappy with the new health care bill. No one ever states exactly who was polled to come up with the advertised figures. Are these Americans from large cities, rural towns, or an even sampling of both? Who exactly handled the polling? In this case was it Opinion Research Corporation for CNN? Or did CNN staff actually participate? It matters a great deal who does the polling and how the process is conducted.

    It seems disingenuous to me to keep repeating these polls without stating exactly who is unhappy and who is pleased with this new bill (or any political matter). Anyone can rig a poll to get the results they want; it is simply a matter of polling a particular segment of the population (i.e., blue or red states or counties).

    March 29, 2010 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. Emilie

    Again, when polled about the new law, they don't like it. But when they talk about the specific elements of the law, they like it. So how are those poll questions being asked? I'd love to know but no one's asking me.

    March 29, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  4. IC

    I don't think most americans know WHAT is in the bill so how could they have a serious and valid opinion about it????
    They're just repeating like parrots what they hear on the news or their talk show hosts. It's sad. We're a nation of sheep.

    March 29, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  5. Ryker

    This is yet another foolish CNN article, trying to obfuscate what has been going on all along. Constantly, 50% + has been in favor of what passed as a minimum. When you add in the folks that say it did not go far enough, you get up to between 53% and 56%. The bottom line is that this is actually a majority support bill and in the months to come it will get more and more popular.

    March 29, 2010 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  6. It's Me

    2/3 of the Senior Citizens here in Florida Oppose Health Care.

    What do the senior citizens have AGAINST the rest of us?

    March 29, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  7. Dale Goodwin

    "Americans Divided....."

    Don't hide your bias, CNN. When Obama was elected with 52% of the vote, you claimed it was a resounding victory.

    How does 56% opposed to health care not result in resounding opposition?

    March 29, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  8. Dawn

    You have Mark Halperin screaming a headline "56% of Americans oppose bill passage", but the pollsters expressly state 50% of Americans either want to keep law as is or want more government involvement, i.e. a public option. So, 56% are not opposed to Health Care Reform. They are either fine with it or want more.

    March 29, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  9. Edwin

    How can any reasonable person be against ALL of the provisions in the bill? The only thing they know is that Obama wanted it, so it must be bad.

    I can see people objecting to specific parts, but honestly, why would anyone say that it is okay for insurance companies to suddenly terminate your coverage with no notice, even though you are paid through the end of the year?

    March 29, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  10. haren

    Did not Leona Helmsley 'queen of mean' said that "We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes...,"
    Now it is time for rich people to pay their fair share of taxes for health care reform.
    With all that loop hole in tax code by republican they pay average only 17% tax instead of top rate of 35%,
    New jersey voters and particularly independent now realised what happens when you elect Republican governor.
    Governor Christie wanted to give tax break to rich people making more than $400000 and cut school funding.

    March 29, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  11. Former Republican, now an Independent

    The Americans wanting to repeal this law should dig for the truth. The republican party has hired professional people to distort these issues to the point of lying about them.

    March 29, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  12. JayW in Austin

    And yet a recent Gallup Poll shows that the majority favors the health bill. I think it all must boil down to how the question is asked.

    March 29, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  13. Steve

    "... The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything."

    I am an independent, so I don't have a dog in the race either way. BUT, when are the Republicans going to learn that at some point in time they are going to have to stop campainging and start doing something....anything.

    I always thought one of the greatest myths about the Republican party is that they were deficit Hawks. The last 20 years of of GOP presidents have proved that is a myth. The only true way to cut the deficit is to raise taxes or cut entitlements like Social Security or Medicare...or just end unemployment alltoghether. The first repbulican that proposes any of those, I will vote for just on principal.

    Otherwise...shut up with all the vitrial and scare tactics...and do something.

    March 29, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  14. Sue

    CNN-–GREAT try to spin/manipulate facts and information.

    You will see how many people HATE Obamacare in the 2010 elections-–no matter how hard you try to provide support/cover for Obama, Pelosi, Reid and the rest of the loony left liberal Democrats.

    Also, you lost even more credibility when CNN reporter Fredricka Whitfield reported that "dozens" of tea party members showed up in Searchlight, Nevada--when there were 10,000 in Searchlight, and 5000 people in Henderson. The information about Fredricka/CNN's lack of credibility-–is now all over the blog sites today--with pictures to prove that she is a LIAR.

    March 29, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  15. Simon Conrad

    I expect the the number of people who are o.k. with the legislation will grow. The "angry" folks, other than genuine citizens who are tired of their interests being ignored, are conservatives who still can not cope with the defeat last election. How about anger at Wall Street and the Banks, both of which show no concern for anyone but their own profits? How about anger at the Health Insurance companies, who cut off sick folks for profits? How about anger toward politicians who would rather stay in power than to pass legislation for the benefit of those who are hurting. The "free market" works well if you have money invested, not if you are unemployed.

    March 29, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  16. Jaye

    A poll of 1009 people is hardly the opinion of the american people. I am so sick of the media and the polls that so call represent what the majority of people think. There are over 220 million people in this country.

    March 29, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  17. CAisajoke

    Remember Fox News is NOT news and has no unbiased reporters. So, that leaves CNN, ABC,NBC,CBS and so on to report the news. I really am amazed how supportive these news agencies are of Obama. I know, I know, they're all liberal media but their reporting is getting eerily like the propaganda put out during Hitler's regime.

    March 29, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  18. mjm

    Rasmussen has ir at 42% oppose repeal and 54% support repeal.

    Write a better bill next time and we won't have to worry about it.

    March 29, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  19. T'SAH from Virginia

    YOU – CNN, and your POLLS keep mixing apples with oranges!!! Many feel the bill did not go FAR ENOUGH – which means, they agree with the bill!!!

    Then, you mix "enthusiastic" with "pleased"!!! Then it is "displeased" mixed with "enthusiastic"!! Then it's "disapprove" versus "approve". All of a sudden "oppose" – in comparison to "support" – jumps into the race. Then it's the percentages – 56%, 47%, 50%, 29%, 37%...

    Last but not least, 1 in 3, 3 in 10, 1 in 4, and 10 questioned.... and so on with the CRAP!!!

    Who decided this – 1,009 people (900 RepubliCAN'Ts and 109 Democrats).

    March 29, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  20. Rick McDaniel

    There is no division, as far as I'm concerned. I favor repealing it, because it ONLY benefits those in the health care industry, and NOT the citizens.

    This bill was a sell out, to the special interests.

    March 29, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  21. Martybh4

    I only have one comment everyone is so angry and Republicans are saying they do not like the bill that was passed by the Democrats and honestly I don't see how the new bill helps me at all but the Republicans have had control of the House and Senate for years and I don't recall them being so gung ho about health reform in the past. Is this something new or just a political ploy. Personally I am tired of the whole game and someone just need to stand up for Americans and not everyone else's country. We are always telling everybody else how to run their Country and we can't get our own straight.

    March 29, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  22. Greg

    Nice that CNN tries to put a positive spin on these dreadful poll results for the Democratic party.

    The overwhelming majority of Americans dissapprove of the massive legislation just forced down its throats by the Democratic party.

    But, these same people aren't sure that they want it to be repealed

    All this equals, great win for the Democrats.

    Nice!

    VERY objective reporting!

    March 29, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  23. haren

    My slogan 'Replace the Republican'
    To cover health care for all, some body has to pay price and now it is time for all Suv owner of tea party and rich republican guys to pay their fair share and keep quite.

    March 29, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  24. Dale

    Time is on the side of the new legislation. We have a tendency to resist change to things in our lives even if they are good for us. This legislation was needed and will be improved upon. Intellect and not emotion was used by the Democracts who passed on this Act for the benefit of all Americans.

    March 29, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  25. Sam

    All I hear from the Republican party is 'Repeal', I have not heard a whole lot of the 'Replace' part of it.

    How can anyone be against the entire bill? So eliminating insurance companies' ability to deny insurance to Americans due to pre-existing conditions is a bad thing?

    This reminds me of the whole uproar over Obama's speech on education. The right wing made a huge fuss about it being left wing propaganda, and prevented their children from hearing it. Guess what? It was a great message! Those children whom did not hear the message are worse off for it. The far right wing will oppose anything Obama proposes, regardless if it's for the better for America.

    March 29, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
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