CNN/ORC Poll: Are Obamacare's flaws fixable?
November 27th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
5 months ago

CNN/ORC Poll: Are Obamacare's flaws fixable?

Washington (CNN) – Despite the flawed rollout of HealthCare.gov, a majority of Americans still seem to have an open mind about whether Obamacare will work, and more than half of those surveyed in a new national poll believe the current problems can be solved.

A CNN/ORC International poll also indicates nearly six in 10 Americans oppose the national health care law, but some give the Affordable Care Act a thumbs down because it isn't liberal enough.

According to the survey released on Wednesday, four in 10 say they support the law, with 58% opposed. Those figures are little changed from a CNN poll a month ago, just two weeks into the rough start up of HealthCare.gov and mostly before the controversy over insurance policy cancellations due primarily to the new health law.

But 41% say they oppose the law because they think it's too liberal, with 14% saying the measure doesn't go far enough. That means that 54% either support Obamacare, or say it's not liberal enough.

Is the new law a success or failure?

Nearly four in 10 say it's a failure, with 53% saying it is too soon to tell.

Will the current problems faced by Obamacare be eventually solved?

Fifty-four percent express optimism on this question, with 45% saying that Obamacare's flaws will never be fixed.

Younger Americans are much less likely to express negative views of the new health care law.

"Only 25% of 18-to-34 year olds say that the new law is a failure, compared to more than four in 10 in any other age bracket. Seven in 10 younger Americans think the current problems faced by Obamacare will eventually be fixed. Senior citizens are split, and most people between 35 and 65 years old think that the system is permanently broken," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

The poll was conducted November 18-20 for CNN by ORC International, with 843 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this story.


Filed under: CNN/ORC poll • Obamacare • President Obama
soundoff (488 Responses)
  1. Vincent

    They won't be undecided for very long. As the website gets fixed and the majority people see the benefits in cost and service, this ball game is over. Keep enhancing the website every day.

    November 27, 2013 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  2. Independent Voter

    IMPEACH OBAMA!

    November 27, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  3. acepaul

    There are better, less damaging solutions (not that this could be called a solution) than Obamacare. Time to get politics and the government out of the healthcare business.

    November 27, 2013 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  4. rosethornne

    The thing has not even been implemented yet.

    PRIVATE companies (that holy Grail of the free market) have done as they ALWAYS do and dropped bunches of customers from some products while picking up bunches of customers with other products.

    *gasp*

    November 27, 2013 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  5. tom l

    @Ctrygrl
    "Yes I know the younger and often healthier end up paying more but they wont always be young and healthy and I am betting the republicans base appeal to their selfishness is not going to work."

    Flawed thought process on so many levels. First, the young that will pay will ALWAYS be young, it may be a different young person but it will always be a young person who will rarely ever use the insurance you have no made them buy. Secondly, what could be more selfish than your premise? You want someone else to pay for something another person needs. That is selfish.

    November 27, 2013 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  6. stan

    So, in short, the older and more experienced you are the less likely you are to fall for Obama's lies and deceptions. This is the very reason Plato himself philosophized that no man under the age of 30 be allowed to vote. Obama appeals to children and those that still think like children. No president since Lincolns time has so divided the nation in such a manner. Under Obama the probability of another American civil war grows daily. Just watch and see.

    November 27, 2013 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  7. John Holmes

    Would one Obama supporter please admit that this law is not accomplishing what was promised e.g. If you like your doctor or current plan you can keep it, it will lower healthcare and premium costs, everybody will be signing up for it? Its not about the technology, which is a complete failure in functionality and security, and its not about the politics because protecting Americans is a good thing – its about the lies told, the false promises and the fact that the law is not doing what we were told it would do. The law is flawed – please be brave enough to admit that or it will not change!

    November 27, 2013 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  8. Skinzo

    Adamantlly opposed to Obamacare.

    November 27, 2013 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  9. Bayhuntr

    Is there something in the water in Texas that makes people say dumb things? There is no exemption from the affordable care act for federal workers. What there is, is a mandate they are being forced to use the exchange a law added by a Republican. But there's that Texan with his finger in his nose blabbering the bullshit he's been fed. The exemption isn't for all unions, it is for certain plans that some unions have and it's only temporary until they can get those particular plans to meet the standards. But what do we expect from a state with the lowest hourly wage in the nation and the most uninsured people? These fools are playing checkers in the chest world.

    November 27, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  10. DaveinNC

    When will the government force people to eat Brussels sprouts and exercise daily

    November 27, 2013 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  11. Vegas Smitty

    They have to quit taking these polls in the White House basement.

    November 27, 2013 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  12. Ed

    Look. You all can wrangle about right left good bad. Truth is my policy was cancelled. Not a junk policy (despite talking points) It covered what I wanted and fit my monthly budget. They left me no choice now. They funneled me where they wanted to funnel me. NY did not institute the so called fix (all talk.) Now if I want insurance. I have to pay at least (for the great bronze policy) $200 more per month with a deductible of $5000. That's out of pocket. Going to my GP. I have to have a minor surgery, guess it will come out of my pocket now. Wouldn't have with my old (trashy) policy. So now I pay $200 more per month and all my doctor bills. I can't afford that so I guess I go without insurance again. Nice. No subsidies for me. Talk all you want. They want my $200 per month to pay for some crackhead who hangs in front of the library or some woman with 10 illegitimate kids. Call it what you want but this is 100% socialism, redistribution of income. And not for the middle-class because I AM the middle class! He was a community organizer and is now doing it on a grand scale. His preferred group is the poor, NOT the middle class. If anyone denies that, they are lying. I'm living it.

    November 27, 2013 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  13. Bayhuntr

    Give us a break, the reason no Republicans voted for the ACA is because all the Republicans are bought and paid for by big Business, just like "blue dog" Democrats. You know this is going to save the middle-class money because big business is against it. Healthcare went up 103% from the years 2002 2006, you fools thank that didn't hurt the middle class? Republicans defeated democratic healthcare reform in the 90s and promised to fix it, were they lying then or are they lying now?

    November 27, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  14. sofork

    Only village idiots would support Obama's Unaffordable Care Act.

    November 27, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  15. mecheng

    @jinx9to88

    Yep just like that clown Issa parading around to four RED STATES to hear several people stories he personally chooses that have negative opinions on Obamacare but won't listen to the positive stories that Obamacare is providing. Why don't Issa go to Kentucky were Obamcare is working, thats a red state? Cause he is a Hypocrite!!!!

    _____________
    I live in KY – to say that it's working here is a gross misrepresentation

    November 27, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  16. FireDown

    The thing I hate is that people have been bashing this before it even came online. It's only been active for like 6 weeks, but it's been damned and condemned for well over a year. The ACA is the George Zimmerman of bills. Completely guilty in the eyes of the media before ever getting to have a chance to go to trial.

    Give this brand new system a year (or two) to shakedown any problems and provide the solution it's meant to provide, then decide whether it's worthy of being our healthcare system.

    Rarely, does anything technology-related come out without glitches and fixes needed initially. Give it a chance to see what it does right and what it does wrong, then go back and start tweaking the wrong things to be right in the future. This is how all newly implemented systems work.

    It takes time, money and patience to work out the quirks, don't just believe the politicians that use it as nothing more than a tool to twist your minds to gain them more power. Have an opinion of your own, supported by facts gathered over the next year or two, then tell our "leaders" what you think and what you would like them to do to improve it for everyone.

    November 27, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  17. Ray Montgomery

    Obamacare is not about health care, it is about healt insurance. There is nothing in the program that reduces health care costs or improves delivery. That is the biggest problem. More Americans who can afford it are going abroad for health care where they can get better treatment at better prices.

    November 27, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  18. nc_mike

    All those adamantlly opposed to Obamacare – you are in the minority!!!! And 14% more thing ACA doesn't go far enough. Read again – MINORITY! Get over it because you LOST the war and there is no way to stop it.

    November 27, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  19. DJ

    Funny how polls work, you get the answers you want based on how you phrase the questions. If that doesn't work you can inject statements like "But 41% say they oppose the law because they think it's too liberal, with 14% saying the measure doesn't go far enough. That means that 54% either support Obamacare, or say it's not liberal enough."

    You have to realize one thing. A large portion of Americans already have health insurance sponsored by their employers. The president has delayed implementation for employers by a year. So most Americans have not yet been impacted by the ACA. You add to that the young adults under 26 who are covered under their parents plan. Bottom line: Many Americans have not yet been impacted by Obamacare directly and therefore may not be fully aware of its impact on their lives. It would be interesting to know how many people who participated in this poll have also been directly impacted by Obamacare. It would also be interesting to see a poll such as this in a year once the law has been fully implemented.

    November 27, 2013 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  20. NorCalMojo

    Democrats really screwed the pooch on this one.

    November 27, 2013 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  21. al

    Interesting. The problems need to be fixed. I don't know if it will work but there are parts of it that should do as intended. One thing I like about it is that it moves us in the direction of preventative care as opposed to after illness care. That will bring down costs in the long run.

    November 27, 2013 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  22. Just Saying

    Rudy NYC
    "Nice try." Republicans knew exactly what was in the bill. Why do you think they filibustered it for their lobbbyists? BTW, the Senate filibuster was broken in December 2009, which was followed by TWO MONTHS of debate over the content of the bill on the Senate floor before it was passed in March 2010. Once it passed in the Senate, then it moved to the House. Pelosi was being wickedly sarcastic in her response.
    ----–

    Rudy, so you're saying that all of Congress knew that people would not be able to keep their plans, even though they were told they could? Congress knew that the law would be so singularly dependent on enough young people signing up, that if they didn't sign up en masse (which they're not doing at all now), then it would lead to extreme increases for everybody when the insurance companies don't have enough young healthy people to counteract the increased costs they will have from every other group? Congress knew that everybody would be charged the same prices (even though women and the elderly use by far the majority of health services), which means that men and the healthy would be forced to pay much higher premiums than if this act had not been passed? Congress knew that the only way they could convince enough people to sign up would be to hand out hundreds of millions (or more) in direct subsidy payments to a large percentage of the population, paid for exclusively by the middle class and above? Congress knew that in order to make this approach viable, insurance companies would have to decrease the amount they reimbursed participating doctors, and thus a number of doctors would choose to not accept these plans, thereby again breaking the promise made that people could keep their doctors if they wanted? Congress knew that the real fun was going to start next year when employer plans get hit by the same problems that individual plans are now, thus causing the additional cancellation of tens of millions of plans?

    Wow, the Democrats in Congress knew all that, and still pushed ahead? That doesn't really paint them in a better light if that were true (personally, I don't believe they did know how this was all going to turn out). Besides, it was not debated for a full 2 months, and if you only count the actual time spent talking about it over that time period, you're talking HOURS, not months! Pelosi was not the only one that claimed that they didn't fully know all of the intricacies of the bill (due to its ridiculous length).

    November 27, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  23. John Illinois

    This is nothing but a gigantic BS welfare program and must be eliminated! NO socialist single payer BS which the liberals actually want either!

    November 27, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  24. Dsay

    Nailed it
    ----------------------
    stan
    So, in short, the older and more experienced you are the less likely you are to fall for Obama's lies and deceptions. This is the very reason Plato himself philosophized that no man under the age of 30 be allowed to vote. Obama appeals to children and those that still think like children. No president since Lincolns time has so divided the nation in such a manner. Under Obama the probability of another American civil war grows daily. Just watch and see.

    November 27, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. jerryrigger

    This national healthcare narrative is flawed beyond any correction. It is the equivalent to a bandaid with NO gum on the back of it to stick to a cut. Rubbish...BOLDERDASCHE!!!!

    November 27, 2013 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
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