September 22nd, 2010
12:24 PM ET
12 years ago

At six month mark, Americans appear divided on health care reform


Washington (CNN) - As President Barack Obama marks six months since he signed health care reform legislation into law, it appears Americans are divided over the sweeping measure.

Thursday is the six month anniversary of the health care bill passed by Congress. Wednesday the president traveled to the home of an individual with a chronic ailment who, according senior administration officials, is benefiting from the new law's repeal of lifetime coverage limits.

Wednesday's event appears to be an opportunity for Obama to tout what many consider his signature legislative accomplishment of his first two years in office.

And the event comes as the midterm elections are less than six weeks away. Democrats are trying to hold onto their majorities in Congress in November's contests.

So what do Americans think about the comprehensive health care law?

Recent polls suggest the public is divided.

According to a CBS News/New York Times survey conducted this month, 37 percent say they approve of the health care law, with seven percent saying they disapprove of the measure but don't want it repealed, and four in ten saying they disapprove and do want the law repealed.

While not as important as the economy, health care reform is an issue on the minds of voters this year. So which party do Americans think will do a better job on the issue?

Again, Americans appear divided. A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll conducted in early September indicates that 46 percent of the public says that Democrats in Congress will do a better job on health care, with 45 percent saying congressional Republicans will do a better job on the issue.

Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PsteinhauserCNN

Filed under: Health care • issues • Polls • President Obama
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. GettingScared


    "Ok let's repeal it and let the insurance companies have their way.
    No competion and no regulation"

    You obviously don't know the first thing about private health insurance. Private Insurance has competition, Government run would not. Every State has insurance regulators that do what? Answer: Regulate insurance companies.

    Please educate yourself some so you don't dumb down others...

    September 22, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  2. key

    Is there still a death panel are was that made up like fiction to score political points.

    September 22, 2010 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  3. Ken

    The only reason healthcare reform is not more popular is because all the misinformation coming for conservative media. All the lies, comercials from the Chamber of Commerce and the Insurance industry itself. Mostly low information voters are against it.

    Most of the bill doesn't kick in for a while anyway. The insurance exchange will not start until 2014. That will help lower insurance costs.

    The Republicans against reform have no idea of the horrific costs our insurance and health care system have placed on the economy. Our percentage of healthcare cost against the GDP are out of line with the rest of the world and we have net worse outcomes for the majority of people. That needed to be fixed. The health care law was a good start.

    Though single payer is still the most efficent and economica way to go.

    September 22, 2010 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  4. Uncle Sam

    Divided? The only division is deciding oppose or strongly oppose.

    September 22, 2010 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  5. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    One you can't read you are considered illiterate and to gain knowledge requires READING THE DANG HEALTHCARE BILL FOR YOURSELF.

    September 22, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  6. Brian

    Such clowns!! The majority of Americans want health Care reform. Why do we feel that presidentObama can magically make everything better? We got something!! It's called progress right!!

    61% want to repeal HCR bill is misleading. half those people are upset because the bill did not go far enough "PUBLIC OPTION" Hey but thats what (R) do best divide, mislead, and wage endless wars to shovel money out of a system we all pay into. These days seem like ppl are just in their own realities its kinda scary!! It gets worse before it gets better.

    September 22, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  7. Tim

    Actually, we are quite united against it. Just like we were before it was passed so that we could see what was in it.

    You are a joke.

    September 22, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  8. Tim

    It's so great all of the democrats who voted for it tout their vote on the campaign trail.

    Oh, wait, never mind.

    September 22, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  9. bill

    americans dont understand healthcare.most have it with employer.but they should get the facts straight.before they comment on it. 1 CAINT TURN YOU DOWN FOR PREVIOUS CONDITIONS. caint cancel you for nothing.there is more take time to get educated before you go bookey/.

    September 22, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  10. Bob in PA

    Next to nothing has happened yet. They are still just setting up the framework they created in the stimulus and health care bills.

    September 22, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |

    I agree that no insurance should be able to set a limit to their coverage leaving many of our people without coverage because they the insurance company will lose money. This is a no, no. What I don't agree with is how OBAMA jumped the Constitution by-laws by not letting any bill pass through legislation. We are not under a Dictatorship or or we. Another thing that someone is going to have to explain where Obama intends to come up with all this money to pay for his program. IT CAN ONLY COME FROM TAX, TAX, TAX. Someday payback has to occur. This health program, the money owed to China the worst country in the hemisphere to have dealings with and now we owe our soul to them. AMERICA ONCE THE MOST WONDERFUL COUNTRY IN THE WORLD HAS FALLEN TO NOT HAVING GOD IN SCHOOLS, ALLOWING ATHEISTS TO CHANGE LAWS ON A WHIM AND FEDERAL JUDGES MAKING LAW WHERE THEY HAVE NO BUSINESS INTERFERING. INTERFERING WITH STATE RIGHTS. THIS IS WHAT THIS COUNTRY HAS FELL INTO UNDER OBAMA. WHAT THE FOOLISH DON'T UNDERSTAND THAT THIS IS OBAMA'S AND HIS UN-LOVELY WIFE'S INTENTIONS. THAT OF DESTROYING AMERICA.

    September 22, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  12. Peter s

    In the 21st Century the healthcare bill is the greatest thing to happen in America, infact its up there with the railroad, telephone and the internet. Once people get to understand it! they will appreciate all the efforts and frustrations of those crafted the bill. And for those insurance companies threathening to drop children from coverage I say go a head!!! someone else will always step in and fulfill the underserved niche in the market and may be fulfill the the needs with better quality services than most existing insurance companies offer!! Time for bluffs is over!!!

    September 22, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  13. doight

    Americans that were and are against Health Care reform want to put their lives in the hands of corporations that put profit above their health. There is nothing wrong with that if you feel that Health Care is a commodity. In Canada we treat Health Care as if it is a basic human right. There are problems with our system but I would take it over yours any day.

    So when you sit across from your Physician in the US are you getting his/her best medical opinion or is it affected by how much money he will make? Is you Physician really working for you or is he under so much financial pressurethat he/she gives you the care that Health Care Corporations say he should give you?

    One of the lies that was put forth in your Health Care debate is that Canadian Physicians are paid less than their counterparts in the US. Well as a Canadian Primary Care Physician I can tell you that in our Province we all make more than US Primary Care Physicians and we don't make money off investigations or referrals. We also don't lose money if we recommend costlyinvestigations/ treatment.

    September 22, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  14. Independent

    There is a big difference between Health Care and Health Insurance. If people don't want insurance or cant afford it then they can go to a gov't run hospital. Take my tax dollars I've already paid and spend them on more gov't run hospitals INSTEAD of taking my taxes AND then making me pay higher premiums to cover others. Those individuals who can afford but chose not to buy insurance can then make the decision to go to those hospitals or go to a private doc and pay more.
    Oh and before you say those hospitals are not up to standards....REALLY and you want the same govt to run insurance?? Come on people insurance and health care are not the same thing!!

    September 22, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  15. Dean

    vic, Nashville TN September 22nd, 2010 12:33 pm ET

    With out test driving how we grade the health care bill
    You don't need to test drive when my wife's premiums jumped 50% this year. And the cost of no pre-existing conditions policies start at about $900.00 a month with unbelievable deductions.

    September 22, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  16. joe

    The bill is essentially the same bill the republicans put forth to counter Clinton's health care proposal. That's the only reason it wasn't a "government takeover of healthcare" then. The poll doesn't say how many people oppose the helath care bill because it didn't do enough or because it was basically a giveaway to the insurance companies. It the insurance companies wanted this bill killed they could have easily bought another senator or two to kill it, but they know they stand to make billions from the mandate. This was no government takeover of healthcare it was another example of our government being a wholey owned subsidiary of corporate America. The Corporate America that showed with the Financial Collapse, the mining disaster and the BP oil spill that they have absolutely NO loyalty to the USA whatsoever. Profit is first and foremost, America be damned!

    September 22, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  17. aproudmemberoftheunpatrioticmob

    Hey Alex@ and don't forget those Democrat liberals for saving the right of trial lawyers to continue to pillage and plunder these companies driving our costs up more and their making sure that the unions don't have to pay the tax increases that the rest of us do, because they are major contributors to the Democrat liberal party. The American taxpayer was robbed on this thing, like Obama and his crew of thugs have been robbing the working people ever since the unions stole the election for them.

    September 22, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  18. Oregon Calling

    Time for the USA to get with the 21st century. Health care should be a right in my opinion. I would pay more in taxes so that I could have healthy neighbors.

    What is that old saying..... "You can tell a lot about a society in how it treats its weakest members" ..... not sure who said it but I do say that it does ring true.

    Peace 🙂

    September 22, 2010 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
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