March 11th, 2014
07:32 AM ET
9 years ago

CNN Poll: Support for Obamacare slightly edges up

Washington (CNN) - Support for the country's new health care law appears to be rebounding slightly, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/ORC International survey released Tuesday indicates that nearly all of the increased support comes from upper-income and college-educated Americans.

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The poll's Tuesday release comes on the same day that a special election is being held in Florida's 13th Congressional District to fill a vacant U.S. House seat. Obamacare has become a major issue in the competitive contest to fill the remainder of the term of the late GOP Rep. Bill Young.

According to the poll, 39% of Americans say they support the health care law, up from 35% in December, a record low in CNN polling. The uptick of four percentage points is within the survey's sampling error. Fifty-seven percent of those questioned say they oppose the measure, down five points from December.

"Not all of the opposition to the health care law comes from the right," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Thirty-nine percent say they oppose the law because it's too liberal, but 12% say they oppose it because it's not liberal enough."

That means half the public either favors Obamacare, or opposes it doesn't go far enough. Roughly 6% oppose the law but don't have an opinion on whether it is too liberal or not liberal enough.

The poll indicates that the rebound in support for Obamacare has come almost entirely among upscale Americans. The law made no headway among people who make less than $50,000 - 35% of them supported it in December, and 35% support it now.  But among people who make $50,000 or more, support rose from 36% to 46%.

"The same pattern holds true for college education - virtually no change among people who never went to college, but a nine-point change among those who did," Holland adds.

The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International from Friday through Sunday, with 801 adults nationwide 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 report

soundoff (441 Responses)
  1. MaryM

    What you naysayers seem to forget is that millions of Americans that have pre existing conditions Now have health insurance and Also , the Majority of Americans Are covered under their employer provided health insurance.
    So all you naysayers , The ACA is here to stay.

    March 11, 2014 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  2. Tada!

    Obama Obama he is Barach Obama need CT scan? Oh yes we can....he pass the health care plana!

    March 11, 2014 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  3. Dave

    The one thing they forget to mention is that 74% of the public wants the Affordable Care Act to be fixed or left alone. 3/4 of the public at least is for healthcare reform. Republicans better have an alternative because 'NO' will end up costing them any power they have, but red-state level. Americans are tired of shutdown politics.

    March 11, 2014 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  4. bayrat

    And the Republican alternative is stay the course.We pay more for insurance and get less than any other country.The insurance companies are acting as death panels(by denying coverage and medicine.

    March 11, 2014 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  5. pbcalif

    Those people who have negative thoughts on the ACA are in those states like NC, TX, TN, states controlled by the right wing press who blather out nonsense about President Obama and the ACA nonstop. These people are mostly not college educated and live in areas where they have access to one-sided media.

    March 11, 2014 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    "... ... The Affordable Care Act has no limits on premiums or rate increases, extremely high out of pocket expenses, treats Americans as though they were THINGS, not people, and attempts to balance costs and benefits via market forces, under the same set of assumptions used in California to fund schools with lottery ticket sales. It doesn't work, will never work, and should never have been passed. ... ..."
    The truth of the matter is that ACA does impose limits on premiums, deductibles, and caps the maximum annual out-of-pocket expenses. The ACA also mandates that most preventive care be provided at no extra charge. It's when you begin going in for procedures and treatments is when out-of-pocket expenses kick in. If you think that the annual caps are too high, then you have never really experienced out-of-pocket expenses for a major medical procedure. All of what is written above is misinformation, not based in fact or reality.

    March 11, 2014 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  7. wznm

    the problem is getting folks to understand how it works for them. with Insurance always pros and cons; but if it makes you better off then that is key.

    March 11, 2014 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  8. quidestveritas

    I wonder what the numbers would be if the law had not been amended and delayed half a million times. I wouldn't be surprised if the last executive act Obama takes is to push back implementation until the day after the 2016 presidential election.

    March 11, 2014 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  9. Devan

    How To Opt Out Of Obamacare. Know your options and become savvy self-pay patients. Join a health care sharing ministry. These are voluntary, charitable membership organizations that agree to share medical bills among the membership. They function similar to insurance, and are probably the best alternative to conventional health insurance. There are four of them, at least that I know of. Three are open only to practicing Christians (Samaritan Ministries, Christian Healthcare Ministries, and Christian Care Ministry) while a fourth, Liberty HealthShare, is open to anyone who agrees with their ethical commitment to religious liberty. They operate entirely outside of Obamacare’s regulations, and typically offer benefits for about half the cost of similar health insurance. Members are also exempt from having to pay the tax for being uninsured. From the article by Sean Parnell at The Federalist.

    March 11, 2014 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  10. Kareem

    It has been an absolutely nightmare for my family, we're having to pay $3,500 MORE than in previous years AND we don't to keep the same doctor that we've used for the past decade...I can't believe I voted for this.

    March 11, 2014 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  11. waitaminute

    So if the new poll shows results that are within the old poll sampling error, how can you call it a slight uptick? Knowledge of statistics says that there could actually be less support now.
    No wonder this is the crowd that believes the global warming pseudoscience.

    March 11, 2014 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  12. Jose Hose-B

    A CNN/ORC Poll? Hardly an 'unbiased' measure, wouldn't you say? We all know that CNN is Obama's biggest cheerleader, and this concocted poll is yet another fabrication meant to prop up Obamacare and Obama. Walk the streets and ask people – across the board Americans want this law repealed.

    March 11, 2014 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  13. Crashman

    The GOP's biggest fear is coming true - people are finding out that the ACA is a good idea and it works. Is it perfect? Of course not. What law is. But it's a vast improvement over the disaster that the US Healthcare system was before. We had the best healthcare in the world with one of the worst healthcare systems. Now that's improving. But the GOP wants you to think otherwise, anything to avoid giving Obama a "win".

    March 11, 2014 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  14. Rudy NYC


    Sure, we believe you, and you can keep your plan. Nice try with the big lie.
    Okay, let's call the understatement a lie. How many lies did Republicans tell about the ACA?

    "Death Panels" Yeah, right. A panel of 24 people are going to make millions upon millions of decisions per day.

    "Takes away your Medicare" Yeah, right. Conservatives have yet to show produce one victim.

    "Obamaacare took away my plan" Yeah, right. Your plan from 4 years ago, when it was passed, would have changed with or without the law, anyway.

    "Obamacare costs me more" Yeah, right. Your old plan would have cost you more had you actually needed it.

    March 11, 2014 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  15. Mikey

    So, 39% of the population is too lazy to get a job or improve their situation so everyone else gets to fork over money to provide free or cheap health care for them. I see. Thats great – Govt sponsored theft. Meanwhile, medium sized businesses are reeling from this Barry Care nonsense. So, jobs will be lost, costs will soar, but its OK because we covered a bunch of do-nothings. I got it.

    March 11, 2014 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  16. Dorothy

    I support the ACA, mostly because at least we are trying to do something. For years, insurance companies raised premiums more and more while cut benefits. But I could also say I oppose ACA. I would much prefer if we eliminated for profit insurance companies and go for single payer. Why should people's health be tied to profits ever? There are just some things that shouldn't be tied to profits. A single payer plan would eliminate job lock. People could take more risks by starting businesses or going back to school, instead of keeping a job, so they can have insurance. Baby boomers could retire earlier, so that the younger generation can get those jobs.

    March 11, 2014 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  17. Jolat

    Three guarantees with EVERY government program. It cost more than they said it would, it takes longer to implement than they said it would, it won't perform the way they said it would.

    March 11, 2014 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  18. really

    Worded another way, 60% of people don't approve of it. We all know the number of those signing up are not meeting expectations, the majority are simply falling into medicaid subsidized by those of us who pay taxes.

    Rest assured, if the 'give me everything for free crowd' gets it for free, they approve.

    Sorry, yet another Govt program that will fail like every other bloated, ill-concieved and unfunded program.

    March 11, 2014 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  19. Jake

    ACA is just out of the gate. If this is such a great program why does the President keep delaying key provisions? Why is the media writing articles about "....rebounding.."? Remember "If you like your health care plan you can keep it" The President flat out lied. And the liberals want to contiue his lie. The fact of the matter is that the ACA will result in higher premiums. For those that want to wing it and opt out by paying the 1% of pay's going to cost you a lot more than 1%. Wake up people....this President is full of it.

    March 11, 2014 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  20. Anonymous

    Wow, CNN is the Obama news cheerleader. 39% approve, that means overwhelmingly most Americans do not approve.

    March 11, 2014 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  21. hubert39

    More people liking Obamacare? Yes. Just like when SS and Medicare came along. Some people hated the two.
    Remember Conservatives don't like change or new ideas. It takes them around 10 to 20 years to get use to new policies, inventions etc.
    20 plus years ago Conservatives said they would never have a computer, cell phone or cable TV. Have they changed their minds?? Write down what Conservatives hate today and look 20 years from now. What's funny? They will deny this and get angry when you bring the subject to them.

    March 11, 2014 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  22. Robert N. constant

    As usual, the CNN headlines are misleading. Read the article and you will see a majority want "Obamacare" to be even more liberal.or support it the way it is? Who is writing your headlines, CNN? Gingrich?

    March 11, 2014 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  23. KBNJ

    $50k is 'upscale'?!?! Funny stuff.
    39% approval rate tells me two things:
    – Other than pre-existing conditions and 1 or 2 other items that could be written into ONE page, it should be repealed
    – 39% of Americans, college ed or not, aren't so bright

    March 11, 2014 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  24. liberal disease

    When Barry and His family sign up with congress i will give it a look then.If it is so good why do unions run away from it?

    March 11, 2014 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  25. vintel7

    This data is clear in its findings. Most of the people that oppose the Affordable Care Act are either too stupid to understand it or are brainwashed by the republicans $20 billion dollar Anti Healthcare Reform propaganda/disinformation campaign.

    Yes!!! Let's go back to doctors and health insurance companies turning people away for pre-existing conditions!

    Let's go back to being a nation heading for insolvency because of our inflated capitalist health care system.

    Let's go back to being a nation where 40 million people have no health insurance and cannot afford it.

    We have all heard plenty of mindless criticism from the republicans but never once has a solution been offered to solve the problems mentioned above. As always, the do nothing, care about no one Republicans do not have a plan or any realistic ideas beyond their politically motivated No. We need solutions, not a mindless Republican no machine.

    March 11, 2014 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
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