Reason-Rupe Public Opinion Survey

New Poll: 32 Percent Still Like Federal Health Care Law


Although the public may support President Obama's proposal to change the way Social Security benefits are calculated, the president's health care law enjoys only tepid support. The latest Reason-Rupe poll finds only 32 percent of Americans say they liked the health care law when it was passed and still like it today. Seven percent liked the law when it was passed, but like it less now. Meanwhile, 45 percent disliked the health care law when it was passed and still dislike it. Four percent of Americans say they disliked the law when it passed, but like it more now. In sum, 52 percent are disappointed with the new health care law. 

Not surprisingly, opinions about the health care law map closely to strength of ones' partisanship. Sixty percent of partisan Democrats say they liked the law when it passed and still like it, compared to 43 percent of Independent-leaning Democrats. Eighty-two percent of partisan Republicans say they disliked the law when it passed and they still dislike it, as well as 80 percent of Independent-leaning Republicans. Non-partisan Independents side with Republicans with 57 percent who say they still dislike the law.

Higher levels of educational attainment are positively correlated with support for the health care law; but income is not signficantly correlated.

Younger Americans are more likely to still like rather than dislike the health care law. Yet, when taking race into account, a plurality of white millennials still dislike the law (42 to 32) whereas a plurality of non-white millenials still like the law 45 to 18. Nevertheless, white millenials are nearly 20 points less likely to dislike the health care law compared to their older peers (42 to 60). Moreover, older white and non-white Americans are more likely than younger Americans to dislike the new heath care law. These data suggest that both age and race/ethnicity have independent effects on support for the health care law.

A majority (55 percent) of white Americans still dislike the health care law, while 71 percent of African-Americans still like the law. Latinos are evenly divided with 33 percent who still dislike the law and 29 percent who still support it. Taking into account race and gender, only a majority (52 percent) of non-white females still like the health care law, compared to 40 percent of non-white males 26 percent of white females, and 23 percent of white males.

Nationwide telephone poll conducted May 9-13 2013 interviewed 1003 adults on both mobile (503) and landline (500) phones, with a margin of error +/- 3.7%. Princeton Survey Research Associates International executed the nationwide Reason-Rupe survey. Columns may not add up to 100% due to rounding. Full poll results found here. Full methodology can be found here. Demographics and detailed tables are available here.

NEXT: Chinese Graffiti on Egyptian Historical Site Goes Viral in China

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. What percentage of people disliked the health care law when it was passed, but like alt-text now?

    1. The percentage of people that read H&R (minus Caucasian SubAsian, shrike, Tony and Joe).

    2. Get over it. There was a vote on alt-texts, you lost. Elections have consequences!

    3. Obamacare provides counseling for people who are addicted to alt-text.

      How do you like the law now?

      1. I’m “addicted” to alt-text like I’m “addicted” to breathing, sex, and good tasting food.

        1. Nobody needs good tasting food.

      2. What’s the medical code for that?

        1. Um, er, uh, 27B/6?

    4. In other news, 32% of Americans would support Obama establishing ethnic cleansing drives for their own race and/or ethnicity.

      For the the children.

    5. my best friend’s ex-wife makes $89 an hour on the internet. She has been fired from work for five months but last month her income was $21940 just working on the internet for a few hours. Go to this web site and read more….. http://WWW.DAZ7.COM

      1. Sometimes I wonder if I should pay someone to be on the internet and harass Reason staff about alt-text.

        Or maybe I should make a bot. Doherty once made a joke about me being one.

        FYI crappy bot: that “few hours” would have to be about 250 hours for the month, or roughly 50 a week.

  2. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Any law that doesn’t enjoy wide support among the electorate is a dumb law. The more power behind that law, the dumber it is. We need a constitutional amendment that requires all laws to pass both chambers with 75% or more of the vote.

    1. Better yet, a House of Repeal. 35% of the vote gets any law or spending revoked – with no need of Presidential approval.

    2. Ive suggested 90%. The laws that matter can get 90% support.

      1. Yep. Poll people on rape, murder, theft, and fraud.

        1. Actually, poll people outside of DC on the above subjects. I am not at all certain you would get 90% “Against” any of those inside the beltway.

          1. Who cares? All are state crimes.

  3. So the people who are already seeing their health insurance costs skyrocket dislike the law, while the ones who will not see their costs skyrocket until next year still like it.

    1. So the people who are already seeing their health insurance costs skyrocket dislike the law, while the ones who will not see their costs skyrocket until next year still like it.

      And those who will be covered due to my premium skyrocketing fucking love it!

  4. What is the percentage of people who know what is in the law and how it will effect them and their family? I bet that it would be less then 32%.

    1. I wonder what the results would have been if they hadn’t included the term “Obamacare” in the question.

      1. “Government Mandated Tax-Increases and Insurance Hikes”? That might not be so popular.

    2. Probably. I’ve heard people sing the praises of Obama’s single-payer health care.

  5. OT: Mother Jones posts a video about how easy it is to build an untraceable, unregistered AK-47 from parts kits during a build party, apparently to horrify its readers about this awful practice.

    Lew Rockwell reposts this article to inform its readers about this opportunity, presumably because many of their readers would like to build their own AK-47.

    Hilarity ensues.

    1. …and no mention of how receivers are dealt with, apparently by either side.

      1. Care to enlighten us? Or rather, enlighten me? Unlike apparently everyone else here, I’m not a card-carrying carrier.

        1. In order to get the receiver from a dealer, you have to have a background check.

        2. The lower receiver is the only part that’s considered a *gun* by law.

          To get it you have to jump through the same hoops as buying a whole firearm even though every other part can be bought without a background check.

          That’s part of the hysteria surrounding 3d printed guns – we are now at the point where you can print a fully functional (even with automatic capability) lower receiver – completely out of sight of any sort of government regulation and just buy the rest of the parts off the internet.

          And in a few years you may be able to print all the other parts also.

          1. Thanks. The context makes a little more sense, even if the debate over the context still makes none.

        3. Sorry. I get so used to everyone here knowing about guns. mlg & Ag covered it well.

      2. That’s what I want to know. How did he get the receiver. Because I want to build my own AK47 right now.

        1. I assumed it was an 80% complete one. Of course, if that’s too far along, you can always make one out of a shovel.

          It’s been posted here before, but it really deserves to be posted all the time, as great as it is.

    2. And because we’re assembling the guns for our own “personal use,” whatever that may entail

      I always say, being a pants-shitting progressive must be so freaking exhausting. To be so afraid all the time and so cynical about people not like you. How do they stand it?

      1. I always say, being a pants-shitting progressive must be so freaking exhausting. To be so afraid all the time and so cynical about people not like you. How do they stand it?

        By doing everything they can to force the rest of us to act like them via the force of government.

      2. My roommate goes out to the desert to shoot his AK every weekend with his friends.

        Yesterday he walked out the front door with the thing on his shoulder, loaded magazine inserted – its not even an issue here.

        Heck I’ve ridden across town on my motorcycle with a lever-action slung on my back.

        1. So, you’re commenting from … SOMALIA?!

          1. The man said he’s ridden across town, implying ROADZ.

            ROADZ can only exist in progressive utopias.

            1. Psh, it can’t be a utopia if there are GUNZ. He must be part of Rethuglikkkan melitia invasion force.

    3. OT, but true story and on-topic of this post… I got to shoot two AK-47s over the weekend. It. Was. AWESOME.

      1. There are definitely practical reasons for why it’s the most replicated design series in firearms history.

    4. I like that LRC wrote that Mother Jones is “liberal leaning”. Much in the same way George Wallace was slightly bigoted.

  6. OT:Touchdown Fever: Obama goes 0 for 5. Christie goes 1 for 1.

    I expect skill at arcade games would correlate directly with ability to govern. After all, the more time you spend gaming, the less time you spend in the office ruining other peoples’ lives.

    1. I’m surprised he didn’t step in front of Christie and yell, “Intercepted!

      1. “Never sleep on Barry O. Don’t ever sleep on Barry O.”

        1. Those skits are the worst part of their act.

  7. Wait until the bureaucrats running healtcare do what the people at the IRS did and target people to be exculded or penalized when they need healthacre coverage based on their political leanings. That’s when everyone will finally see the genius of this law and all the good it will do. Can you imagine the savings when people that will not provide the appropriate level of kow-towing get told to fuck off and die already?

  8. Four percent of Americans say they disliked the law when it passed, but like it more now.

    Now that they’ve seen its wonderful effects? WTF? This might mean “Four percent of respondents misheard the question, or are insane.”

    1. I went with “about half of americans are insane, 4% drastically more so”

    2. They saw a meme on their Facebook feed that says Obamacare is working to reduce premiums.

  9. African-Americans aren’t that disproportionately uninformed, are they?

  10. 32% of the country is getting very excited about the totally free fantastic healthcare they are about to be gifted.

  11. If you don’t currently have insurance and think this will provide you with free healthcare, I am sure you love this. The painful reality will come when the fine from the IRS comes instead of a refund/credit.

    1. Any word on whether you can game your deductions for this? Last I knew the penalty only comes from your refund, which means a simply trip to HR Block will dispense with this entire law.

      1. The way I understand it they can only deduct it from a refund. However they can still add penalties and interest to the unpaid fine. If you alter your with holdings and under pay you can be penalized which does not come with the protection of obamacare. If at a later filing you have a refund they can deduct the unpaid interest and penalties. I am not an expert by any means. So take it for what it’s worth.

        1. Ah, yes – altering withholdings will probably only be a one-time gig. After that your tax liability will just go up commensurate to the fine.

  12. What is striking is that large majorities of both Republicans and Independents object to the law. All the law has left is Democrats. And it is hard to believe that most of them don’t support it out of blind loyalty and hardheadedness. I doubt there is anyone who likes the law out of anything but partisan reasons.

    1. Actually much of the opposition is also opposed out of branding issues as well – much to my frustration.

      This whole episode neatly encapsulates why I hate democracy – the preponderance of votes are being cast by people who literally don’t understand what it is that they are opining on.

      With that being said, I am utterly amazed at the utter absence of any principled argument for the law. There are many reasons why the law is a bad idea, but in my conversations with enthusiastic proponents for the law, the rationales they give invariably have no connection with the actual provisions of the law. One gal strenuously argued that the law would make health insurance lower cost for the average consumer by raining the rampant profiteering in the industry – that the very size of the law demonstrated how well regulated the industry would be, precluding them from cowboy pricing. Yes, she seriously argued that the MA insurance market actually was too free-markety.

      Whenever I walk down Myrtle St in Boston, I look at the house where Lysander Spooner lived and died, and heave a sigh of sadness.

      1. The left’s prevailing motif is that something, anything, must be done. There’s not a lot of room for principles.

        1. The left has principals, not principles. They judge the merit of an idea based upon who it came from, as opposed to the idea itself. That’s why they feel that ad hominems win arguments, because the merit of the idea changes the more shit you talk about the person who came up with it.

          That’s a roundabout way of saying that the law must be good because it’s Obama’s idea, and anyone who says otherwise is a racist corporate apologist.

          1. Mentioning Obama is a racialist dog whistle. I don’t have to give credence to such an obvious bigot.

            I like the ple/pal distinction, though. I’m stealing that.

        2. It’s “Politician’s Logic” from Yes, Minister: “We must do something, this is something, therefore we must do this.”

      2. The amount of disinformation concerning the health care/health insurance market is astonishing. I like how it is presumed that these insurance companies have all of this bureaucracy for kicks and giggles. I also like how it is assumed that just because Americans spend more on health care than other countries that somehow demonstrates we’re getting ripped off on a massive scale instead of assuming that we just have different priorities, especially when it comes to extraordinary measures at end-of-life care.

        1. But, but, but unlike insurance companies, government doesn’t waste money on profits to the rich!

          That’s why single payer will be so much more efficient! No profits to the rich!

          It’s the rich and their profits that are keeping us down!


          Rich people!

          With monocles!

          1. If you want to blow the mind of one of those people, point out that the total profits of all the big health insurance companies are dwarfed by the amount of fraud in Medicare and Medicaid.

            1. But, but, but that’s only because of the sheer volume that those programs handle!
              And, and, and it’s not because they lack good intentions!
              And, and, and much of that “fraud” is needed care that the for-profit insurance companies would have denied, so it’s actually a good thing!

        2. Plus every time someone from Canada comes here for a procedure, or an illegal immigrant goes to an emergency room, or a woman from China flies to LA to have a baby in the US, or a porn star gets a boob job, or a widow gets some botox, it counts as “US health care spending” and somehow proves that the government needs to take it over.

      3. One gal strenuously argued that the law would make health insurance lower cost for the average consumer by raining the rampant profiteering in the industry

        Not sure I would call Obama’s Toiletpaper a “gal” but it has been saying that for months.

        1. Doesn’t PBP also argue that because the law hasn’t come into full effect, it’s had no impact whatsoever on the private sector?

          1. Yeah, O’s Anal Beads does argue that. It is mirth inspiring for the rest of us, however.

          2. and it hasn’t affected spending yet either…

  13. This is a law brainstormed by republicans and implemented by a republican governor in a BLUE state.

    Other than Obama being president, had McCain won the election, no one other than libertarians would complain about it.

    1. This may surprise you, but some people actually have principles and judge ideas and policy based not upon the TEAM that came up with it, but on those principles.

      I do know that that probably doesn’t compute in that leftist noggin of yours, but your inability to comprehend something doesn’t make it any less true.

    2. If McCain and the Republicans had proposed and unilaterally passed that execrable law, Alice honey, the Democratic party and its supporters would be all over how awful the law was.

      I say, you sure are cute when you demsplain stuff to us.

      1. the Democratic party and its supporters would be all over how awful the law was.

        Only because it doesn’t take us straight to single payer.

      2. The democrats in Mass seem to like it OK. Or at least try to maintain that pretense.

        1. Exactly.

          Regardless of a “Republican”, Mass was just fine and there was no Romney-Care Witch Hunt.

          1. yeah, having some of the highest insurance rates around must be paradise.

            1. I should point out that Republicans in MA come mainly in two flavors:

              Anti-catholic progressives.
              Military-Industrial-Complex Worshippers (give them money for guns and they are very happy).

              There is also a small libertarian-leaning minority that supply place-holder candidates to act as electoral fodder.

              1. Anti-Catholic progressives? Seriously? This represents a non-negligible portion of the MA GOP? What prevents them from integrating into the other progressive MA party? The Kennedys?

          2. ALice, honey, as a Massachusetts resident, I amused by you and Zeb’s simplistic attempt to claim that only partisanship explains opposition to Obama/Romneycare:

            In MA, the progressive Republicans and the progressive Democrats came up with a corporatist screw-the-poor proposal they both loved.

            It’s like arguing that the NRA membership of Democratic legislators in Texas proves that Democrats are only opposed to the 2nd amendment because it’s republicans proposing it.

      3. Alice is a dude.

  14. You have to account for the 10% who believe anything. I’d pretty sure that 10% of the U.S. right now think that Hitler was just misunderstood. And that he was an alien.

    1. New Idea: Hitler is Kahn’s time traveling love child.

      Who is the mother?

      1. Salma Hayek. That’s where Khan’s Mexican accent came from.

        1. Wait a minute! I thought she was like married to that economist or something!

          1. Yeah, like no woman ever cheated on her husband.

            It was that mustache that did her – she always had a thing for Chaplan.

          2. Married to? She is that economist.

            1. Married to? She is that economist.

              “THIS is that economist.”

        2. Having Salma Hayek for a mother would also explain his raw personal magnetism.

          1. And his unusually developed pecs.

            1. I am confused. Perhaps I didn’t make it clear what I meant: who does Kahn impregnate with his superior sperm (probably burrow right through a condom), thus yielding the baby that will eventually time travel to become Hitler?

              Not “who is Kahn’s mom”.

              1. Why can’t Kahn’s mom also be the mother of Kahn’s child?

                If we’re time travelling, Kahn might not have been as creeped out as Marty McFly.

                1. Kahn was genetically engineered. I had always assumed this meant the didn’t really have a mother, but perhaps it was more of a selective breeding process.

                  Perhaps Kahn is the the Phillip J. Fry of the Trek universe.

                  1. Well, even a totally engineered person would presumably still need to be grown in a woman. Even the Tleilaxu couldn’t completely get around that.

                    1. This conversation sounds familiar.

                    2. Yes it is, Pro Lib. Yes it is.

              2. Time travel is confusing like that.

                1. Khan didn’t have a mother. Augments were incubated in an artificial womb. The donated egg was stripped of genetic material to act as a host for for a chromosomally complete “sperm” that was wholly engineered.

                  1. Tell me only the good things about your mother, Khan.

              3. And, if Hitler’s mom was Salma Hayek, it would totally explain his magnetism.

      2. Her name is Loretta, but she prefers Lottie.

  15. 32%? Well that’s good enough for democracy.

  16. What does the 12% wedge represent? Did I miss that somewhere?

    1. Good question. I suspect it’s the “Don’t know/don’t care” response.

      1. I would think it’s the “racist” option, except that’s already covered with the red, pink, and dark yellow colors.

      2. The ‘Fuck you, quit calling here’ contingent?

  17. Serious question, Emily: What percent like the law — of those who have actually read it?

    1. What is zero/zero?

      My spreadsheet hates it when I do that.

      1. Use MATLAB. You get a nice clean NaN.

  18. 18% of Libertarians have to turn in their cards.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.