NYT poll: Practically no one expects Obamacare to go well

Written by . Posted in 2014 Campaigns, 2016 Campaigns, Issue Watch, Polling

Published on September 26, 2013

CaptureThe new New York Times/CBS poll shows President Obama underwater on his job approval, with 49 percent disapproving, 43 percent approving, and no gender gap whatsoever. Independents are even more sour on the president’s performance, at 50-40 unfavorable.

Fifty-one percent disapprove of Obamacare and only 39 percent approve. But that’s not the worst part of it — not even close. 

Only 26 percent buy the frequent Democratic argument that Obamacare will improve the economy. Forty-nine percent believe it will hurt the economy, with the remainder expecting it to have no effect. The Obamacare-economy argument that Republicans have been making hits a chord, or so says this poll.

Only 18 percent of Americans believe Obamacare will benefit them personally, versus 39 percent who expect to be harmed personally. The group most likely to predict a personal benefit? Democrats, at 31 percent. Right behind them are 18 to 29 year-olds, the least likely to benefit because of the way the law is designed, and the most likely to face large premium increases when the exchanges go online.

Only 10 percent say Obamacare has already helped them, as opposed to 39 percent who say it has already hurt them. People don’t seem that awed at the provisions Democrats talk about most as having helped everyone — free wellness visits, pre-existing conditions, the “slacker mandate” for children up to age 26, bans on coverage limits, etc.

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It’s also worth mentioning that the defund strategy gets low marks in this poll — 56 percent for and 38 percent against. But the poll shows why the defundistas are wrong to think it’s now-or-never. The law is unpopular, people expect it do more damage than good, and with all the delays and continued chaos at both the state and federal level, there is fertile ground for a repeal movement, so long as it’s framed correctly. 

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