Granted, the NYT poll that’s also out tonight shows him considerably stronger on the issue, but even there you’ve got massive majorities saying they’re concerned that the cost of care will go up (59 percent) and the quality of care will go down (69 percent). And like I say, that’s the “good” poll.
Here’s the one we’re concerned with.
In mid-June, the public was evenly divided when asked whether it thought Mr. Obama’s health plan was a good idea or bad idea. The new poll, conducted July 24-27, found 42% calling it a bad idea versus 36% who said it was a good idea. Among those with insurance, the portion calling the plan a bad idea rose to 47% from 37%…
On health care, there was another worrisome sign for the president: Only two in 10 people predicted the quality of their own care would improve under the Obama plan, and just 15% of those with private insurance thought it would. Twice as many overall, and three times as many with private coverage, predicted their own care would get worse.
Not only is he now in net negative territory on the subject…
…but note the swing among from April to July between those who don’t have an opinion to those who expect care will deteriorate. All the more reason to cherish the August recess as a chance to further educate the public about the plan.
Here’s an especially amazing shift. Look how many people have reoriented towards worries about rationing in just the past month.
I know it’s uncharacteristic, but I’m actually feeling a frisson of … optimism, dare I say it. The whole survey’s almost unvarnished good news. Almost:
Update: A runner-up for quote of the day from one of the pollsters who conducted this survey:
“This is a president who needs a vacation,” says Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart, who conducted the survey with Republican pollster Bill McInturff. “His job rating is … certainly an acceptable mark. But if you look at it over time, it has [gone] south without a doubt.”…
But the poll, McInturff says, makes it clear that Obama — who had been gliding above the partisan fray — has come back down to earth. Conservatives and Republicans have moved away from him, while his numbers in the South and Midwest have declined.
“The question I asked back in February was: When does political gravity take hold?” he said. “The answer is in this survey. It is happening right now.”