Accelerated schedule for ObamaCare implementation not fooling anyone
posted at 12:15 pm on May 21, 2010 by Ed Morrissey
After watching popular revulsion over ObamaCare rise over the last several months, the Obama administration strategized that an accelerated roll-out of its provisions would increase its popularity. Over the last few weeks, the White House has pushed hard to advance its public relations by celebrating each early implementation, but a new survey shows that it hasn’t helped at all. In fact, Politico may underestimate how badly the effort is flopping (via Hugh Hewitt):
The White House has, for weeks now, rolled out popular health reform benefits well ahead of schedule, items like coverage for young adult children and tax credits for small business, hoping these early deliverables would shore up public support.
But a new poll, released this morning by the Kaiser Family Foundation, suggests the accelerated implementation schedule has failed to sway a skeptical public — or even keep health reform’s most ardent supporters on board. …
While overall attitudes were roughly unchanged from last month, the percentage of people who reported that they have “very favorable” opinions of the legislation fell from 23 percent to 14 percent during the month. At the opposite end of the spectrum, 32 percent of people reported “very unfavorable” opinions, up slightly from the 30 percent reported last month.
The Health Tracking Poll found that 41 percent of respondents hold favorable views of the law and 44 percent hold unfavorable views, with 14 percent unsure. It’s a slight difference from last month’s poll, which found 46 percent had favorable opinions and 40 percent unfavorable.
Well, it’s a little more than a slight difference. It’s a nine-point reversal in the gap, which is statistically significant. It also reverses the one poll on which Democrats could rely for a counterargument to the trend of unpopularity of their big health-care project. Kaiser has a chart demonstrating the movement:
Democrats insisted that implementation of ObamaCare would make the American public love it all the more. The data suggests otherwise, especially since the White House has accelerated the implementation of only the most popular aspects of the bill. The taxes and fees come later, and Democrats had hoped to build a store of goodwill before they hit.
The chart above reflects the numbers from the overall survey, but as Kaiser drills down into predictive territory on voting, the news gets progressively worse. ObamaCare gets a 41/44 net approval among adults at large, but among registered voters, the gap increases to 41/47. For likely voters — those most dependable to cast a vote in November — ObamaCare loses by ten points, 40/50. Among independent voters, it trails by twelve, 37/49.
Accelerating the rollout has bought Democrats nothing. Now, the big news stories will mainly focus on the less-pleasant milestones to come — and that will mean trouble for Democrats in November and in 2012.
Breaking on Hot Air