Americans also have increasing doubts as to how well the government can compete with private insurers. Just under half of those questioned said the government would do a worse job providing medical coverage – only 36 percent said it would do better, marking a change since earlier this summer.

There has also been a significant drop in the percentage that says government would be better than insurers at keeping costs down; from 59 percent in June to 47 percent now. Still, more said the government rather than private insurers would do a better job containing costs.

Most Americans have heard or read something about the protestors who attended recent town hall meetings on health care reform. Among those who have heard about them, almost half (49 percent) said the protestors do not reflect the views of most Americans, but 41 percent said they do.