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NBC Poll on Health Reform

August 19, 2009

NBC released an interesting poll on health reform.  You can download the full poll and results by clicking here.  Here are my takeaways:

When the President’s plan is described,* people favor it 53% to 43%.

When asked if they think the President’s plan is a good or bad idea based on “what they’ve heard” (this was asked before the description of the plan was read) 36% of people think it’s a good idea and 42% think it’s a bad idea.  17% don’t know how they feel.

The jump in support when people hear an accurate description of the President’s plan is pretty remarkable, if you ask me.  However, I do take issue with the fact that it’s described as the “President’s plan,” when he’s only issued broad outlines and left the actual planning to Congress (right or wrong).  This is part of the problem, if you ask me.  People are attacking the “President’s plan” with claims of death panels and public options that kill the private sector when there is no single plan for which he is pushing.  With five bills in Congress and no clear sense of what will be the final product, it’s nearly impossible for supporters to have a clear rebuttal to these disingenuous attacks.  Jon Stewart recently captured the Democrat’s challenge well (though their messaging challenge is understandable).

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*The plan requires that health insurance companies cover people with pre-existing medical conditions.  It also requires all but the smallest employers to provide health coverage for their employees, or pay a percentage of their payroll to help fund coverage for the uninsured.  Families and individuals with lower- and middle- incomes would receive tax credits to help them afford insurance coverage.  Some of the funding for this plan would come from raising taxes on wealthier Americans.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 19, 2009 11:11 am

    I wouldn’t necessarily call anything coming out of the White House or the Congress as an “accurate description.” They twist and spin things so that they sound better to their base at least as much as the opposition does.

    Face it, the “plan” doesn’t even exist. A set of sweeping legislation, but there’s little detail in those bills.

  2. nseaver permalink
    August 19, 2009 11:21 am

    That wasn’t the White House’s description, it was NBC’s and the bipartisan pollsters (Bill McInturff and Peter Hart) hired by NBC.

  3. August 19, 2009 11:29 am

    I truly doubt that ABC runs anything like that without confirming the verbiage with the White House, but you could be right and it could be independent “analysis.” I would still hardly call it an “accurate description” since it utterly fails to mention or address 90% of the legislation.

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