The message from voters is loud and clear……health care is a top priority. A new poll just released by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that health care is the most important issue that voters want 2018 mid-term candidates to talk about during their campaigns.
Twenty-nine percent of respondents to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll said health care is the most important campaign issue, followed by jobs, immigration, North Korea, taxes, the budget deficit and, lastly, climate change.
But for the first time in nearly a decade, the GOP can’t get away with promising to repeal Obamacare if Americans only elect enough Republicans. Republicans spent most of 2017 trying — and failing — to roll back the Affordable Care Act, all while controlling Congress and the White House.
Although the GOP base is less interested in health care – the Kaiser poll found 39 percent of Democrats said it’s their top issue compared with just 13 percent of Republicans – nearly one-third of independent voters said that health care was the most important issue to them as the midterm elections loom.
The Washington Examiner pointed out that those numbers shifted a bit in battleground states, although health care remained near the top of the list. “When those voters were asked about their priorities, 34 percent said they wanted to hear most about the economy and jobs, while 23 percent prioritized the situation in North Korea and 22 percent prioritized immigration. A smaller group, 21 percent, prioritized healthcare.”
Healthexec.com focused attention on who voters believe should shoulder the blame for any perceived or real health care failures.
“As far as future responsibility for the ACA’s problems, 61 percent of voters overall said those would fall on President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans. This question also showed a partisan split, with 49 percent of Republicans saying any blame should fall on former President Barack Obama and the Democrats who helped pass the law.”
To that point ModernHealthcare.com wrote, “Congressional Republicans have sent mixed messages about whether they will take another shot at cutting and restructuring Medicaid after their failed attempts last year. The Kaiser survey results suggest that if they do try it again, Republicans will use language describing Medicaid as a welfare or entitlement program, which has less support than Medicaid itself.
TheHill.com added that only about one-third third of those polled realized that Congress repealed the ACA’s individual mandate through tax reform at the end of last year.
Of those surveyed by the Kaiser Family Foundation, 36 percent said they’re aware Congress repealed the requirement that most have insurance or pay a tax penalty, while 46 percent incorrectly said it has not been repealed.
The rest — 18 percent — were not sure.
The repeal doesn’t take effect until 2019, however.
Share your thoughts on the new poll and whether you believe health care will indeed be one of the main issues that helps determine winners and losers in the upcoming med-term elections. Driving meaningful conversations around the health issues making headlines is another way we are working toward our long-term goal of one day making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!