Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Majority Says The A.C.A. Should Be Replaced With Federally-Funded Program Providing Insurance For All

The chart above was made from information in a recent Gallup Poll -- done between May 6th and 8th of a random national sample of 1,549 adults, with a margin of error of 3 points.

This shows a dramatic shift in the attitudes of the public on the place that government has in helping to cover all Americans with insurance. Not too long ago, only a minority believed the government should have a role in providing health insurance for citizens. Now a majority (58%) says the government should provide health insurance for all citizens through a federally-funded program.

I think the success of Obamacare has helped to change the public's mind. Currently, only 25% say Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act) should be repealed, while 73% say it should not. That does not mean people are completely satisfied with Obamacare. They want it improved, and as the chart shows, 58% want a federally-funded program providing insurance for all Americans.

A lot of progressives on social media have interpreted this to mean that the 58% want a single-payer government-run health insurance system. But we need to be careful about making that assumption. The question asked was not about a single-payer system -- only a federally-funded system. It is easily possible that some of that 58% would rather see the federal government helping to buy private insurance -- or providing a mix of federally-funded private insurance and a public option.

I do believe we need a single-payer system in this country, and eventually we will progress to accomplishing that. But for now, I'm just happy that now a majority recognizes that the federal government does have a role in providing health insurance for all Americans. That's real progress.

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