Saturday, June 20, 2009

Poll: 72% Back Public Health Care Option - CBS News

"A clear majority of Americans -- 72 percent -- support a government-sponsored health care plan to compete with private insurers, a new CBS News/New York Times poll finds. Most also think the government would do a better job than private industry at
keeping down costs and believe that the government should guarantee health care for all Americans."
When presented with the option of a government-administered health insurance plan similar to Medicare to compete with private health insurance companies, 72 percent are in favor and just 20 percent oppose. Even 50 percent of Republicans favor that option.

Still, the debate over government involvement in health care is highly partisan, with 61 percent of Republicans saying it is not the government's job to provide health care. Meanwhile, 85 percent of Democrats think the government does have this responsibility. Similarly, 63 percent of Republicans think government will do a worse job providing medical coverage, and 53 percent think it will do worse holding down costs. Among Democrats, about seven in 10 thinks government will do a better job on both.

Reactions are mixed as to whether the government should go as far as requiring all Americans to have health insurance, as long as it provides financial help to those who can’t afford it on their own. Forty-eight percent think the government should require this, while 38 percent think it should not.

The public, however, has acknowledged the need for sweeping changes to U.S. health care, with 51 percent saying it needs fundamental changes and another 34 percent saying there is so much wrong with it that it needs to be completely rebuilt. Just 13 percent think only minor changes are necessary.

More at CBS News

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