Those calling for the repeal of the Affordable Care Act are split on what to do should the law be repealed, a Kaiser Family Foundation poll finds.
Overall, the publics opinion about what Congress should do next with the ACA has remained fairly constant over time. Equal shares (28%) say they want Congress to expand what the law does or, conversely, want a complete repeal of the law. The remainder either want Congress to continue implementing the law as is (22%) or scale it back (12%), Kaiser finds in its latest tracking poll.
Recently, these numbers have held fairly constant in this monthly poll. In late June, 25% of those surveyed said they want to expand what the law does and 27% called for a full repeal. There is a narrowing of views toward an equal percentage, says Bianca DiJulio, associate director of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundations public opinion and survey research program in Menlo Park, Calif.
In this recent poll, conducted Aug. 6-11 of 1,200 adults in the United States, Kaiser for the first time asked Americans what should happen next if the law is repealed, and found a split answer.
Of those who want the ACA repealed in its entirety, 12% say Congress should replace the law with a Republican-sponsored alternative, while 11% say they would like the law repealed and not replaced. Although those opposed to the law disagree about what Congress should do, they have an unwavering desire for repeal, Kaiser reports. After being told of up to 19 million Americans potentially being uninsured should the law be repealed, just 3% changed to a favorable view of the law, the poll found.
On the ACA overall, the public remains closely divided on the law. Forty-four percent reported a favorable view of the law and 41% report an unfavorable view.
Views of the law remain tied to partisan views, DiJulio explains. Republicans feel very unfavorable [about the ACA]; Democrats feel more favorable, she says. That is something consistent over time in conducting the poll since the ACA passed. In the poll, 76% of Democrats hold a favorable view, while 71% of Republicans have an unfavorable one. It was a statistically even split for independents, with 46% unfavorable and 39% favorable.
DiJulio does not expect much to change drastically in these percentages. Depending on partisan affiliations, that is highly predictable how they feel about the law and what happens moving forward, she says.
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