Obamacare — worse than doing nothing

According to a Rasmussen survey released today, only 35 percent of Americans believe that passage of the bill “currently working its way through Congress” would be better than not passing any health care legislation this year. 54 percent of Americans disagree, believing that it would be better to pass no bill.
The poll question is a bit misleading because there is no single bill working its way through Congress at this time. However, the results show pretty clearly that the Democrats are losing the health care debate.
Democratic voters, of course, are still behind their party on this issue, though not overwhelmingly – 60 percent of Dems favor passing the legislation in Congress over doing nothing. But among independents, the split is 23 percent for and 66 percent against.
The Dems’ approach to health care is particularly unpopular with the middle class. The most strongly opposed income cluster consists of those that making $40,000 to $75,000 a year. Those making $20,000 of less are evenly divided; every other group is opposed.
In a normal environment, these poll numbers would be fatal. But because the Democrats have such commanding majorities in both chambers, and because President Obama is so committed to passing legislation, it would be unwise to assume that the Dems won’t be able to enact legislation along the lines now being pushed in the House. In fact, if it were up to the House alone, I’d probably bet that such legislation would pass. With the Senate in the picture, the outlook is more problematic, and it may be that the Democrats will need to compromise substantially in order to have a good shot at avoiding the embarrassment of passing nothing.
Yet the Rasmussen poll suggests that for Democrats in swing states or districts, nothing would be a pretty cool hand.


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