Trump and his fellow Republicans, who control Congress, have
promised to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, known as
Obamacare, but a majority of Americans, including 25 percent of
Republicans polled, do not want it to be repealed.
The law has been credited with helping about 20 million people get
insurance coverage. Only one in five Americans would repeal the law
immediately, the poll found.
Republicans were sharply divided, with 25 percent of those polled
wanting to keep it intact or fix problem parts. Some 32 percent
would repeal it immediately, while 44 percent would wait to repeal
it once an alternative plan is ready to go.
"There is some recognition, even from Republican supporters, that
the underlying goals of the law are worthwhile," said Jack Hoadley,
a research professor at Georgetown University's Health Policy
Institute. "They still want something done, they don’t want it to
About 10 percent of Democrats polled would keep the 2010 law as it
is and another 70 percent want it to remain intact with some fixes.
Some 19 percent of them want the law repealed, including 13 percent
who want a replacement passed first.
Respondents interviewed by Reuters said they want the U.S. Congress
to address problems such as the rising cost of healthcare but even
many Republicans who have insurance don’t want it scrapped without a
"I'm afraid if you just repeal, people will lose it," said Kathy
Dugas, a Republican who works as a dietician near Jackson,
Mississippi, which has one of the country's highest obesity rates.
"Healthcare should be about people, not about politics,” she said.
“There has to be something to take care of people."
Some congressional Republicans have expressed concern about starting
a repeal absent clarity about how to replace provisions of the
complicated and far-reaching law, but Congress is under pressure
from Trump to act quickly.
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On Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a fiscal 2017
budget by a vote of 227-198, nearly along party lines, that
establishes a reconciliation procedure to shield an Obamacare repeal
from Senate filibusters.
The Reuters poll mirrors findings from a poll released in early
January by the Kaiser Family Foundation that also found the public
divided: Almost half the people in that poll wanted the law repealed
but 28 percent of that group want to know the details of the
replacement before Obamacare is scrapped.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online in English in all 50
states. The question on Obamacare included responses from 2,232
American adults, including 951 Democrats and 879 Republicans. It has
a credibility interval, a measure of accuracy, of 2 percentage
points for the entire group, and 4 percentage points for the
Democrats and Republicans.
(Reporting by Jilian Mincer Editing by Caroline Humer and Chris Kahn
and James Dalgleish)
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