Approximately six weeks before Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act) opens its health insurance exchanges throughout the United States, a Gallup poll taken this past week indicates that more Americans disapprove than approve of the federal law, according to Gallup on Thursday.
In fact, it’s not even close. Forty-nine percent of those surveyed disapprove of Obamacare and only 41 percent approve. The remaining participants in the survey have no opinion on the matter. The disapproval of the health care system has been consistent with Americans since Congress passed the bill, since the Supreme Court narrowly approved of the bill, and since President Barack Obama signed the bill.
In addition, the results of the survey taken on Aug. 17 and 18, 2013, indicates that more Americans are pessimistic than optimistic about Obamacare’s impact on Americans’ future. Less than one-fourth think it will make their family’s healthcare circumstances better while more than one-third claim that the federal health care program will make their circumstances worse.
When asked if Obamacare will make the healthcare situation throughout the nation better, only 35 percent said that the healthcare circumstances in the United States will improve while 44 percent believe Obamacare will make healthcare in the country worse. This negativity of Obamacare has not changed throughout the summer, according to Gallup’s research, in spite of President Obama’s strong effort to get Americans to buy-into the unpopular program.
Specifically, when asked how the Affordable Care Act will affect your family’s healthcare situation, 38 percent stated that it will make things worse, 24 percent said it will make things better, and 34 percent don’t think it will make much difference. When asked, in general, how the health care program will affect the health care situation throughout the country, 44 percent said it will make things worse, while only 35 percent believe it will make things worse and 15 percent don’t think it will make much difference.
Despite the Obama administration’s effort to increase awareness about the new law, only 15 percent of Americans claim they are very familiar with the law. Fifty-three percent say they are somewhat familiar with it, 18 percent say they are not too familiar with it, and 12 percent say they are not knowledgeable of the new law at all. Again, there were those who were so confused that they had no opinion on the question.
Though young Americans – ages 18 to 34 - are the most crucial segment of society to bring any success of the program, they are – by far - the most unfamiliar with the program. More than one-third (36 percent) of young people are not familiar with Obamacare. Only 10 percent say they are very familiar with it while 53 percent say they are somewhat familiar. The other two age groups claim – ages 35 to 54 and 55 or older – are about the same in saying they don’t know much about the new law either, as only 18 percent in each age group say they are very familiar with the program.
In spite of young people overwhelming admitting they know little about the program, they are basically split as to whether they approve or disapprove of the program: 40 percent say they disapprove while 44 percent say they approve. Again, the other two (older aged) groups are much more disapproving. More than half of the 35-to-54 year olds and 55-and-older persons disapprove with only 40 percent approving.
According to Gallup, the implications of this survey shows that the Obama administration has much more work to do before Oct. 1 to get people in line – literally – to sign up for the program as they are, for the most part, disapproving and uninformed about Obamacare in spite of the multimillion dollar campaign to educate people and to win them over.