CNN reports ObamaCare approval “rebounding”
posted at 8:01 am on March 11, 2014 by Ed Morrissey
This will undoubtedly appear in everyone’s timelines today as we approach the deadline to avoid the tax consequences of ObamaCare’s individual mandate. After several months of cratering in the polls, CNN reports today that its approval rating is “rebounding slightly.” How slightly? It doesn’t even get outside the margin of error — or crack the 40% mark:
According to the poll, 39% of Americans say they support the health care law, up from 35% in December, a record low in CNN polling. The uptick of four percentage points is within the survey’s sampling error. Fifty-seven percent of those questioned say they oppose the measure, down five points from December.
In other words, a majority still opposes it, and the gap between the two is still about 20 points. The change in question is within the margin of error, at least on the disapproval number, which means that there has been no significant change at all. That’s why polls include that notation. This is just a continuation of the status quo since the ObamaCare rollout late last year.
CNN tries another tactic to argue that the high disapproval numbers don’t mean what readers think it means:
“Not all of the opposition to the health care law comes from the right,” said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Thirty-nine percent say they oppose the law because it’s too liberal, but 12% say they oppose it because it’s not liberal enough.”
That means half the public either favors Obamacare, or opposes it doesn’t go far enough. Roughly 6% oppose the law but don’t have an opinion on whether it is too liberal or not liberal enough.
It’s difficult to believe that the first sentence of that second paragraph in the excerpt made it through the editing process, or that CNN thought the argument was worth making. Yes, there have been critics from the Left who wanted a single-payer system instead of ObamaCare, but they have been there all along. The point is that the law has little public support, while opposition to it is the broad consensus.
Support did go up for one sector, but those results are a bit counterintuitive:
The poll indicates that the rebound in support for Obamacare has come almost entirely among upscale Americans. The law made no headway among people who make less than $50,000 – 35% of them supported it in December, and 35% support it now. But among people who make $50,000 or more, support rose from 36% to 46%.
First, the $50K line represents the median household income in the US, not the bottom limit of “upscale.” Someone in the CNN political unit needs a thesaurus (and an editor). If anything, it divides the working class from the middle class, if such distinctions can even be made any more, but earning above $50K is hardly enough on its own to make a family “upscale.”
The fact that support went up 10% in this demo while poorer Americans didn’t budge on their opposition tells me that the ObamaCare system isn’t getting the poorer sector access to health insurance in the way promised by Barack Obama. Assuming that the 10% jump in the higher income scale isn’t a margin-of-error artifact itself within the smaller sample, it might be that this demo relies more on employer-based insurance, which hasn’t suffered through the same kinds of disruption as the individual markets have.
Either way, this isn’t a “rebound,” not overall. It’s the same results we’ve been seeing for months, and with the deadline for compliance fast approaching, Americans are certainly not getting more excited by the prospect of government-run insurance markets.