Poll Reveals Support for Medicare For All Plummets When People Learn What It Is | NTK Network Poll Reveals Support for Medicare For All Plummets When People Learn What It Is

Poll Reveals Support for Medicare For All Plummets When People Learn What It Is

Americans initially support the general idea of Medicare For All, but when they learn about the potential risks involved, support evaporates.

By NTK Staff | 01.23.2019 @9:19am
Poll Reveals Support for Medicare For All Plummets When People Learn What It Is

A new poll released by the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation found that though Americans initially support the idea of Medicare For All, that support dramatically plummets when those same Americans learn about the potential drawbacks to such a system.

Medicare For All is a government-run health care system that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) brought to prominence during his 2016 presidential campaign against Hillary Clinton. Since that time, several prominent Democrats, including some who are running or expected to run for president in 2020, have publicly backed the proposal. Republicans are nearly uniformly opposed.

According to the poll, Americans generally support the concept of Medicare For All on its face. The poll found that 56 percent of Americans said they support the idea, while 42 percent opposed.

But given a bit more information about the potential pitfalls of such a system, and support for Medicare For All bottoms out:

But if they were told that a government-run system could lead to delays in getting care or higher taxes, support plunged to 26 percent and 37 percent, respectively.

And it turns out those concerns are well founded. State-level versions of Medicare For All have been attempted in states like Sanders’ home state of Vermont and in Colorado. But those single-payer health care systems failed “because of concerns about the tax increases needed to put them in place,” according to a Harvard public health professor.

There doesn’t seem to be much disagreement that a single-payer system would require tax increases, since the government would take over premiums now paid by employers and individuals as it replaces the private health insurance industry. The question is how much.

Several independent studies have estimated that government spending on health care would increase dramatically, in the range of about $25 trillion to $35 trillion or more over a 10-year period.

Other estimates peg the costs as much lower, but it’s impossible to know for sure.

In the meantime, Democratic presidential candidates will continue to fiercely debate this issue and attempt to figure out a way to make the proposal palatable to the American public. So far, those attempts have not worked.

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