The release of the poll comes a day after the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Healthcare Act as constitutional
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Read the rest of Slate’s coverage on the Supreme Court upholding the Affordable Care Act.
UPDATE: Americans might not find health care to be the top problem facing the U.S. right now, but we sure are a house divided on it.
According to a USA Today/Gallup poll released Friday, Americans are split on the Supreme Court’s Thursday decision to uphold the Affordable Healthcare Act of 2010 with a slim majority on the side of repealing.
Overall trends are unsurprising; women, minorities, single people, young adults, and the rich are likelier to support the decision, with men, whites, married people, those over 30, and the poor likelier to lean against it. More than four in five Republicans polled disagreed with the court’s ruling, while almost four in five Democrats agreed with it. Independents were divided on the issue.
In regards to Congress’s next steps, 31 percent responded that the entire law should be repealed and 21 percent said part or parts of it should be. On the inverse side, 25 percent wanted Congress to expand health care even further and only 13 percent said no further action needed to be taken.
Most participants in the poll felt that politics played too great a role in the decision. Four in five voters said they would consider candidates’ views on the issue come November elections.
Obama announced after the decision that he will push forward with full implementation of the law, while GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney plans to seek repeal if elected. House Republicans have scheduled a repeal vote for July 11.
10:08 a.m.: Don't believe the hype: Americans don't think health care is a top issue. Kind of.
All the media attention paid to the Supreme Court decision on health care reform law in June only prompted 6 percent of Americans to cite health care as the most important problem facing the United States, a Gallup poll shows Friday, based on responses collected before Thursday's ruling. This is a departure from the months in which the Affordable Care Act of 2010 publicly trucked through Congress.
Health care peaked as a top issue in August and September of 2009, when Democrats were pushing to get President Barack Obama’s health care law through, with 26 percent listing it as the most important problem the country faced. But since the reform law's passage in March 2010, concerns over the economy, jobs, the deficit, and problems in government have become more important issues for Americans. The number of respondents citing the issue as the most important problem has remained in the single digits since February 2011.
Usually, health care's presence in public debate prompts more Americans to cite it as a top concern. The 2009 upswing is comparable to another one between September 1993 and August 1994, when President Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Clinton were planning and hoping to pass a health care reform plan, Gallup notes.
But despite this June bucking the trend, it seems that many Americans will rank the cost of health care important when reminded of it. For example, 84 percent rated the issue as “extremely important” or “very important” when given a list of economic issues to rank by importance, including health care, in a separate Gallup poll this May.