Just less than half — 49% — of the U.S. electorate disapproves of how President Barack Obama is handling health care. 44% approve. When Marist last asked this question in August, voters divided. 43% of registered voters approved of Mr. Obama’s handling of health care while 45% did not.
Since that previous poll, opinion remains split along party lines. 68% of Democrats approve of the president’s actions while 80% of Republicans disapprove. Two months ago, 74% of Democrats and 76% of Republicans held these respective views. Little has changed among Independent voters. A majority of this group — 53% — do not like how Mr. Obama is handling the issue. A similar proportion of Independents — 52% — was not satisfied with the president’s handling of health care two months ago.
Majority of Voters Approve of Public Option
The proposed public option in health care reform has come under a great deal of debate. Do Americans think a public option is a good thing or a bad thing? 60% think it would prove beneficial while 27% think it would be detrimental. Similar proportions of registered voters agree.
Not surprisingly, 75% of Democrats believe the option is a good thing, and 12% do not. Looking at Republicans, 40% believe it to be a benefit, and 49% think there’s a better way to go. A majority of Independents — 57% — say a public option would be a good thing. 30% disagree. Interestingly, voters who identify themselves as ideologically conservative divide. 43% are for the public option, and 44% are against it.