Connect with us

3/31: Handling of Health Care Gets “Thumbs-Down” From Majority of Voters


3/31: Handling of Health Care Gets “Thumbs-Down” From Majority of Voters

The White House achieved a major victory by passing health insurance reform.  But, when it comes to American voters’ views toward how the president handles the issue of health care, the reviews are not glowing.

American flag and stethoscope.


Click Here for Complete March 31, 2010 Poll Release and Tables

53% of registered voters nationwide disapprove of how President Barack Obama is managing health care.  41%, on the other hand, approve, and 6% are unsure.  There has been little change on this question since Marist last asked it in December.  At that time, 53% disapproved of the president’s handling of the issue, and 40% approved.  7% were unsure.

“While some voters may be in President Obama’s corner on health care, he has yet to convince a majority of the electorate that his health care initiative was the right thing to do,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

The health care debate in Congress was far from a friendly bipartisan discussion, and the American electorate reflects this divide.  Nearly seven in ten Democrats — 69% — approve of how the president is dealing with health care while 89% of Republicans disapprove of the president’s approach.  As for independents, a majority — 56% — disapprove of how President Obama is handling health care.

Table: Handling of Health Care

Voters Divide About Historic Nature and Constitutionality of Health Care Legislation

48% of the American electorate believe the recently passed health care legislation is a mistake.  However, 45% say it is a milestone.  7% are unsure.

Once again, there is a partisan divide on this question.  74% of Democrats say the bill marks a major point in our nation’s history.  84% of Republicans report the bill’s passage was a blunder.  51% of independents also think the legislation was a mistake.

As to whether voters think the legislation is constitutional, there is also a split decision.  From what they have read or heard, 46% think it is constitutional while 42% say it is unconstitutional.  12% are unsure.

Table: Health Care Bill — Milestone or Mistake?
Table: Constitutionality of Health Care

Health Care: An Image Changer for the President?

While a majority of voters — 53% — say their opinion of the president has not changed in the wake of the passage of health insurance reform, nearly three in ten — 29% — say their view of the president has gotten worse.  Just 18% say it has improved.

Table: Impact of Health Care on Obama’s Image

Marist Poll Methodology

Related Stories:

3/31: Voters Divide Over Obama’s Job Performance

3/31: Voters to Congress, “Watch Your Back!”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. PT

    April 2, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    Thanks for providing these stats. Yeah, I’m one of those who giving it a thumb down. Here’s a nice infograph on the new health care bill that breaks down the yearly changes we’ll see.

  2. Lee Moody

    April 2, 2010 at 12:57 AM

    I t is not moderation to say that founders of this countries biggest fear was a big centralized government. Now we have the federal government taking over one sixth of our economy. Inpersonal bureaucrats who have secure jobs will decide how much healthcare will given to a real person. While congress passed this health care bill, unemployment continues at an unacceptable level.

  3. lee moody

    April 2, 2010 at 12:14 AM

    Why did Jim Matheson wait until last days before his no vote? Simple, he got permission from Pelosi ! Why did congessional members exclude themselves and their families from this wonderfull new law ? It stinks! Why will the tax collecting for this health care system start in 2011, and will really take effect in 2013 ? The democrats will have a new slush fund! How many democrats have a conscience and are able to look in the mirror ? How many more people in the private work force will be out of work ? How many more new government bureaucrats will be hired at the public trough ? Will they really give a hoot ?

  4. FanDaElis

    April 1, 2010 at 4:18 PM

    After the bill was passed I was quite a bit concerned with what happened. The talks about repeal of the law seemed to me a lost argument since any law change would be vetoed by Obama. Of course, only things changed after 2012, if Obama were defeated, could really get into law. And I thouhgt that Obama would be elevated over this HC bill, why? Because of its passage, though, every trick in the political bag was used. I do not know how much people followed the whole thing. From bribes, to overhanded procedures in both chambers. If the GOP handles well the next election cycle (it would have to start by removing the current RNC chairman from his post) exposing all the tricks, briberies and lies used, they will have a chance to have a tremendous turnaround on the current political landscape. We will see. We have to look at the poll numbers above in light of the overall numbers of voters views, the fact that independents disapprove of the bill is a great thing! Right now, I just want November to come to vote!

  5. Pingback: Republican insanity is not all it’s cracked up to be – Washington Post (blog) |

  6. valwayne

    April 1, 2010 at 2:25 PM

    16,500 new IRS agents, a literal army to Enforce Obama and the Democrats corrupt health care bill on the American people. It was hard enough watching the massive corruption and vote buying. The hundreds of billions in corrupt backroom deals, the Lousisana Purchase, the $60 billion union payoff, the Cornhusker Kickback, the Florida Gatoraide, and all the corrupt earmarks that are following after they started hiding the corrupt deals. Obama and the Democrats never seem to mention the 16,500 IRS agents. They also didn’t tell us that they day the bill became law that companies across the U.S. were going to have to start writing down billion in new costs? Utilitiy companies are already telling us that they will pass those costs on in rate hikes. So Obama’s promise that only those making $250K a year or more would be the only ones to pay is already a lie. The poor, the UNEMPLOYED, everybody will soon be paying more when they shop and even when they get their electrib bill. We’ll all soon be paying for Obamacare, even if we don’t know it, until our eyes bleed!!!

  7. alano

    April 1, 2010 at 11:27 AM

    One can easily argue that the individual mandate is unconstitutional.

    In the past Congress has only attempted to regulate activities; never before has Congress attempted to regulate existence. In Wickard v. Filburn, which is the case that marks the Court’s most expansive view of Congress’s power to regualte interstate commerce, the regulation in question had to do with a farmer growing wheat on his own land to be consumed by his own animals. Where as the regulation at issue in Filburn regulated the activity of growing wheat (the farmer could choose to grow it or not), Obamacare’s individual mandate required all living human beings to purchase a certain product – health insurance. It is a regulation not on any activity but on existence as such. If you choose not to drive, you don’t have to buy car insurance. If you choose not to work, you get out of income taxes. Only by killing yourself, though, can you legally avoid Obamacare’s requirement that every breathing person have health insurance.

    I think it’s very much possible that the Court could gut this horrible bill based on the Commerce Clause alone. It would also be nice if the conservative Justices got a change to revive some 19th-Century substantive due process. After all, to the framers and ratifiers, due process would prevent the government from taking this much control over your life unless you’d been properly convicted of some horrible crime. Unfortunately, I don’t think the conservatives will take this route because the liberal justices have long used substantive DP to strike down any state laws banning abortion.

  8. Pingback: The Greenroom » Forum Archive » Health Care Reform: The Battle Is Just Starting

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Featured

To Top