CAP en Español
Small CAP Banner

Public Opinion Snapshot: Public Says Keep or Expand Obamacare

  • print icon
  • SHARE:
  • Facebook icon
  • Twitter icon
  • Share on Google+
  • Email icon

With the Supreme Court’s recent decision upholding the constitutionality of Obamacare, conservatives have redoubled their attacks on the law. They say the whole law is so bad that nothing less than full repeal is warranted.

They are hoping that continued public reservations about Obamacare, documented in many polls, will fuel their fight for repeal. But they are overestimating the public’s appetite for outright repeal. In reality, the public’s view of the law is quite complex: Reservations co-exist with sentiment that most of the law’s changes are necessary and perhaps even need to be expanded.

In the latest edition of the Kaiser Health Tracking poll, for example, 53 percent of respondents said Obamacare should either be kept as is (25 percent) or expanded (28 percent) versus 38 percent who thought the law should be either repealed and replaced with a Republican-sponsored alternative (18 percent) or repealed and not replaced (20 percent).

Figure 1

Similarly, in a just-released CNN/ORC poll, 52 percent of respondents said they favored all (9 percent) or most (43 percent) of the provisions in the health care law, compared to 47 percent who said they opposed most (34 percent) or all (13 percent) of the provisions.

Figure 2

This does not sound like a public thirsting for immediate and total repeal of Obamacare. Conservatives would be wise to develop a more nuanced approach to the law to match the public mood.

Ruy Teixeira is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. To learn more about his public opinion analysis, go to the Media and Progressive Values page and the Progressive Studies program page of our website.

To speak with our experts on this topic, please contact:

Print: Liz Bartolomeo (poverty, health care)
202.481.8151 or

Print: Tom Caiazza (foreign policy, energy and environment, LGBT issues, gun-violence prevention)
202.481.7141 or

Print: Allison Preiss (economy, education)
202.478.6331 or

Print: Tanya Arditi (immigration, Progress 2050, race issues, demographics, criminal justice, Legal Progress)
202.741.6258 or

Print: Chelsea Kiene (women's issues,, faith)
202.478.5328 or

Print: Beatriz Lopez (Center for American Progress Action Fund)
202.741.6255 or

Spanish-language and ethnic media: Rafael Medina
202.478.5313 or

TV: Rachel Rosen
202.483.2675 or

Radio: Sally Tucker
202.481.8103 or


This is part of a regular column: Public Opinion Snapshot

For more from the same column, click here