A recent poll has shown that the American Health Care Act (AHCA) is basically as unpopular as Donald Trump himself.
There is new evidence to show that every single state opposes the AHCA, with most states polling at a third or less of the voters saying that they support the bill. Even in one very red state, less than half of people support Donald Trump’s health care plan.
Trump’s approval ratings continue to be embarrassingly low and now it looks like his biggest project is also failing. Trump’s biggest campaign progress was to repeal and replace Obamacare, but that certainly does not seem as easy as Trump thought it might be.
It’s no secret that the American Health Care Act is unpopular. In recent national polls, only about 29 percent of Americans support the bill. It is the most unpopular piece of major legislation Congress has considered in decades — even more unloved than TARP (“the bailout”), and much more unpopular than the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.
Will Republican senators vote yes on a bill this unpopular? To hang on to their jobs, senators have to keep only voters in their own states happy, not the whole nation. Perhaps red-state senators, or even some senators in swing states, might think their states are friendlier to the bill than the nation as a whole.
Our research indicates that is not the case. To get a sense of support by state, we combined recent polls to estimate support for the A.H.C.A. in every senator’s home state. Our estimates indicate that not one state favors it.
For example, even in the most supportive state, deep-red Oklahoma, we estimate that only about 38 percent of voters appear to support the law versus 45 percent who oppose. (Another 17 percent of Oklahomans say they have no opinion.) Across all the states that voted for President Trump last year, we estimate that support for the A.H.C.A. is rarely over 35 percent. A majority of Republican senators currently represent states where less than a third of the public supports the A.H.C.A. By comparison, President Trump received 33 percent of the vote in Massachusetts.
If the Republicans want their bill to pass the Senate, they are going to need more people to support it. If Senators vote yes on the bill as it is, the state they represent could feel betrayed, which could jeopardize their chances for re-election.
They really need to figure out their messy health care!