Voters Without Health Insurance Split On Congressional Vote

Thirty-five percent (35%) of voters without health insurance say they’ll cast a vote for the Democratic candidate in the upcoming Congressional elections. Thirty-one percent (31%) will vote for a Republican. survey data shows that 14% would vote for a third party candidate, 6% don’t plan to vote, and 15% are undecided.

Just 38% of these voters rate the medical care they receive as good or excellent while 28% say the care they receive is poor. These numbers are far worse than for Americans with health insurance from any source. Not surprisingly, 51% of the uninsured rate our health care system as poor.

Health care and the economy have consistently remained the top issues in Election 2018. Democrats are generally trusted more on health care while Republicans are trusted more on the economy.  Sixty-eight percent (68%) of voters believe it is Very Important to ensure that every American has access to quality health care. Not surprisingly, therefore, 81%  favor providing financial assistance to people who cannot afford health insurance or medical care.

However, despite surface appeal to the loosely defined concept, there is strong voter resistance to a Single-Payer Health Care plan. They expect health care solutions are to come from technology and competition rather than new government policies.

The data on uninsured voters comes from a series of national surveys conducted between August 6 and October 16, 2018. A total of 7,000 Registered Voters were interviewed  by and HarrisX, a polling company specializing in online surveys (see Methodology). The sample included 524 uninsured voters, 321 who buy their insurance through a government Exchange, and 259 who buy their own insurance in some other manner.

Those who buy their insurance through an Exchange favor Democrats for Congress by a 53% to 28% margin. However, those who buy their own insurance in some other manner favor Republicans by a 41% to 37% margin.

People who get their insurance through the exchanges have a relatively positive view of the U.S. health care system–40% rate it as good or excellent while 29% say poor. However, those who buy their own insurance elsewhere are far less satisfied. Just 23% of these voters rate the health care system as good or excellent while 34% say it’s poor.

One key difference may be that the overwhelming majority of those who use an Exchange are receiving heavily subsidized insurance and paying relatively less out of pocket. It would seem reasonable to assume that those who are paying for the full cost of their individual coverage would be less pleased with the health care system.

Republican support among the uninsured may also be connected to the elimination of the individual mandate last December. Data released prior to the repeal of the mandate showed that 15 million Americans would opt out of buying the full-level of coverage required by Obamacare. The Trump Administration has recently issued rules making it possible for such people to buy more affordable and less comprehensive coverage.

Among those who receive health insurance from their employer, Democrats are favored by a 41% to 37% margin on the Generic Congressional Ballot. The numbers are similar for those on Medicare (43% Democrat, 37% Republican). Those on Medicaid strongly favor the Democrats by a 47% to 23% margin. Put it all together and the group most supportive of Democrats are those who buy insurance on the Obamacare Exchanges. Those who are most supportive of Republicans are those who buy insurance on their own.

Given that the survey data was collected over two months, some of the voting intentions may have shifted slightly as the campaign progressed. Additionally, this study makes no effort to measure Likely Voters.

The margin of error for data on uninsured voters is +/- 4.4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. For data on those who buy insurance through the Exchanges, it is +/- 5.6 percentage points. For those who buy insurance on their own, it’s +/-6.2 percentage points.

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Posted in Poll Results

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