The Obama administration might have launched a public relations offensive to educate Americans on the Affordable Care Act as it is implemented over the upcoming months, but the American people are anything but optimistic that the law commonly known as "Obamacare" will improve their lives.
A new Gallup poll out Thursday reveals that 42 percent of the public believes the law will actually make things tougher for them and their families. Just 22 percent said that the health care bill would improve their health and family life. And 52 percent of Americans surveyed reported that the law itself is flawed and would drastically cut down the quality of health care citizens received in the long run. That number is higher than a similar Gallup survey last fall, which showed 45 percent disapproved of the law overall.
The health care bill passed in 2009. Health care exchanges, a key piece of the legislation that allows Americans to sign up for private insurance, will be available this fall.
The partisan divide over health care is vast. Only 4 percent of self-identified Republicans believe Obamacare will improve their situation, while 40 percent of Democrats are confident the bill was designed to support their needs.
But not all Democrats are following the president's lead; nearly 20 percent surveyed said they thought the president's plan would inevitably have a negative situation on health care in the U.S., while 84 percent of Republicans believed that would be the case.
While House Republicans have tried to repeal the health care law more than 30 times, Democrats in Congress have stood by it, saying that implementation would illustrate the benefits of the new health care overhaul would be. Already, some small changes – such as greater access to contraception and allowing children to stay on their parents' health insurance until age 26 – have remained central talking points for Democrats looking to raise public opinion on the topic.
Enroll America, a nonprofit group, began its program to educate the country's uninsured and help them learn about how they can gain access to health care this spring and some supporters say as the program in rolled out, more Americans will be happier with their coverage.
For now, however, polling shows Americans are anxiously awaiting the implementation of the health care overhaul.
The poll was conducted June 20-24. More than 2,000 adults across the country were contacted on cell phones and land lines.