With the prospect of health care reform less certain after the Massachusetts special election eliminated the Democrat’s supermajority in the U.S. Senate, a new Fox News Poll shows that less than one-quarter of American voters support passage of the legislation currently before Congress (23 percent).
About the same number want Congress to do nothing on health reform this year (23 percent). The largest number -- just under half (47 percent) -- want Congress to start over with a new plan.
Democrats are nearly evenly split between wanting the current legislation to pass (42 percent) and starting over (38 percent). Slight majorities of both Republicans (53 percent) and independents (52 percent) would like Congress to start over on health reform. Republicans are more likely to favor doing nothing (38 percent) than either Democrats (12 percent) or independents (19 percent).
The national telephone poll was conducted for Fox News by Opinion Dynamics Corp. among 900 registered voters from February 2 to February 3. For the total sample, the poll has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
More Americans think Democratic lawmakers were motivated by passing health reform rather than by designing good policy. A majority say lawmakers wrote the current legislation because they were doing whatever it took to pass health reform (57 percent), while only 23 percent say lawmakers believe the legislation before Congress is good policy. This is true of Democrats (43 percent to 39 percent), Republicans (74 percent to 11 percent) and independents (51 percent to 21 percent) alike.
In contrast, more Americans think Republican lawmakers oppose the current legislation because they actually believe it is bad policy (50 percent) than think Republicans are trying to hurt President Obama politically (32 percent).
Tami Buhr is the Director of Field Research at Opinion Dynamics Corporation