Issues that unite: the repeal of ObamaCare
In another “temperature of the electorate” poll, USA Today/Gallup have a swing state poll out that points to an issue that remains an advantage for Republicans: the repeal of ObamaCare.
The poll sampled the opinions of 1,137 likely voters in 12 swing states, states critical to a win in the upcoming election. The subject was ObamaCare:
In a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll of the nation’s dozen top battleground states, a clear majority of registered voters call the bill’s passage "a bad thing" and support its repeal if a Republican wins the White House in November. Two years after he signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act— and as the Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments about its constitutionality next month — the president has failed to convince most Americans that it was the right thing to do.
You sort of have to root through the story to get an idea of the depth of the swing state voter’s resistance to the law, but it is significant:
Voters in swing states stand overwhelmingly on one side of the debate: Three of four voters, including a majority of Democrats and of liberals, say the law is unconstitutional.
Many try to paint this result as one of poor messaging on the part of the Obama Administration and Democrats. Of course that’s a favorite fallback position – its not the message, it’s how it has been delivered.
In fact, it is the message. The message is “we can mandate whatever we wish and your only choice is to do what you’re told to do.”
Americans, in general, naturally resist such a power grab. And that’s what you see in this poll.
Opposition to the law is eroding Obama’s support among the middle-of-the-road voters both nominees will court this fall. Among independents, 35% say the law makes them less likely to support Obama, more than double the 16% who say it makes them more likely.
The intensity of feeling among potential swing voters also favors opponents. Among independents who lean to the GOP, 54% say they are much less likely to support Obama as a result. Among independents who lean to the Democrats, 18% say they are much more likely to support him.
As we’ve noted any number of times, such as last night’s podcast, it is the “middle of the road” or “independents” are the key to victory. And they find the law very objectionable. It is also an issue likely to motivate these voters (see note about the “intensity of feeling”).
As we noted in last nights podcast, while the GOP is seen to be thrashing about right now, once a nominee is settled upon and the focus turns on Obama and his record, it is issues like this that the GOP must use to defeat him. It resonates (here’s a recent national poll on the subject). If they let the Democrats or the media set the agenda and deflect or redirect the debate to issues of no real importance in this election, but issues which are likely to hurt them among moderate voters, then they stand a chance to lose. If they allow that to happen, shame on them.
Obama finally has a record, and it is not a good one. ObamaCare and its repeal should be front and center of any issue oriented GOP campaign. It is a winner for them.