Voters Reject Republican War on Health Care, Demand End to Sabotage

Democrats Given a Mandate to Reduce Costs, Increase Protections and Coverage

Washington, DC – In response to the breaking news that Democrats have taken control of the U.S. House of Representatives, Leslie Dach, the founder and chair of Protect our Care, issued the following statement:

“Tonight, Americans rejected the war on health care that has defined the Republican party for almost a decade. Health care propelled Democrats to victory and control of the House. The American people delivered a clear and powerful message. Voters roundly rejected the Trump-GOP agenda of repeal and sabotage. Democrats have a clear mandate to protect our care, starting with lower prescription drug prices and continued protections for people with pre-existing conditions.”

Brad Woodhouse, executive director of Protect Our Care, added:  

“The race for the House was a referendum on the Republican war on health care. You know it, I know it, and the Republican incumbents who shamefully tried to cover up their real record on health care and lost their seats know it. Even bald-face lies couldn’t save the GOP from their indefensible position on health care, which is that we all pay more for coverage — and women, people with preexisting conditions, and older people lose protections they need — while wealthy insurance and drug companies get record tax breaks.”

ADDITIONAL BACKGROUND

HEALTH CARE HAS BEEN THE DRIVING ISSUE OF THE 2018 ELECTION

  • A new Wesleyan Media Project analysis of advertising spending found that Democrats overwhelmingly ran on health care, with health care featured in 57 percent of Democratic advertising;
  • Health care is a top Google search in more than three-quarters of congressional districts;
  • Polling consistently has confirmed that health care is the top issue to voters and that Democrats have an advantage on the issue;
  • Polling also confirms that voters reject the Republican health care agenda; and
  • Republican incumbents have been firmly on the defensive on health care, resorting to outright, pants-on-fire lies about their record.

ELECTION-NIGHT NETWORK EXIT POLLS FOUND HEALTH CARE TO BE THE TOP ISSUE TO VOTERS

NBC News: Health Care Replaces Economy As Most Important Issue For Voters. “Early results from the NBC News Exit Poll indicate that Democrats’ strategic decision to campaign on the issue of health care resonated with voters. When asked which of four issues was the most important facing the country, a 41 percent plurality said health care. [NBC News, 11/6/2018]

CBS: “Health care was mentioned by almost twice as many voters as the next most common issue, immigration.” [CBS News, 11/6/18]

NBC News: By Two-to-one Margin, Health Care The Top Issue For Independent Voters. [Sahil Kapur Twitter, 11/6/18]

AP: Health Care Tops Voters’ Concerns. “Health care was at the forefront of many voters’ minds: 27 percent named it as the most important issue facing the country in this year’s midterm elections. …Those who voted for a Democratic House candidate were more likely to say health care was their top issue, while those who voted for a Republican were more likely to name immigration.” [Associated Press, 11/6/18]

POLLING HAS CONSISTENTLY FOUND OPPOSITION TO REPUBLICAN WAR ON HEALTH CARE

When polled, voters reject main components of the GOP health care agenda and conversely, support policies that ensure greater access to coverage.

Health Care Repeal:

July 2018 – Public Policy Polling Poll Shows Voters Oppose Repeal Of The Affordable Care Act And The Lawsuit That Would Overturn It. By an overwhelming 25 points (59/34), people want Congress to “keep what works and fix what doesn’t” in the ACA, not repeal it. That margin grows to 32 points (62/30) with independents.  64% of voters oppose the Trump administration joining the lawsuit (Texas V. U.S.) which would strike down ACA’s protections of health care for people with pre-existing conditions. Only 19% of voters support joining the lawsuit.

Gutting Protections for Pre-existing Conditions:

August 2018 – Urban Institute Poll Finds Vast Majority Of Public Does Not Support Allowing Insurance Companies To Exclude People With Pre-existing Conditions. The poll found that 81.5 percent of those surveyed did not support letting insurance companies exclude people with pre-existing conditions, such as diabetes or cancer, from coverage.

July 2018 – Kaiser Health Tracking Poll Finds Candidate’s Position On Pre-existing Conditions Is Single Most Important Health Care Campaign Issue For Voters. “The July Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds a candidate’s position on continuing protections for people with pre-existing health conditions is the top health care campaign issue for voters, among a list of issues provided. This issue cuts across voter demographics with most Democratic voters (74 percent), independent voters (64 percent), and voters living in battleground areas (61 percent), as well as half of Republican voters (49 percent) saying a candidate’s position on continued protections for pre-existing health conditions is either the single most important factor or a very important factor in their 2018 vote.”

Junk Plans:

October 2018 – POLITICO/Harvard Poll Finds Junk Plans To Be Opposed By Majority Of Voters, Not Even Backed By Majority Of Republicans. According to the poll, 62 percent of voters oppose short-term plans, including 39 percent of Republicans. Plus, they are not even supported by a majority of Republicans.

August 2018 – Urban Institute Poll Finds Junk Plans To Be Opposed By Vast Majority Of Americans. The survey found that 67.3 percent of those polled did not support shifting healthy people to less comprehensive plans with lower premiums while leaving sick people in more comprehensive plans with higher premiums.

Cutting Medicaid:

March 2018 – Kaiser Health Tracking Poll Finds Majority Of Americans View Medicaid Favorably And Say The Program Is Working Well. “Medicaid continues to be seen favorably by a majority of the public (74 percent) and about half (52 percent) believe the Medicaid program is working well for most low-income people covered by the program.”

March 2018 – Kaiser Health Tracking Poll Confirms That Lifetime Limits On Medicaid Coverage Are Extremely Unpopular. Asked whether Medicaid should be available without a time limit, two-thirds said that Medicaid should be available without a time limit, compared to only 33 percent who said that Medicaid should only be available for a limited amount of time.