Americans have a more positive view of President Obama’s healthcare law despite rounds of technical glitches that set back the new health insurance exchange rollout that began Oct. 1.
While the health reform law was the central point of contention in the battle that led to a 16-day government shutdown, overall the law saw a four-point increase in approval from August, according to new polling data released by Gallup.
The poll, conducted after the shutdown ended and as media attention to healthcare.gov’s glitches increased, shows the law has 45% approval and 50% disapproval today. The disapproval number is largely unchanged from August, while the number of respondents with no opinion has dropped by five points.
Democrats and Independents are largely responsible for the increase in approval of the law. Support from Democrats jumped from 71% to 83%, and from 34% to 39% from Independents. Republicans’ opinions of the law are mostly unchanged, with only 11% approval and 87% disapproval.
Younger Americans are more likely to support the law, while the 50 and over set is more likely to oppose it. Obamacare has a seven-point net positive rating from the under-30 set. The 30 to 49 age group is split 46% to 47%, while 54% of those 50 and over disapprove of the law.
By Gallup pollsters’ own assessment, the law does not appear to be losing support because of the heightened coverage of the website’s technical failings.
“Gallup measured these most recent views as the technical problems with the health insurance exchange website garnered increased media attention,” Gallup Editor-in-Chief Frank Newport said in his assessment. “This suggests that the poor performance of the health exchange sites may not at this point be negatively affecting Americans’ views of the ACA overall.”
Another poll released by Gallup last week found that the percentage of Americans who support delaying or changing the law has dropped from 2011.
This latest polling is further proof that the Republican attempts to delay or defund the health reform law did created more self-inflicted wounds than damage to their target. Nearly two-thirds of Americans disapprove of the job the GOP is doing, according to the latest polling from CNN/ORC.
Meanwhile, according to newly released White House estimates the nation may have lost an additional 120,000 jobs because of the shutdown.