Americans are showing an increased interest in the Affordable Care Act, despite a flawed rollout of its federal exchange website, Healthcare.gov, according to a new poll by Ipsos/Reuters.
From a poll of nearly 12,000 people in October, Ipsos/Reuters found that 47.1% of respondents viewed the new health care law favorably, compared to 43.8% in September. The trend is even more positive among the uninsured-- 44% now support the law, compared to 36.8% in September.
The growing popularity of Obamacare is a good sign for those who feared that the botched rollout of Healthcare.gov could endanger the federal exchange's overall viability. The White House has acknowledged the need for a high number of enrollees--particularly healthy young people--to keep the costs of premiums low for all.
The Congressional Budget Office estimated in May that 7 million people would sign up for the insurances exchanges in 2014. While that number may prove high, thanks to Healthcare.gov's problems, the interest seems to be moving in a positive direction.
"The launch of the exchanges, that's the first real-world event for a lot of people," Chris Jackson, an Ipsos pollster, said Wednesday. "There's been this sense that once people got familiar with it, public opinion would start to move in its direction."
In states that have implemented their own exchanges, support for the law is still higher. The poll found that a majority of respondents from those 14 states view Obamacare favorably. And about 42% of the uninsured in those states said they are "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to buy insurance through the state-run exchanges.
In the 36 remaining states still operating under Healthcare.gov, only four in ten view the law favorably.