March 12, 2020 | Updates

Voters Reject One-Size-Fits-All Government Health Care

WASHINGTON – As the presidential campaign continues to develop, health care remains at the top of voters’ minds.  But as the unaffordable costs and negative consequences of new government-controlled health insurance systems become clearer, more Americans are urging candidates to focus on building on what’s working and fixing what isn’t – not starting over with a one-size-fits-all system controlled by politicians.  

In Michigan, “the idea of giving up health care plans they negotiated for in favor of a government-controlled system that guarantees coverage for everyone” proved highly controversial among members of labor unions, The Detroit News reports“[P]rivate health insurance coverage is something unions have fought for and don’t want to give up, according to those who work with businesses in the state,” Forbes adds

Recent polls in the swing states of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin from Third Way “reveal that voters are deeply skeptical about Medicare for All” and “think Medicare for All will lead to middle-class tax hikes and lower quality of care.”  This tracks closely with another recent poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Cook Political Report finds that nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of swing voters in the states of Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin rate Medicare for All as a “bad idea.”  In fact, The Wall Street Journal reported recently that in Michigan, “supporters of a single-payer health care system are finding a tough audience.”

And in Florida, Medicare for All is “sparking controversy among retirees in the all-important battleground state,” Fox Business reports

  • Susan Shovers, Retiree: “I get scared at the thought of [Medicare for All] because statistics show it’s much too expensive.”
  • Alan Shovers, Retiree: “Somebody is going to have to pay the price, could be the seniors.”
  • Miette Burnstein, Retiree: “When you talk about Medicare you don’t want all the old people paying for all the young people who don’t need it … We want all the Medicare for us because we’re old.  And we need it”

The just-released third edition of Voter Vitals – a tracking poll conducted nationwide and in 2020 battleground states by Locust Street Group for the Partnership for America’s Health Care Future – finds that a “supermajority of voters prefer to build on and improve our current health care system rather than replace it with something new.”  Meanwhile, a recent poll from Morning Consult and the Bipartisan Policy Center finds that “[i]mproving the current health-care system received the most support among voters, far more than repealing Obamacare or adopting ‘Medicare-for-All,’” Bloomberg reports.

And a Gallup poll finds that “[s]ome 71% of Americans rate their private coverage as ‘excellent’ or ‘good,’” CNN reports“Americans continue to prefer a healthcare system based on private insurance (54%) over a government-run healthcare system (42),” according to Gallup’s annual Health and Healthcare poll, which finds that a government-controlled health insurance system “remains the minority view in the U.S.  This could create a challenge in a general election campaign for a Democratic presidential nominee advocating a ‘Medicare for All’ or other healthcare plan that would greatly expand the government’s role in the healthcare system.”


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