Poll: 60 percent to blame Trump, GOP for ObamaCare problems

Poll: 60 percent to blame Trump, GOP for ObamaCare problems
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Americans will largely blame the Trump administration if fewer people sign up for health insurance this year, according to a new poll.

The Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that more than 60 percent of respondents believe the Trump administration and congressional Republicans are responsible for any and all future problems with ObamaCare.

However, the poll — which sampled 1,201 adults during a five-day period in November — showed a distinct partisan divide.

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Most Democrats said they would blame the Trump administration’s actions if fewer people enroll in marketplace plans this year, while a similar majority of Republicans (73 percent) said it would be because the Obama administration and Democrats in Congress designed a flawed program.

The poll also found that even though a majority of Republican respondents said they trust Trump to do what’s best for the country with regards to health care, the majority of the public don’t trust him.

The Trump administration has essentially taken a hatchet to ObamaCare after failing to pass legislation through Congress repealing the law.

The administration has cut funding for advertising and outreach by 90 percent, raising the odds that fewer people will join the health-care exchanges during the fall enrollment period.

It has slashed funds by 41 percent for outside groups that help reach and enroll likely ObamaCare consumers.

The enrollment period has also been cut in half, and the administration announced plans to take down the Healthcare.gov website for maintenance for hours at a time on several days during the sign-up period, two other steps likely to cut into enrollment.

All of these steps could lead fewer people to sign up for the law, which in turn might lead to higher premiums that could force others off the exchanges.

According to the Kaiser poll, about half of the respondents and the uninsured said they have heard less about open enrollment this year compared to previous years.

Still, nearly 1.5 million people have signed up for ObamaCare since open enrollment began on Nov. 1, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which is slightly more than past years.

Analysts have said early signups are not necessarily indicators of final numbers, and they still expect enrollment to be less this year than in previous years.