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Poll: Half of Americans find health care harder to afford this year

Poll: Half of Americans find health care harder to afford this year
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Nearly half of respondents in a new poll said they are now finding it more difficult to afford health care than they were a year ago, according to a poll released Thursday. 

The Navigator poll found 49 percent of respondents said it’s more difficult to afford prescription drugs, insurance premiums and doctor visits compared to last year. Additionally, 78 percent of those surveyed said they believe the government should be doing more to make health care more affordable. 

The poll, produced by Navigator Research, a Democratic messaging firm, show respondents split mostly along party lines. Among Democrats, 61 percent of those polled said it’s more difficult than last year to afford "things in general." The poll question did not list any specific categories of spending, like health care, gas prices, groceries and phone bills, when asking the question.

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Among Republicans, 29 percent said it’s more difficult to afford "things in general," compared to 43 percent who believe it’s easier, according to the Navigator poll.

However, health care seems to transcend party lines. Fifty-four percent of Democrats said health care specifically is more difficult to afford than last year, and 46 percent of Republicans said the same thing. 

Overall, respondents trust Democrats more to address the issue of rising health-care costs. The poll found 49 percent of respondents believe Democrats would best address the issue in Congress, compared to 35 percent who place more trust in Republicans.

Democrats have focused on health care as a key tenet of their platform heading into the November midterms.

Republicans, meanwhile, are expected to present a series of bills for votes in the House next week that Republicans argue will help lower premiums and other health-care costs.

Navigator Research surveyed roughly 1,000 voters between July 6 – 9. It did not provide a margin of error for its findings.