Yesterday I blogged about a new health care plan from Oregon senator Ron Wyden. He’s helping push along the universal health care trend by proving that coverage for all is economically feasible and morally necessary.
And it looks like more and more Americans are seeing it that way, too. A new poll from the New York Times says that 84 percent of Americans support expanding a government program to make sure all children have health care — universal health care jr., as it were. Support lags just slightly on the subject of adults. “Sixty percent, including 62 percent of independents and 46 percent of Republicans, said they would be willing to pay more in taxes” to pay for universal health care for every American. “Half said they would be willing to pay as much as $500 a year more.”
Americans are even willing to forego future tax cuts. “Nearly 8 in 10 said they thought it was more important to provide universal access to health insurance than to extend the tax cuts of recent years; 18 percent said the tax cuts were more important.” That 18 percent really loves their money. And I’m assuming they already have some pretty decent health care.
By the way, the fact that Obama, Clinton, and Edwards have all expressed support for universal health care while the Republicans have remained silent has really made this the Democrats’ issue. If you remember, in Bush’s State of the Union he had a fairly reasonable health care proposal. That seems to have fallen on deaf ears.
Only 24 percent said they were satisfied with President Bush’s handling of the health insurance issue, despite his recent initiatives, and 62 percent said the Democrats were more likely to improve the health care system.
Also, it’s worth pointing out that Romney helped state Democrats pass a form of universal health care in Massachusetts, but because of his recent rightward shift that he thinks is necessary to attract the Republican base, he has dropped any mention of the effort from his campaign. Might want to rethink that one, Mitt.