More and more, Californians like the ACA

Californians are embracing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) ((P.L. 111-148) at an increasing rate, according to a field poll of California voters conducted in June and July of this year. Sixty-two percent of respondents say they support the law, up from 56% in 2014, and support by majorities of voters was found in all major regions of the state, among all races and ethnicities, and among all age groups. The percentage of California voters who supported the law had remained fairly stable in the first four years following its passage, ranging from 52% to 54%.

Approval of state’s implementation. California’s success in putting the ACA’s provisions into practice received favorable ratings from many of those surveyed (68%), and that approval crossed party lines. There has also been an increase in the number of respondents who think that California was successful in achieving such ACA objectives as encouraging more previously uninsured residents to get health coverage, providing consumers with more insurance choices, obtaining federal funds necessary for implementation, establishing a one-stop shop for health insurance online, and providing insurance buyers with improved consumer protections. Only 42% of voters surveyed felt that California has met the objective of limiting health insurance companies’ rate increases, however.

King v. Burwell. With regard to the U.S. Supreme Court’s King v. Burwell ruling, in which the Court held that low and moderate income Americans who buy health insurance through a federal government insurance exchange should be able to receive financial assistance similar to the assistance received by those who buy insurance through state exchanges, 74% said they agreed with the ruling, and 22% disagreed. Those in agreement included 86% of surveyed Democrats and 51% of surveyed Republicans.

A two-to-one majority of voters in the survey agreed that, because of the ruling, the major provisions of the law are here to stay. It should also be noted that two in three likely California voters responded that a candidate’s position on the ACA would be very important to them in elections for both the President and for Congress.

Covered California. California’s health exchange website, Covered California, was well known to the respondents to the survey, and about half of them (48%) under age 65 said they had visited the website, which represented an increase from last year’s 36%. Fifty-five percent of those who visited the website said they were satisfied with their experience, and 40% were dissatisfied.


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