We’re about a year out from the passage of health-care reform, and what’s most surprising is how stable views of the health-care law have been. The Kaiser Family Foundation’s latest tracking poll includes trend lines running back to passage, and the difference between the bill’s numbers today and the bill’s numbers a year ago is well within the margin of error:
Polling on repeal also remains steady, with a slim majority favoring either keeping the bill or expanding it, and a 39 percent minority favoring either repealing it without a replacement or repealing it and replacing it with a Republican-backed alternative:
Finally, President Obama’s waiver program is quite popular, and the Republican objections to it, according to this survey, aren’t. Two-thirds favor the program in its current form, but two-thirds oppose it if Republicans modify it to allow states to offer “more limited insurance to fewer people”:
Taken together, these polls help explain why health-care reform remains so bitterly contested a year after passage: A slim plurality of Americans have an unfavorable view of the law, which gives Republicans support in their efforts to challenge it, but a majority of Americans oppose efforts to repeal or water down the law, which gives Democrats confidence in their efforts to defend it.