The Fading Momentum for Obamacare Repeal

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Nov. 13 2012 10:19 AM

The Fading Momentum for Obamacare Repeal

In the 2010 midterms, the verdict was clear: Voters wanted to repeal Obamacare. According to the exit polls, half of the electorate that installed Speaker of the House John Boehner wanted full repeal. Only 19 percent wanted to expand it.

In 2012, with an electorate more slanted toward the Democrats, we saw a sea change. Only 25 percent of voters wanted Obamacare "repealed completely." Twenty-six percent of them wanted to expand it. Twenty-four percent wanted the law "repealed in part," which... is actually a lousy question, as the Medicaid portion has already been dialed back by the Supreme Court. But overall, the hard "repeal" position advocated by the GOP and Mitt Romney was, for the first time, less popular than the "tweak" position. I'm surprised that Republicans aren't more depressed, really, because between the Supreme Court decision and the Obama re-election, they've lost their best chances of ever ridding America of the Euro-socialist Obamacare scourge.

And it's keeping up like that. The new Kaiser poll has only 33 percent of voters advocating repeal. That's the lowest the number has been since the law was passed.

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UPDATE: The amazing Sarah Kliff has more on the Kaiser poll.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.