JONATHAN CHAIT JANUARY 12, 2010
I've been saying for a while now that most of the approve/disapprove polls on health care convey a highly misleading impression, since they combine opposition from the left and right:
Many people think the right has won the health care debate, since polls show that narrow but stable majorities of Americans disapprove of Obama’s health care plan. The problem with this gauge is that it lumps together Obama’s critics from the right with those from the left.
For instance, one recent poll asks whether the Democratic plans create too much government involvement, the right amount, or not enough. Too much gets 42 percent, the right amount 34 percent, and not enough 21 percent. Another question shows that only 28 percent of Americans think the bill goes too far in expanding coverage to the uninsured, 33 percent say it expands coverage the right amount, and 35 percent say it does not go far enough. In both cases, majorities of the public either support Obama’s approach or wish it went further.
Greg Sargent has another example today: