(Week of 6/30/2012) The Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act appears to have prompted a small increase in the percentage of Americans who want the law to be repealed. In last week’s poll, 37% of respondents indicated they supported the law’s repeal. This week, that percentage has risen to 42%. Conversely, the percentage of Americans who want to see the law expanded declined from 29% to 25%.
Support for the idea of universal health care has also declined somewhat between this week and last week. Last week, 41% of respondents indicated they believed that it is the responsibility of the federal government to see to it that everyone has health insurance; this week, that percentage dropped to 34%.
The decision that the ACA was constitutional surprised many on the left as well as on the right. Nearly four in ten respondents in this week’s poll say they were surprised by the decision, an emotion felt by a similar percentage of Republicans, who generally opposed the law, and Democrats, who mostly supported it.
In fact, more Americans claimed to have felt surprise than to have felt any other emotion after the decision. Disappointment was the second most widely felt emotion, followed by optimism and frustration. Relief, anger, pessimism, and excitement were less widely felt.
Not surprisingly, GOP and Democratic partisans felt differently: majorities of Republicans were disappointed and frustrated, and nearly half were angry. Large percentages of Democrats, on the other hand, felt optimistic and relieved.
Photo source: Press Association