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Exclusive: Poll shows Affordable Care Act challenge a liability for McConnell at home

Exclusive: Poll shows Affordable Care Act challenge a liability for McConnell at home

A new poll of voters shows that a Trump administration-backed effort to strike down the Affordable Care Act is a political liability for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellFeinstein’s hug of Lindsey Graham sparks outrage on the left Overnight Health Care: Georgia gets Trump approval for Medicaid work requirements, partial expansion | McConnell shoots down .8 trillion coronavirus deal Pelosi: Mnuchin says Trump will lobby McConnell on big COVID-19 deal MORE (R-Ky.) in Kentucky.

The poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling on behalf of Protect Our Care, a Democratic-allied group, shows that 49 percent of Kentucky voters oppose a lawsuit by 18 Republican-led states against the Affordable Care Act for which the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on Nov. 10.

When voters are informed that striking down the law would eliminate protections that stop insurance companies from denying coverage or raising costs for people with pre-existing medical conditions, 60 percent of Kentucky voters say it’s a “major concern.”

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When informed that striking down the law would result in more than 20 million Americans losing health care coverage, 58 percent of voters say it’s a “major concern.”

When informed that McConnell “favors striking down the Affordable Care Act without any replacement,” 48 percent of voters say they’re less likely to support him while 21 percent say they are more likely to support his reelection.

The poll surveyed 930 voters in McConnell’s home state from Oct. 14 to Oct. 15.

McConnell has pushed back against Democratic claims that his support for Judge Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettSix takeaways from Trump and Biden’s dueling town halls Biden draws sharp contrast with Trump in low-key town hall Trump fields questions on coronavirus, conspiracy theories in combative town hall MORE, President TrumpDonald John TrumpFeds investigating if alleged Hunter Biden emails connected to foreign intelligence operation: report Six takeaways from Trump and Biden’s dueling town halls Biden draws sharp contrast with Trump in low-key town hall MORE’s nominee to the Supreme Court, represents a serious threat to the Affordable Care Act.

McConnell last month said “one of the pre-selected scare tactics is that Judge Barrett is out to steal Americans’ health care coverage.”

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“On this occasion, their entire argument seems to come down to a technical analysis Judge Barrett put forward in a four-year-old academic paper about one part of ObamaCare — which Congress has already zeroed out in the meantime,” he said, referring to the tax penalty associated with the individual mandate.

McConnell in the past called for repealing ObamaCare “root and branch” and put legislation on the Senate floor in 2017 to repeal major elements of the law.

Brad Woodhouse, the executive director of Protect Our Care, said the poll shows the prominence Barrett’s confirmation hearing gave to the GOP-led legal effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act is a problem for Senate Republican candidates.

“If the voters of Kentucky are against the lawsuit, if the voters of Kentucky are more favorable than not to the Affordable Care Act … imagine what that means when Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerBiden hints at opposition to court packing as pressure builds Senate Republicans scramble to put Trump at arm’s length The Hill’s 12:30 Report: Dems ruffle feathers with POTUS fitness bill MORE eventually sees this poll or Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyThe Hill’s Campaign Report: Trump, Biden brace for dueling town halls Kelly raises .7 million in third quarter for Arizona Senate bid Biden, Kelly maintain leads in Arizona MORE sees this poll,” Woodhouse said, referring to Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.), who are trailing in the polls to their Democratic opponents.

“The entire Supreme Court nomination became about the future about the Affordable Care Act,” he added.

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Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSenate GOP’s campaign arm releases first ad targeting Bollier in Kansas Intercept Chief: Democrats’ attention to Affordable Care Act in Barrett hearings part of larger election strategy Is Trump a better choice for Jewish voters than Biden? MORE (D-N.Y.) made Barrett’s possible ruling on the law a primary point of attack.

Barrett, however, raised the possibility at the hearing that she may not rule to strike down the entire Affordable Care Act, telling Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamPoll: Graham leads Harrison by 6 points in SC Senate race Feinstein’s hug of Lindsey Graham sparks outrage on the left Progressive group: Feinstein must step down as top Democrat on Judiciary panel MORE (R-S.C.) that the doctrine of severability is well-established, which would allow for only the individual mandate to be ruled unconstitutional while keeping the rest of the law intact.

The poll also asked voters about McConnell’s opposition to the $3.4 trillion HEROES Act that Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi: Mnuchin says Trump will lobby McConnell on big COVID-19 deal On The Money: McConnell shoots down .8 trillion coronavirus deal, breaking with Trump | Pelosi cites progress on testing provisions | Jobless claims spike to 898K United CEO: Business demand for air travel won’t return until 2024 MORE (D-Calif.) and House Democrats passed in May.

When described as a package that provides another round of direct cash payments to Americans, extended unemployment benefits through the end of January, hazard pay for front-line workers and expanded virus testing, Kentucky voters expressed support for it.

The question, however, did not include the $3.4 trillion price tag for the bill or other items that McConnell has highlighted, such as a provision allowing undocumented immigrants to receive new rebates and language that would weaken state voter ID requirements.

Forty-six percent of voters said they were less likely to support McConnell when they were told he refused to bring the House bill up for a vote in the Senate. Twenty-two percent of voters said they were more likely to vote for him as a result. 

Published at Fri, 16 Oct 2020 17:25:58 +0000