Following Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling invalidating the Affordable Care Act, a new Kaiser Family Foundation poll finds that almost half of Americans either believe that the health reform law has been repealed (22 percent) or don’t “know enough to say whether it is still law (26 percent).” Still, a majority want to keep major elements of the law, oppose defunding the measure, and would like to see Congress expand it or keep it as is:
The public’s unfamiliarity with the legal status of ACA is probably the most interesting finding, but it’s also the easiest to explain. The GOP’s hyperbolic campaign against the law (the conflicting votes for repeal in the House and the Senate) is at least partly responsible for the public confusion, but so is Vinson’s ruling itself — he issued a declaratory judgment without an injunction and the federal government continues to implement the law while some states are already sending money back. (It also doesn’t help that the media is much more likely to cover Vinson’s ruling than other district court decisions upholding the law.)
Americans have consistently said they they’re much more interested in jobs and the economy than revisiting the health law and given the general lack of knowledge about civics and all of the other competing priorities that populate daily life, the state of the law (which has not yet kicked in to a large degree) is a back-burner issue.