Edited News Release – Though few Americans are paying attention to the pending Supreme Court case over whether the health care law says that people in all states can get financial help to buy health insurance, most say they would want Congress and their state to act to fix potential gaps should the Supreme Court rule in favor of the plaintiffs, the January Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds.
The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments this March in the King v. Burwell case, which addresses whether low- and moderate-income residents in the 37 states relying on the federal healthcare.gov marketplace are eligible for tax credits to purchase insurance, or whether such assistance can only go to residents of states with their own state-run marketplaces. More than 13 million people in potentially affected states could lose subsidies in 2016 depending on the Supreme Court’s ruling.
In an initial reaction to what Congress should do if the Supreme Court limits this financial assistance to residents in states with state-based marketplaces, nearly two thirds of the public (64%) say Congress should pass a law making subsidies available in all states. Majorities of Democrats and independents favor such action, along with 40 percent of Republicans. In comparison, 27 percent would oppose Congress taking such action.
The latest tracking poll was designed and analyzed by public opinion researchers at the Kaiser Family Foundation and was conducted from January 15-21, 2015 among a nationally representative random digit dial telephone sample of 1,503 adults ages 18 and older. Interviews were conducted in English and Spanish by landline (751) and cell phone (752). The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points for the full sample. For results based on other subgroups, the margin of sampling error may be higher. Read full news release.