Submitted By Todd on September 14th at 6:48pm
Our new ABC News/Washington Post poll out this morning shows that the President’s joint session speech may have stopped his summer slide, but it doesn’t appear to have been the “game-changer” Democrats were hoping for.I would have expected Obama to get a pleasing bump out of the speech, but here's where I think the trouble is. While the audience was large, upwards of 32 million tuned in, only 37% of them were independents, the group most likely to be in play for the President.
Bottom line: right now, voters are almost exactly where they were before the speech.Steph asks if the game changer will be dropping the public option, as the poll indicates this shifts ObamaCare from a loser to a winner for voters.
Big question II: is dropping the public option the game-changer? Olympia Snowe says it’s the only way to get a bill through the Senate, and our poll shows a significant shift in support: from 46-48 to 50-42.Which makes me wonder, for the first time in several days, whether the Public Option was offered with the full knowledge that it would be dropped eventually - the purpose being to get liberals on board before caving under conservative pressure, leading to an energized base. On the other hand, a fight over the Public Option that conservatives would be allowed to win could take the air out of attempts to stop the watered down version of the bill, giving Democrats a health care victory they might not have been able to win otherwise.
Here are the poll details from ABC - Obama's number is the first one in each case.
Split on Obama's handling of health care: 48-48 (46-50 August 17) Support Obama's health care reforms: 46-48 (45-50 August 17) President Obama's job approval is at 54 (57 August 17) Deficit: 65% think health care reform will make it worse Medicare: 56% of seniors think it will weaken Medicare On the crucial "what's in it for me?" question, twice as many Americans (32-16) think it will make their own care worse, twice as many (40-20) think it will increase their costs, and more than three times as many (37-11) think it will hurt their coverage.