At Pajamas Media, we’ve gotten our hands on a national CrossTarget poll regarding ObamaCare. CrossTarget is an Alexandria, VA, survey research firm that conducts polling for Pajamas Media, among others. The survey asked a little over 1,400 likely voters a series of questions about their political affiliation; national right direction/wrong direction; and ObamaCare, which has been the law of the land since the Democrats pushed it and President Obama signed it back in March 2010. Its margin of error is 2.6%. It was conducted Nov. 30 through Dec. 1, 2010.
To give you some sense of its sampling, Question 3 asks, Do you consider yourself a Democrat, a Republican or something else?
1. Democratic 37%
2. Republican 37%
3. Something else 26%
Question 4 is the first indication of bad news for President Obama, asking: Generally speaking, would you say things in this country are heading in the right direction or in the wrong direction?
1. Right Direction 27.7%
2. Wrong Direction 65.1%
3. No Opinion 7.2%
There’s no better news in Question 5, which asks: How would you rate the job Barack Obama has been doing as President… do you strongly approve, somewhat approve, somewhat disapprove, or strongly disapprove of the job President Obama has been doing?
1. Strongly approve 19.7%
2. Somewhat approve 27.9%
3. Somewhat disapprove 14%
4. Strongly disapprove 37%
5. Undecided 1.3%
Strongly disapprove at 37? Us rabid Texans can’t account for all of that.
The survey gets really interesting in the ObamaCare questions. Questions 7 and 8 were the last two questions, both dealing with the subject. Question 7 asks: Will the health care plan passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama be good for the country or bad for the country?
1. Good 36.5%
2. Bad 53.6%
3. No Impact 4.1%
4. Unsure 5.8%
And Question 8 deals with a specific section of ObamaCare, the Independent Payment Advisory Board. The IPAB was created by ObamaCare, and is:
[A] 15 member independent panel, to be appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate — [and] is now charged with enforcing an upper limit on annual Medicare spending growth.
It’s very limited in its options:
To hit its budgetary targets, the IPAB is strictly limited in what it can recommend and implement. It can’t change cost-sharing for covered Medicare services. Indeed, it can’t change the nature of the Medicare entitlement at all, or any aspect of the beneficiary’s relationship to the program. The only thing it can do is cut Medicare payment rates for those providing services to the beneficiaries.
The IPAB has been in the news lately, as doctors and patients learn what it does. It inserts a government panel into medical decision-making.
Imagine visiting your doctor and, after considering your options, you walk out with a prescription that effectively manages your illness, allowing you to lead a healthy, productive life. Now imagine being told the medicine isn’t covered because your plan’s “payment advisory board” decided it is too expensive.
No need to imagine.
The recent federal health care reform bill creates the “Independent Payment Advisory Board,” whose job is to determine which medicines to cover and which are too expensive. This panel consists of 15 presidential appointees. Starting in 2014, the advisory board will make sure Medicare meets preset spending targets each year. Those on Medicaid, those who rely on the social safety net, could find their doctors being second-guessed by accountants who don’t know what is best for the patient.
You think your HMO is run by cheapskates? Wait until they’re replaced by government bureaucrats.
So keeping that in mind, here’s Question 8 of the survey:
Established under the new health care law is the Independent Payment Advisory board. It allows fifteen unelected government officials to decide what medicines will be covered under Medicare. Critics say this board will lead to government rationing of health care for seniors. Proponents say this board is vital to controlling national health care cost. Do you support or oppose this provision of the national health care law?
1. Support 25.1%
2. Oppose 64%
3. Undecided 10.9%
Nancy Pelosi infamously said that we would have to pass ObamaCare to find out what’s in it. The Democrats passed it, and the American people are finding out what’s in it. And they don’t like it at all.
For a president whose economic policies are already proven failures, who just lost the midterms, and who just lost a high-stakes tax cut debate, poll numbers like these in the CrossTarget survey are devastating.