New Statewide Medicaid Poll: What’s the Rush?

Hill MedicaidA statewide survey of 803 active Ohio voters released today by Opportunity Ohio and The Liberty Foundation reveals major concerns about the timing and the potential cost of Governor John Kasich’s ObamaCare Medicaid expansion plan. The survey was conducted on March 3-4 by Dr. David Hill of Hill Research Consultants and has a margin of error of +/-4%.

The rush for a dramatic expansion of Medicaid under ObamaCare in the face of wildly varying cost estimates tops voter worries. Waste, fraud and abuse in the program is a close second. Ohio voters do not think there is a healthcare crisis, so presumably they don’t endorse sweeping changes in healthcare programs and coverage plans. Most are very satisfied with their own healthcare plans.

Only 4% are Medicaid recipients themselves, but 31% see Medicaid as “very important” to themselves or their families. But 43% oppose expansion generally and that jumps to almost 50% when voters are given details of the proposed program expansion, including eligibility levels and the conflicting estimates of the number of new recipients. Almost two–thirds of Republican primary voters are opposed when told the expansion plan details.
“Ohioans, especially Republican primary voters, are telling the legislature to slow it down and get the facts before committing them to a program they believe is riddled with waste and likely to cost them more money. Conservatives clearly think that ceding more power to Washington is bad policy. As my colleague in Florida commented after the legislature rejected Governor Rick Scott’s proposed expansion of Medicaid, governors don’t get the last word on ObamaCare–legislators do.”

Other survey results include:

  • 71% of Democratic primary voters favor expansion while 65% of Republican primary voters oppose expansion;
  • 60% of Republican primary voters see Medicaid as a flawed program;
  • Medicaid enrollment skews heavily toward Democratic identifiers and Democratic primary voters (75%);
  • 60% of Ohioans want to give a new person a chance in the state legislature;
  • 61% of Ohioans disapprove of Governor Kasich’s proposed spending increases;
  • 54% of Ohioans disapprove of Governor Kasich’s proposed tax plan; and
  • 53% of Ohioans say workers shouldn’t have to pay union dues to hold a job.

Click on the links to view the following items: topline results of the survey, Dr. Hill’s presentation, and verbatim comments from active Ohio voters.