This column has long been arguing that the health-care ideas Congress is considering are so bad that inaction would be vastly preferable. Fox News.com reports that a majority of Americans in a new poll now agree with us:
While 41 percent of Americans want Congress to pass major health care reform legislation this year, a 54 percent majority says they would rather Congress "do nothing on health care for now," up from 48 percent who felt that way in July.
The poll finds that 57% of Americans oppose "the health care reform legislation being considered right now."
To be sure, this is Fox, which according to the White House is not a legitimate news organization because it reports the news even when it casts President Obama in a bad light. But a CNN poll found that an even bigger majority--61%--oppose the Senate's version of the ObamaCare bill.
The CNN.com story on the poll ignores this, focusing instead on the finding that Democrats have only a 1% lead, 40% to 39%, when survey participants are asked which party's control of Congress would make the country better off. This is the slenderest advantage for the Dems since July 2002.
A third survey, from Public Policy Polling, found that 52% of registered voters oppose "President Obama's health care plan." On the firm's blog, PPP's Tom Jensen reports on another finding:
Perhaps the greatest measure of Obama's declining support is that just 50% of voters now say they prefer having him as President to George W. Bush, with 44% saying they'd rather have his predecessor.
Given the horrendous approval ratings Bush showed during his final term that's somewhat of a surprise and an indication that voters are increasingly placing the blame on Obama for the country's difficulties instead of giving him space because of the tough situation he inherited. The closeness in the Obama/Bush numbers also has implications for the 2010 elections.
Using the Bush card may not be particularly effective for Democrats anymore, which is good news generally for Republicans and especially ones like [Ohio Senate candidate] Rob Portman who are running for office and have close ties to the former President.