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by Jim Patterson | Posted on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 — 3:05 PM
A new poll from Vanderbilt University shows that Tennessee voters prefer that the state run the online health care exchange required by the federal Affordable Health Care Act, with Republicans more adamant about the issue than voters as a whole.
That sentiment reflected by the Vanderbilt Poll conflicts with the actions of Republican Gov. Bill Haslam. He informed the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Dec. 10 that Tennessee is declining to create and run the exchange, an online marketplace where state residents can shop for health coverage. That means the federal government will step in and do it.
“If a health care exchange must be created, the voters of Tennessee place more trust in the state than the federal government to do it,” said John Geer, Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of Political Science and co-director of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt. “And Republicans are even more trusting of the state to run the health care exchange than Democrats. That may be a surprise to some, but it makes sense since Republicans have long had more faith in state governments than Democrats.”
The online exchange question was one of more than 45 asked of 829 registered voters using landlines and cell phones from Nov. 27 to Dec. 9 by the Vanderbilt Poll. Among all Tennesseans, 53 percent wanted the state to run the exchange and just 33 percent wanted the federal government to do so. Seventy-three percent of Republicans wanted the state to run the health care exchange, compared with 31 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of independents.
The poll, conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, has a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.
Voters were also asked about a wide variety of other issues likely to impact the legislature during its next session, which begins in January. The database of findings will be available online at the website of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt.
“Elections can only reveal which candidates voters prefer,” said Josh Clinton, associate professor of political scienceand co-director of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt. “The Vanderbilt Poll gives us a unique opportunity to explore what the voters think about the many important issues that confront our state and country. The poll offers extraordinary insights into what voters think and care about.”
Among the findings:
The Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt aims to foster an engaging intellectual environment to explore how political institutions shape political debate, ameliorate conflicts and influence public policy.
(N = 829; Margin of Error +/- 4.3%)
41a. Allow the tax cuts passed in 2001 and 2003 to expire for families earning over $250,000 per year.
41b. Reduce the value of itemized tax deductions, such as for child care and mortgages, for families earning over $250,000 per year.
41c. Raise the eligibility age for Medicare from 65 to 67 years old.
41d. Place strict limits on how much money Washington will spend on Medicaid and Medicare.
41e. Freeze spending on non-defense domestic programs such as education, parks, and housing through the year 2019.
About how many years have you lived in Tennessee? (IF LIVED IN TN OFF-AND-ON, READ: Please think about the total time you have lived in Tennessee.)
Are you, yourself, of Hispanic or Latino origin or descent, such as Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, or some other Latin American background?
What is your race? Are you white, black, Asian, or some other race?
Generally speaking, do you usually think of yourself as a
IDEO1. We hear a lot of talk these days about conservatives and liberals. How would you generally describe your views on most political matters? Are you
IDEO2. We hear a lot of talk these days about conservatives and progressives. How would you generally describe your views on most political matters? Are you
What is the highest level of school you have completed or the highest degree you have received?
How often do you attend church, mosque, synagogue or other place of worship? Do you attend
Would you call yourself a born-again Christian – that is, have you personally had a conversion experience related to Jesus Christ?
Before taxes, was your total household income in 2011?
For more information, see the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions website.
Jim Patterson, (615) 322-NEWS
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