After years of steady but stable support for the federal health reform known as the Affordable Care Act, California voters strengthened their embrace of the new law after it was implemented this year, according to a poll released this week by the Field Research Corp.
The survey of 1,535 California voters showed support for the law growing to 56 percent to 35 percent. Backing for the law had hovered between 52 percent and 54 percent since it was enacted in 2010.
The biggest change occurred at the extremes, with more voters strongly in support and fewer voters strongly opposed to the law.
Another change of note: Republicans, while still strongly opposed overall, have begun to embrace the program in slightly larger numbers.
Geographically, pockets of growing support emerged in the Central Valley and in Southern California outside of Los Angeles County.
And for the first time, more non-Hispanic white voters support than oppose the law.
Thirty-sic percent of registered voters said they had visited the web site of Covered California, the new agency created to administer the law, and 9 percent of voters said they purchased insurance coverage at the site.
The poll also found overwhelming support for Medi-Cal, the state and federal health program for low-income people. Forty percent of voters say the program is important to them or their families personally, and nearly two-thirds of those surveyed said they considered the program a success. Medi-Cal eligiblity was expanded as part of the Affordable Care Act, and the program now covers nearly a third of all Californians.
To see the full results, go here.
Note: The Field Poll was paid for by The California Wellness Institute, which is also a sponsor of the California Health Report.