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Trump’s Attack on Obamacare May Not Be a 2024 Winner, Poll Suggests

President Joe Biden could get a re-election boost from Donald Trump’s new threat to Obamacare, a new poll suggests. Most voters trust Democrats over Republicans to handle the future of the Affordable Care Act. And most Republican voters don’t see the ACA as an important issue, according to the survey by the nonpartisan health research organization KFF.

The poll was conducted before a recent comment by Trump that he’s considering “alternatives” to the 2010 health care law that’s long been targeted by Republican politicians.

Drug costs lowered, but no credit for Biden

But, in a worrying finding for the president, the survey released Friday also shows most adults aren’t aware of steps Democrats have taken to reduce prescription drug costs for seniors, an issue Biden is hoping will help return him to the White House next year.

Only about one-third of the public knows that one of Biden’s signature acheivements – the Inflation Reduction Act – requires Medicare to negotiate prices for some prescription drugs. Even fewer are aware that monthly insulin costs for Medicare enrollees have been capped at $35 and total out-of-pockets costs for drugs have been limited, the survey found.

“It suggests that more work could be done to educate the public, and seniors in particular, about benefits that are coming their way,” Tricia Neuman, a senior vice president at KFF, told USA TODAY.

Neuman, who leads KFF’s Medicare program, said she was surprised by the low awareness for Biden’s changes to Medicare, even among seniors.

‘Something great for me’

While the monthly cap on insulin costs has gone into effect, the annual limit on out-of-pocket drug expenses doesn’t begin until next year. The cap will make a big difference for seniors on expensive drugs for conditions like prostate or ovarian cancer who could see their annual costs drop from more than $10,000 to $2,000.

But even after the benefit kicks in, Neuman said, seniors may think, “`this is something great for me,’ without understanding that this is something that President Biden and the Democrats in Congress worked hard to pass for them.”

The Biden campaign is trying to change that.

“For decades, politicians tried to lower prescription drug costs. But Joe Biden finally got it done,” declares a Biden ad that aired around the televised Thanksgiving Day matchup between the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers. The teams are from the presidential battleground states of Michigan and Wisconsin.  

Trump’s threats to health law

The Biden campaign launched a new ad Thursday in response to Trump’s post on his Truth Social platform criticizing Obamacare as too expensive and “not good healthcare.”

“I’m seriously looking at alternatives,” Trump wrote. More than 40 million Americans are enrolled in Obamacare.

Biden’s latest campaign ad features a pediatric nurse from Nevada – another battleground state – calling the Trump administration’s health care policies “troubling.”

“I don’t want to go back,” the nurse says.

Republicans tried, and failed, to undo the Affordable Care Act at the start of Trump’s presidency when the GOP controlled both the House and Senate.

Obamacare fades as a GOP issue

The public began viewing the law more favorably when Congress was debating its repeal, according to KFF’s health tracking polls.

Once a key health care issue for Republican voters, the future of the ACA is now more important to Democrats.

Seven in ten Democratic voters said it is a “very important” issue for the 2024 candidates to discuss compared with 32% of GOP voters, according to the latest KFF survey.

The Democratic Party has a 20 percentage-point advantage on which party voters trust to do a better job of handling the ACA. Among independent voters, 61% say they trust Democrats more compared with 36% who trust Republicans.

The survey of 1,401 adults, including 1,072 registered voters, was conducted from Oct. 31 through Nov. 7.  The margin of error is plus or minus four percentage points.

Source: USA Today