The approval gap for Obamacare has narrowed to the closest margin in over two years, according to the latest Kaiser Foundation survey
. Forty-three percent still disapprove of the law, 41 percent approve, and those numbers are still strikingly partisan; "Most Republicans voice an unfavorable opinion (74 percent), most Democrats voice a favorable opinion (65 percent), and independents are more divided (37 favorable, 47 unfavorable)." All the same, keeping and/or expanding the law remains more popular than repealing it, 46 to 40 percent.
And 62 percent believe that a Supreme Court ruling striking down subsidies in the states using the federal health insurance exchange would be damaging to the country, while the usual 23 percent of hard-core Republican voters think it would be good for the country. But, in the states that use the federal exchange and would thus lose those subsidies, about 60 percent of Republicans, 70 percent of independents and 80 percent of Democrats believe their states should do something to restore the subsidies if the court strikes them down.
And as for Justices Alito's and Scalia's big idea that it's okay for the court to gut the law because Congress will fix it? The public has been paying a lot more attention; 80 percent say Congress can't come together to fix it, and 78 percent say Republicans can't work with President Obama to fix it.
Awareness of the King v. Burwell
case isn't high—more than half weren't really aware of the challenge. Drew Altman, the foundation's president, told
the New York Times
that despite that lack of awareness, "when we explain the issue to them, I think it's just a matter of common sense or fairness: They don't get why people in some states should get financial help from the government but people in other states would not get it." Expect that sense of fairness to turn into outrage if the court strikes down subsidies and Republicans do nothing to restore them.