White House: When you ignore polls we don’t like, health care reform is only marginally unpopular

Byron York
Washington Examiner

In Saturday’s Washington Post, Joel Benenson, lead pollster for the White House, has published a response to an op-ed by Democratic strategists Pat Caddell and Doug Schoen, who argued Friday that the Democratic party’s “blind persistence” in the “march of folly” for health care reform will lead to an “electoral rout” in November.

Not so, says Benenson. The American public is, in fact, “closely divided when it comes to supporting or opposing various health-care plans.” As proof, Benenson cites a recent Washington Post poll showing that 49 percent of those surveyed oppose the current Democratic health care proposal, while 46 percent support it. (The Post poll also found that 60 percent say the Democratic plan is too complicated, 59 percent say it’s too expensive, and 74 percent say they trust their insurance company to handle their claims fairly — but never mind.)

Benenson says the Post results are reliable because they are “consistent with eight of the 12 most recent independent public polls reported on Pollster.com.” Which leads to a question: You’re looking at the last dozen polls on something. Why throw four of them out? And even then, do the remaining eight polls really support your case?

The answer is no.

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