Poll: Most Americans — and most Catholics — support Obama rule on contraception coverage

Republican politicians are sadly mistaken if they think there’s political hay to be made with their preposterous claim that President Obama is waging war on the Catholic Church, or on religion in general, with his regulation regarding contraception coverage in health plans.

As the chart above makes clear, a solid majority of Americans sides with Obama on this issue, according to the latest CBS News/New York Times POLL. Support among Catholic respondents is the same 61 percent.

And there’s this:

Majorities of both men and women said they are in favor of the rule, though support among women is especially pronounced, with 66 percent supporting and 26 percent opposing it. Among men, 55 percent of men are in favor; 38 percent object.

Think about those numbers for women for a moment. And then consider the strong likelihood that more women than men will be voting next November. Do you see the implications here? Do you see the potential electoral dangers for the Republican Party if it persists in its foolish war against contraception coverage?

If Republican politicians finally perceive this reality before it’s too late, it’s going to be fun to watch how they try to retreat from their phony moralism on the contraception issue.

UPDATE: For the sake of accuracy, perhaps I should clarify the results of the CBS/NYT poll.

The chart at the top and the numbers in the first paragraph and the indented paragraph reflect only responses to the question of requiring religious employers to cover contraception.

The numbers are even better in response to this more general question: “Do you support or oppose a recent federal requirement that private health insurance plans cover the full cost of birth control for their female patients?”

On this one, 66 percent of Americans are supportive, and 26 percent are opposed.

Independents support it by 64-26.

Moderates support it by 68-22.

Women support it by 72-20.

Catholics in general support it by 67-25.

Catholics who attend church every week or almost every week support it by 48-43.

And even Republicans support it by 50-44.






  1. Most people want “free stuff” ? Shocking results.

  2. doc: Employer health care plans are part of the compensation paid to employees. Nobody’s getting anything for “free.” It’s all part of the transactional relationship between employers and employees.

    You get a health plan from your employer, right? Are you just another one of those people who want “free stuff”? Of course not. Such “benefits” as health insurance are just part of the deal. It’s a marketplace transaction.

  3. Of course they are part of the compensation paid to an employee. The feds are just mandating how much that compensation will cost. Either the employer eats the cost of mandated benefits or the cost is passed on to the employee.

    But if we are really trying to control the ever rising costs of health care why should we mandate coverage for something that is readily available over the counter? Why should we force employers to pay for something that not all of their employees need/want?

    Politics, that’s why.

  4. (Reuters) – Spending by U.S. states on Medicaid, the healthcare program for the poor, soared last year and will likely continue growing despite measures to contain costs, according to a report released on Tuesday.
    Total Medicaid spending, excluding administrative costs, likely reached $398.6 billion in fiscal 2011, which ended in June for most states. That was up 10.1 percent from the year before, when spending rose 6 percent, the National Association of State Budget Officers reported.
    Medicaid was nearly one-quarter of all state expenditures in fiscal 2011, compared to elementary and secondary education, which accounted for 20 percent of all spending.
    Based only on state general fund spending, which is backed by tax revenue, education represented 35 percent and Medicaid 17.4 percent.

    Like expdoc said, most people want “free stuff”. Please explain to me Pat how Obamacare is going to reduce the costs of boondoggles like medicaid, give everyone universal health care, and make America the economic utopia all the freeloaders know it can be (if just someone else would foot the bill). And don’t even mention the words social security or medicare, because they are paid for by workers and their employers (before congress steals the money out of it for the general revenue fund). Where is all that medicaid/Obamacare money going to come from?

  5. By the way, Terry and doc, I’ve updated the post above with more numbers. I think you’ll find them most heartening.

  6. “Do you support or oppose a recent federal requirement that private health insurance plans cover the full cost of birth control for their female patients?”

    Again, just like doc said, people want free stuff. The question should have been worded “…insurance plans PROVIDE birth control for their female patients”. There ain’t no such thing as free health insurance. Also, why should only women get free birth control? What about men? Smacks of sexism to me.

  7. Very heartening. It perfectly proves the point that people will always say yes to free stuff.

    I would love to see the answer to the following poll questions:

    ” 1)Would you be in favor of mandating (x) coverage if it meant higher health insurance costs for your family or your employer?

    2) Would you be in favor of higher health care costs for your employer if it could mean you would be offered less/no health insurance coverage or that you may lose your job?”

  8. Also, Doc:

    3) Would you be in favor of taking a 25% cut in pay to help pay for your health insurance coverage, your family’s coverage, and the coverage for the 170,000,000 americans who do not work and do not have a paycheck to be cut?

  9. The poll numbers will change drastically once most Americans understand that the fundmental issues are not about the acceptance of contraceptive use nor about real world accessibility. Unless the Obama administration retreats on its own (unlikely since the die hard ideologues outnumber the the voices of reason on this within Obama’s own camp). Three separate lawsuits will be heard in the federal courts where Obama is sure to meet his Waterloo, and the constitutional issues will then become clear to most of those now responding with superficial understanding. Most of my clergy friends are liberals and Democrats but also well-educated and thoughful, so they are all naturally dismayed by the dangerous precedent the HHS birth control mandate sets. But purely from an economic & practical standpoint the HHS decision is exceedingly foolish & counterproductive (see University of Chicago finance Prof. John Cochrane’s article ” The Real Trouble With the Birth-Control Mandate “, available online).

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