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Poll: House health care bill unpopular in GOP districts

June 23rd, 2017 by WCBC Radio

The Baltimore Sun reports a majority of voters in deeply red congressional districts oppose the health care overhaul approved by the House last month, a finding that could complicate efforts to get the legislation to President Donald J. Trump’s desk, according to a University of Maryland poll released Wednesday.

The survey, conducted by the University of Maryland’s Program for Public Consultation, found that 63 percent of voters in “very red” districts opposed the American Health Care Act while voters in “red” or “leans red” districts were against it 63 percent and 60 percent, respectively.

Those numbers come as Republican leaders in the Senate, under pressure to make good on longstanding campaign promises to repeal and replace Obamacare, are set to unveil a discussion draft of their own legislation Thursday. The measure is expected to differ from the House bill significantly.

The survey finds overall Republican support for the House effort — 64 percent of GOP voters nationally back the legislation — but overwhelming Democratic opposition combined with a concern among some Republicans would make selling the legislation difficult in Congress as well as in lawmakers’ districts. 

The group defined districts based on the nonpartisan Cook Political Report “partisan voting index.” A “very red” district had a score between 14 and 33. Under that rubric, Maryland’s 1st Congressional District — represented by Republican Rep. Andy Harris of Baltimore County — would just qualify with a score of 14.

Harris, a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, supported the House bill.

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