Support of President Obama and his signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act, has declined among Hispanics over the past six months, even though the popularity of both is nearly unchanged among the public overall, according to a new analysis of Pew Research Center survey data.
Today, as many Hispanics approve as disapprove (47%-47%) of the new health care law. That’s down markedly compared with the 61% approval just six months ago.
During the same time period, Obama’s job approval rating has slipped 15 points among Hispanics. About half of Hispanics (48%) approve of Obama’s job performance today, down from 63% in September 2013. (Among the general public today, 44% approve of Obama and 41% approve of the new law, neither significantly changed from September.) Hispanics’ support for Obama has declined
Since the troubled launch of the online health care exchange on Oct. 1, news coverage has noted low Hispanic enrollment and included criticism that the Spanish-language version of the website contained poor translations. Others have disputed that claim, arguing a major hurdle in enrolling more Hispanics in health insurance has been that many don’t understand the law. Another cause of low enrollment may be fear of federal authorities among U.S. citizens and residents with family members who are unauthorized immigrants.
In some respects, Hispanics might seem to be natural supporters of the president’s health care law. Most Hispanics (61%) say it is the government’s responsibility to make sure all Americans have health coverage, compared with 47% of the public overall who say this. Some 29% of Hispanics don’t have health insurance, according to the 2012 American Community Survey.
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