Poll Says Majority of Americans Prefer 'Medicare For All' Health Care

Surveyed people preferred Sanders' healthcare plan, of three candidates

ByABC News
May 16, 2016, 4:01 PM
US Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks during a rally in Atlantic City, N.J, May 9, 2016.
US Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks during a rally in Atlantic City, N.J, May 9, 2016.
Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

— -- A growing number of Americans now support the idea of federally-funded healthcare, according to a new poll conducted by Gallup measuring response to each of the three remaining Presidential candidates' proposed healthcare policies.

When presented with three different scenarios for the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), based on the candidates' positions, 58 percent of U.S. adults favored Sen. Bernie Sanders' idea of replacing the law with a single-payer, federally-funded healthcare system that provides insurance for all Americans.

For this poll, Gallup surveyed a random sample of 1,549 adults between May 6 and May 8 of this year about which of the three candidates' healthcare policies they preferred, without using any of their names. The majority expressed a preference for Sanders' proposal to replace the ACA with some form of the "Medicare for All" system, compared to Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton's proposal to maintain the ACA and presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump's proposal to repeal it.

A slight majority of those polled, 51 percent, favored repealing the ACA, as Trump proposes, and 48 percent favor keeping the ACA in place following Clinton.

Respondents could choose more than one option and many did. For example, 35 percent said they would favor keeping the ACA and also said they favored replacing it with a federally-funded healthcare system. Choosing both options was common among Democrats and those leaning Democratic -- 59 percent favored both approaches. When those who chose both options were asked which they would prefer if they could only choose one, 64 percent said they would choose the federally-funded healthcare system.

Data from the poll suggests a recent shift, since a previous Gallup poll in March indicated that a majority of Americans still preferred a privately-run health care system to a government-run single-payer system.

Other surveys have also shown a growing trend in approval for so-called European-style government in America. In February, a Harvard University survey discovered that a majority of 18-to-29-year-olds, did not support capitalism, and preferred socialism instead.

Sanders, a self-described Democratic Socialist, has made health care reform and his notion of "Medicare for All" a focal point of his campaign.