Most Not Paying Attention to Pivotal Obamacare Lawsuit

Drew Altman: “The Supreme Court’s King v. Burwell ruling will make headlines whenever it arrives. It will also be genuine news to much of the country. The Kaiser Family Foundation’s Health Policy News Index, which tracks how closely the public follows health stories in the news, found that 59% of Americans have not been paying much or any attention to news stories about the case, and only 16% have been following very closely. That means that when the verdict comes the media’s first job will be to explain what the case was about.”

“The degree to which the news media have established the facts will help to umpire the blame game if Republicans in Congress condition an extension of subsidies in affected states on major changes to the law and the president vetoes such legislation and millions of Americans lose coverage. Much of the response to the ruling–like so much else about the Affordable Care Act–will follow partisan perspectives, with Republicans blaming the president and Democrats pointing fingers at congressional Republicans. News coverage could shape opinion in this instance because so many Americans have not been paying attention to the case.”

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  • pisher

    C’mon, Roberts, Kennedy–put the nation’s welfare first. You know how.

  • Calbengoshi

    Most Americans don’t pay attention to any Supreme Court case unless it gets lots of coverage on the news channel(s) they most frequently watch. Also, even if they have heard of the case, to the extent that they get their health insurance through an employer they are likely to conclude that the outcome of the case won’t affect them.

  • embo66

    God help us! Relying on today’s media to tell ANY story thoroughly, much less accurately, is a fool’s errand. While Democrats are definitely to blame for not adequately explaining, selling, or defending the ACA in all the years since 2009, the media is equally culpable for giving Republican lies about the law so much continual coverage. (And no, I’m not just talking about Fox News.)

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