Some things sound too good to be true. Usually, that means they are. In politics and policy that can mean voter opinions change dramatically depending on the question. When presented with personal costs, their virtue signaling can comes to a screeching halt.
For example, look at Medicare for All. Democrats are signing on to this idea in en mass as a fix for Obamacare. Let’s be honest. Single payer was always the goal when the so-called Affordable Care Act was passed. And while the idea seems to poll well, the realities do not.
Recently, The Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a poll. When simply asked “Do you favor or oppose having a national health plan, sometimes called Medicare for All?” the majority of respondents were in favor. Fifty-six percent said yes.
However, the survey then confronted participants with the realities of what that program would look like and the results shifted dramatically. Specifically, items related to the loss of private insurance, increased taxes, and the potential for delays in accessing and receiving care were extremely unpopular.
Huh, imagine that.
Another idea we keep hearing Democrats talking about is a Green New Deal. This “plan” is supposed to provide “environmental, economic and social justice” by achieving net neutral carbon emissions in 10 years. I also have a pet unicorn.
Of course, this will also require massive transfers of wealth, crippling burdens on industry and oppressive levels of regulation. Thank goodness polling indicates voters take the position I have heard Ben Shapiro embrace. Could climate change be happening? Possibly. If it is, is some portion is likely due to human behavior? Sure. Does that mean we should wreck the economy? No.
Voters still don’t see climate change as a pressing issue, even in acknowledging it may be real. Healthcare, education immigration and terrorism all rank as higher voter priorities. Yet, according to a poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research participants are willing to voice support for a lot of things. Including a carbon tax, in theory.
Yet they balk at parting with their money. If fixing the planet cost them $1 a month, 57 percent of those polled supported it. If it was going to cost $10 a month, support quickly fell to 28 percent.
Like the Kaiser survey, we probably need to let these folks know what a carbon tax will actually cost them. It will be far in excess of $1 a month. Or maybe we could just tell them why France is on fire? A proposed carbon tax.
These two polls should give Republican candidates some ideas on how to better combat the Democrats awful ones. Clearly Americans, while compassionate, still have their personal and economic well being at the forefront.
A few ideas. Adopt the Shapiro plan on climate change. Innovation is the solution. Regulation and penalties stifle the entrepreneurial spirit we need to innovate. Find examples of great ideas that are currently being worked on. And highlight our progress on emissions in the absence of the federal regualtory boot.
Next, cost every program the Democrats are touting and bring it down to the individual level. How will it effect the family of four that makes $55,000 a year? The single mother? Retirees? These polls show Americans do not want fewer options, reduced services or higher taxes. Apply that logic to every single issue.
Finally, have a plan. Be clear and specific in an alternative to Medicare for All and tell people what it means for them. Find an innovative solution to student loan debt. And explain why subsidizing rent is a horrible idea for the population that does not live in California, New York City and other high cost of living blue areas.
Americans are speaking loud and clear. They will virtue signal about ideas, but they want the government’s hands out of their wallet.
*Note: A previous version noted the CNN commentator was Allison Camarota. I was actually Dana Bash and the article was updated to reflect that.
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