published Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Vanderbilt poll: Tennesseans wanted state to run health insurance exchange, not feds

Gov. Bill Haslam
Gov. Bill Haslam
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE — Tennesseans favor the state running a health insurance exchange instead of letting the federal government do it, according to a new Vanderbilt University poll released today.

The survey of 829 registered voters shows 53 percent preferred the state run the online marketplace, which will help lower-income Tennesseans find insurance under the federal health care law.

Just 33 percent favored having the federal government do it.

But while most of those surveyed, many of them Republicans, wanted the state to run the exchange, Republican Gov. Bill Haslam earlier this week rejected that approach.

Other poll findings show:

— In another area related to the federal Affordable Care Act, Tennesseans are virtually evenly split over whether to expand Medicaid to cover more people. Forty-seven percent favored the expansion, over which Haslam and Republicans in the state Legislature are still grappling. Forty-six percent support keeping it as it is.

— Seventy-four percent of the respondents want their elected leaders in the legislature to work with members of the opposing party even if that means they need to compromise on their values and priorities.

— Sixty-eight percent said they approved of Haslam’s job performance. A more-narrow majority of 52 percent approved of the Republican-led legislature. Sixty percent approved of the job done by U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn. Job approval levels for U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., were at 56 percent among respondents.

But Tennessee’s nine-member congressional delegation only received 21 percent approval.

The survey was conducted on behalf of Vanderbilt University’s Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Calls were made from Nov. 27 through Dec. 9. The margin of error is plus or minus 4.3 percentage points, and calls were made to Tennesseans on both landline and cell phones.

For complete details, see tomorrow’s Chattanooga Times Free Press.

about Andy Sher...

Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...

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