I have polling results from the folks at DFM Research regarding North Dakota sentiments about Obamacare and – surprise! – most people in the state still dislike the law. Which might not be a good thing for Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem who recently signed the state up to side with the Obama administration in a lawsuit challenging the law. Stenehjem is rumored to have aspirations for Governor in 2016. Obamacare may be something of an achilles heel while seeking the NDGOP nomination.
Probably not a good thing for Senator Heidi Heitkamp either, who won’t confirm or deny that she’s eyeing a run for governor herself in 2016.
I commissioned DFM Research to poll the campaigns during the 2014 election results. This polling was commissioned by the SMART Transportation Division’s North Dakota Legislative Board and BLET’s North Dakota Legislative Board, but DFM shared the results with me. The specifics of the polling sample are below. The poll was taken between January 17th and the 26th and included 4,000 landline calls and 1,700 cell phone calls.
Asked whether or not they approve of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, nearly 60 percent of North Dakotans said they don’t like it.
As you can see from the polling memo below, there were strong majorities opposed to Obamacare across age, gender, and geographic demographics. Women were slightly less likely than men to disapprove of the law. The lowest level of opposition came in the eastern urban and eastern rural areas, but both were still at about 50 percent opposition.
Ideological support/opposition broke down about as you might expect.
In terms of what should happen to the law, a strong majority (61 percent) want all or parts of the law repealed. Just 10 percent want the law to stand as-is.
To put this into context, going back to 2010 when nine-term incumbent Rep. Earl Pomeroy was on the ballot, and Obamacare was a thorn in his side, polling showed opposition to the law at 64 percent. Obamacare ultimately lost Pomeroy that election.
Democrats told us that as Obamacare was implemented people would come to embrace the law. Yet, it seems as though opposition to the law is about as intense now as it was back when it was first a campaign issue.