By Patricia Rice
Pagosa Daily Post (Pagosa Springs, Colo.), June 8, 2016
A recent poll conducted by Magellan Strategies shows ColoradoCare winning the battle of ideas when it comes to health care in Colorado.
Magellan, a nationally respected pollster that the Koch-brothers-backed Americans for Prosperity calls “a trusted partner” and that the Colorado Republican Committee calls “reliable and accurate,” did the research that shows Coloradans support Amendment 69’s universal health care plan regardless of which side of the argument they hear. The polls are bad news for Americans For Prosperity and the Colorado Republican Committee, both of whom have come out in opposition to ColoradoCare.
“These positive polls help explain the massive influx of money from the corporate insurance industry to fund the opposition to Amendment 69,” said Owen Perkins, Director of Communications for the ColoradoCareYES campaign. “Even our foes can see the writing on the wall as Coloradans embrace a sensible solution to the broken insurance industry model of putting profits over patients.”
The polling results were part of the Denver Business Journal’s comprehensive cover story on ColoradoCare at the end of May, which included the breaking news that the Magellan poll found a solid, winning majority of Colorado voters in support of Amendment 69.
“Pollster David Flaherty of Magellan noted that once they explained the measure to people in the way that backers would explain, approval of it went up among certain groups, giving it an overall approval of 55 percent of representative voters,” Business Journal reporter Ed Sealover wrote. “That included a 60 percent approval from millennials and 54 percent approval from voters 45 and older.”
Magellan’s results are consistent with the ColoradoCareYES campaign’s extensive polling of likely Colorado voters. If voters know nothing but the language on the ballot, the challenges are greater, but when they’re given even a minimal explanation of the “Medicare-for-All” model, the odds soar in favor of a ‘YES’ vote on Amendment 69.
As the Business Journal reports, a little education goes a long way with voters. ColoradoCare maintains a winning majority even when the explanation is given in the language opponents of Amendment 69 use to try and defeat the initiative.
“When pollsters re-explained it from opponents’ point of view, approval still remained at 51 percent, as opposed to 43 percent disapproval,” Sealover writes. “Again, it was millennials leading the way with 57 percent backing, though even senior citizens also supported it by a 51-41 margin, Flaherty said.”
That strong support from millennials is especially important, given their status as the largest voting block in both the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections. Amendment 69 will appear on the 2016 November ballot, another presidential election.
“This is encouraging news for ColoradoCare supporters — and empowering evidence of the opportunity for Colorado millennials to change the course of health care in our state and in our country with a YES vote on Amendment 69 on the November ballot,” Perkins said. “The polling shows what we see every day as we reach out and talk to voters across Colorado: when people know the facts about ColoradoCare, they like what they see.”
What’s not to like? ColoradoCare looked at the $30 billion Coloradans currently pay for health care, and found a way to lower the cost to $25 billion while providing universal coverage to ensure every Colorado resident has guaranteed full access to health care benefits that exceed the current standards under the Affordable Care Act. Amendment 69 offers a fiscally conservative solution that saves Coloradans a collective $4.5 billion or more each year compared to the current insurance model, and ColoradoCare includes no insurance premiums, no deductibles, and no co-pays for primary and preventive care.
The new plan is paid for primarily through a simple 3.33% payroll deduction for employees and by employers contributing 6.67% of payroll.
“For a worker with a $50,000 income, employers would have to pay $278 a month, and workers $139,” the Business Journal reports. “That compares to a $1,400 average monthly cost currently for a platinum-level small-group plan for a family of four in Denver.”
The winning trend supports the anecdotal evidence the campaign sees every day as Coloradans reject the fear-mongering and “untruths” of the opposition and make the informed decision to support an approach to health care that has been proven to work in every other industrialized country on the planet.
Amendment 69 offers a cost-saving solution to a corporate-insurance-controlled status quo health care system marked by skyrocketing premiums and deductibles that lead to hundreds of thousands of Coloradans going without health insurance and over 500 residents dying every year from the subsequent lack of treatment.
Colorado is poised to lead the country to make the kind of meaningful changes states have enacted throughout our nation’s history. States led the fight to give women the right to vote, to enact child labor laws, to allow interracial marriage, to allow marriage equality, to establish a minimum wage, to legalize medical and recreational marijuana, and so much more. Colorado can lead again in offering equal access to quality health care for all our residents.
For more information on ColoradoCare and Amendment 69, visit ColoradoCare.org.
PNHP note: For a short PNHP analysis of Amendment 69, the Colorado ballot initiative, click here.