CNN Poll: Only 21% Favor Getting Rid of Private Insurance; Majority Oppose Healthcare for Illegals

Zach Montanaro | July 2, 2019
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A new poll by CNN shows that only a small fraction of Americans want to completely abolish private insurance, while a vast majority oppose giving healthcare coverage to illegal immigrants.

Respondents were asked the question “Do you think the government should provide a national health insurance program for all Americans, even if this would require higher taxes?” A majority (56%) said they supported the idea, while 40% opposed it.

However, of those who supported a government-provided health insurance, only 21% were in favor of completely getting rid of private insurance. A plurality (32%) said a government-run program “should not completely replace private insurance” or had no opinion (3%).

This is in stark contrast to some of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, who have openly embraced the idea of ditching private insurance in favor of a government-run healthcare system.

During the two Democratic debates, Elizabeth Warren, Bill de Blasio, Bernie Sanders, and Kamala Harris all raised their hands when asked if their healthcare plans would get rid of private insurance entirely (with Harris later backtracking, saying she misunderstood the question).

The poll also showed another worrying sign for Democrats, as a clear majority of Americans said they opposed giving health insurance to illegal immigrants.

When asked “Do you think health insurance coverage provided by the government should or should not be available to undocumented immigrants living in the United States?” 59% of Americans opposed the idea, while only 38% supported it.

During the second Democratic debate, all 10 candidates on stage -- which included Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, and Kamala Harris -- raised their hands when asked if their healthcare plans gave coverage to illegals.

The question was not asked during the first debate.

Republicans have eagerly seized the opportunity to highlight the Democrats’ continued leftward shift, with President Trump highlighting Democrats’ recent embrace of providing healthcare to those who enter the country illegally.


Even other Democrats and media pundits have questioned whether the open embrace of far-left ideas is good in the long-run.

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough called the first two debates a “disaster” for Democrats, and former Democratic Senator Evan Bayh said that promising healthcare for illegal immigrants is something that will “come back to haunt them in the general election.”

Republicans have been eager to paint the Democratic candidates’ ideas as an embrace of socialism.

“Americans learned nothing we didn’t already know about today’s radical Democratic Party after two nights of debates between 20 presidential candidates in Miami,” RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel said in an op-ed after the two debates. “The bottom line is that this week’s debates were yet another reminder of the 2020 Democrats’ far-left lurch toward socialism. That’s a dramatic contrast to the Trump administration’s pro-American, pro-worker, and pro-growth policies.”

You can read the full results of the CNN poll here.