Poll shows little senior support for Medicare vouchers

A new poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation shows scant support among seniors for a Republican proposal to restructure the Medicare system.

Only 30 percent of those seniors polled say they approve of the plan initially floated earlier this month by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) to transform Medicare into a voucher program. By contrast, 62 percent of those polled say they want the program to guarantee the same level of benefits.

The poll of 1,207 adults was conducted between April 7 and April 12, after Ryan made his presentation, but before President Obama condemned the plan in a speech.

However, there was more of a split as to whether any changes should be made to the program. Fifty percent of respondents say they want the program to remain unchanged, while 46 percent say they want changes made to the program.

Political affiliation also tended to shape opinion. Sixty-three percent of Democrats were in favor of keeping the program intact, while 41 percent of Republicans supported keeping Medicare unchanged.

However, other polls suggest widely varying opinions on restructuring Medicare, dependent primarily on how the questions are phrased.

For more information:
- read the Kaiser Health News article
- see the poll data