PRINCETON, N.J., March 12 (UPI) -- A Gallup poll indicates 48 percent of Americans polled oppose President Barack Obama's healthcare plan while 45 percent favor it.
Pollsters asked respondents to say in their own words why they either support or oppose the bill.
Supporters of healthcare legislation commonly cite a moral imperative as a reason for their support -- 29 percent of supporters agree that people need health insurance and there are too many without access to healthcare. Twelve percent cited a moral obligation to provide healthcare, while 4 percent say it would help senior citizens and 3 percent say it would help the poor.
Eighteen percent say the healthcare system is broken and 20 percent say cost or affordability is an issue and 10 percent say reform would make healthcare more affordable.
Twenty percent of reform opponents say it will raise insurance costs, 19 percent say it will not address the real problems in the system. Concerns about expanding government power are a common theme in opponents' responses, but relatively few oppose the bill because they think it allows federal funding for abortions.
The telephone poll of 1,014 U.S. adults, conducted March 4-7, has a margin of error of 4 percentage points.