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Poll: Healthcare summit draws skepticism

Feb. 25, 2010 at 8:05 AM

PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 25 (UPI) -- Skepticism is high on whether the bipartisan healthcare summit in Washington will reach an agreement, a Gallup poll released Thursday indicated.

If no consensus is reached at Thursday's summit, Americans -- by a 49 percent-to-42 percent margin -- said they oppose Congress passing a healthcare bill similar to the one offered by Obama and Democrats in the House and Senate, the Gallup-USA Today poll results indicated.

More than three-quarters of Americans said they didn't think the sides would reach an agreement on a healthcare bill, the Princeton, N.J., polling agency said.

Poll participants also indicated their opposition -- 52 percent to 39 percent -- to Senate Democrats using reconciliation, a parliamentary procedure that requires a simple majority instead of 60 votes, to avoid a likely Republican filibuster.

Even though Americans oppose passage of the type of healthcare bill Obama proposed Monday, they give the president props for his effort at bipartisanship, Gallup said. Fifty-six percent of respondents said they believe Obama and the Democrats will make a sincere effort at the summit to work with congressional Republicans on solutions to healthcare reform while 41 percent said Republicans would do the same.

Results are based on nationwide telephone interviews of 1,009 adults conducted Tuesday. The margin of error is 4 percentage points.

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