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KFF Explores Health Reform and the Tea Party Movement

With much media discussion of the role that the Tea Party will play in the upcoming congressional midterm elections, the Kaiser Family Foundation took a closer look at Tea Party supporters using its most recent Health Tracking Poll data from September. While 57 percent of voters who do not support the Tea Party movement view the health reform law favorably, 57 percent of Tea Party supporters view the law “very” unfavorably, and another 11 percent “somewhat unfavorably.” At the same time, nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of Tea Party supporters say they feel “angry” about health reform, even though most (82 percent) of these say their anger is more widely targeted at Washington as a whole rather than specific to the reform law. Republican Tea Party supporters show a more intense opposition to the health reform law than their fellow Republicans who don’t back the Tea Party; in the latter group, 42 percent have intensely negative views of the law, compared to 70 percent of Tea Party Republicans.