House Republicans' government shutdown in October did no favors for a congress that hit new lows in approval this year. However, the botched rollout of the Healthcare.gov website also shifted Americans' opinions against the very law that Republicans were protesting against.
A new Gallup poll conducted this week shows that disapproval for the ACA is dropping at a consistent rate. From the high of 55% of Americans who said they generally disapprove of the Affordable Care Act in November, the rate of disapproval for the legislation has now dropped to the slim majority of 51%. Approval for the ACA, which dropped to 40% November, has not rebounded with only 41% of Americans this week saying they generally approve of the legislation.
Perhaps surprisingly, approval of the ACA is is up among both Democrats and Republicans since late November. Democrat approval for the law has begun rising after the October dip and now sits at 75%. Republican approval ticked up only slightly to 10%. Independent approval for the ACA, on the other hand, saw a significant drop to just 31% from the steady 38% to 39% it had been throughout November.
With less than a majority of Americans actually approving of the ACA, Gallup is predicting that the healthcare legislation will once again be a major campaign focus for candidates in next year's midterm elections. However, with a bi-partisan budget now looking like a real possibility it seems that Americans will not have to deal with another government shutdown over the issue.