NPR Spins ObamaCare's All-Time Unpopularity as Merely a 'Blip'

On Wednesday, NPR's resident ObamaCare booster Jule Rovner spotlighted the left-leaning Kaiser Family Foundation's latest tracking poll on the law. Rovner indicated that 51% unpopularity for the legislation in October was merely a "blip," and played up how "the public is still confused about what the law does and does not do, more than 18 months after its passage."

The journalist led her November 30 item for NPR's "Shots" blog, "Health Law's Popularity Rises...Ever So Slightly," with her "blip" label. After briefly noting that "the federal Affordable Care Act still remains slightly more unpopular 44 percent) than popular (37 percent)," she explained that "the major reason for the uptick is the rebound in support among Democrats. Their favorability ratings jumped from 52 percent last month to 62 percent this month."

Just over a month ago, in an October 28 item for NPR health blog, the journalist bewailed the "crummy month for sentiment" for ObamaCare, downplaying Kaiser Family's October findings as "just one poll of many."

Julie Rovner, NPR Correspondent | NewsBusters.orgRovner later emphasized that "many of the law's individual elements remain quite popular among those from across the ideological spectrum," citing how "more than 80 percent of respondents favor a requirement that insurance plans provide an easy-to-understand summary of benefits and another that provides tax credits for small businesses."

On August 30, 2011, the NPR correspondent bemoaned on Morning Edition that only "a third of those without health insurance think the law will help them, and that's because only about half know that it includes key provisions that will make insurance more available and affordable." She did something similar exactly three month later in her latest item, hyping the public's supposed ignorance of ObamaCare as she tried to sell its provisions:

Finally, the poll found the public is still confused about what the law does and does not do, more than 18 months after its passage. More than 40 percent of those polled did not know the law included such popular provisions as the requirements for simple benefit summaries and providing preventive services without cost-sharing. At the same time, more than half still thought it includes a government-run insurance plan, which it does not.

It should again be pointed out that NPR has a joint partnership with Kaiser Family Foundation, in conjunction with Harvard University's School of Public Health. The three institutions "work together to select topics, develop the survey questionnaire and analyze the results, with NPR maintaining editorial control over all its broadcasts on the surveys."

Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan is a news analyst at Media Research Center