57% in Poll Back Public Option
Last-resort state-run plans gain 76% backing
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 19, 2009 6:23 PM CDT
Supporters of universal health care hold a banner outside of the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco, Oct. 15, 2009. President Obama was in San Francisco for a fundraising event.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
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(Newser) – A majority of Americans, 57%, support including a public option in health care reform legislation, according to a newly released poll. The public option had the backing of just 52% in a mid-August survey. Forty percent of respondents oppose the public option. And giving people who have no affordable alternatives access to programs run by individual states has the support of a whopping 76% in the Washington Post/ABC News poll.

Forty-eight percent of Americans oppose the umbrella measures currently under consideration in Congress, which have the support of 45%—roughly the same as in August. The results divide sharply along party lines, with 70% of Democrats backing health care reform and 90% of Republicans opposing it. Three-quarters of the uninsured support the legislation, compared to 53% of those who currently have insurance.