The Cassidy-Graham bill probably won’t become law. And more than half of America is good with that, according to poll

Republicans’ last-ditch effort to repeal Obamacare was always a moonshot.

A bill proposed by Sens. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., looks like it doesn’t have enough support in the Senate to pass a party-line vote. Republican leaders were trying to rush something through by Sept. 30. And now, we find, it’s unpopular with the broader electorate.

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds that more than half of Americans prefer Obamacare (56 percent) to the latest GOP plan. A much smaller 33 percent of Americans prefer the bill that Senate Republicans, panicked by a month back home with their base and no Obamacare repeal to show, abruptly put on the table this month.

Worse for Republicans: Roughly twice as many people strongly prefer the current law to Republicans’ plan, 42 to 22 percent.

These aren’t necessarily gut reflexes either. The Post-ABC poll described three aspects of the Cassidy-Graham proposal to voters before asking what they prefer: its elimination of the requirement for nearly all Americans to have health insurance, the phasing out of federal funds to help lower and moderate income people buy health insurance, and letting states replace federal rules on health coverage with their own rules.

Of course, partisanship does color the way voters see this bill. Democrats are unsurprisingly supportive of the current health-care law – in all 85 percent of them prefer it to the Republican plan, with 70 percent strongly preferring it. Large majorities of urbanites, people under 40 and nonwhites also favor Obamacare to the GOP alternative.

Republicans favor the new plan by a nearly 3 to 1 margin, 66 to 23 percent over the current health-care law. But note that nearly a quarter of their party doesn’t support this bill, which is the closest thing to an Obamacare repeal that Congress has seriously considered.

Republicans are trapped right where they’ve been all along: struggling to pass a bill that’s unpopular within ideologically wide wings of their party and unpopular with a sizable swath of the general public. At one point, some reputable polls found Republicans’ health-care bill was about as popular as Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Meanwhile, Obamacare and big-government ideas like single-payer have been getting more popular.

Republicans were always going to be up against a perception problem on repealing Obamacare. “Government should get out of people’s health care!” is an easy sell for a politician, but it’s a much harder sell as a policy. Taking government out of people’s health care will take away some people’s health insurance – millions, according to official estimates from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said.

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