A large majority of New Jerseyans largely support expanding Medicare to provide basic health care coverage to every U.S. resident, regardless of age or employment status, according to a new Rutgers-Eagleton Poll.
According to the poll, 71% of Garden State adults expressed support (51% strongly, 20% somewhat) offering Medicare coverage to everyone in America – even if they are younger than 65 and/or employed.
Currently, the federal government health care plan is open to U.S. residents 65 and older.
The poll also found that 93% of residents who support program expansion would support New Jersey moving ahead with its own program to provide basic health care coverage to
every state resident (68% “strongly,” 25% “somewhat”) if it could be accomplished sooner instead of waiting for the federal government to expand the program.
Interestingly, the poll found that support for Medicare expansion is consistent across race and ethnicity, gender, income level, education, and age.
“Medicare expansion has taken center stage in political and social discourse in recent years,
and New Jerseyans appear amenable to a major shift in health care coverage as we know it,” Jessica Roman, a research associate at Eagleton Center for Public Interest Polling, said.
“A solid majority of residents support basic health care coverage for all whether it’s called
Medicare or not,” she added.
Among the roughly 25% of New Jerseyans who said they oppose Medicare expansion, the top reasons residents cite for their opposition include cost (38%), the belief the program should not be universal or should have restrictions (19%), distrust in the government to
handle all health care or the belief the private sector does so better (7%), opposition to socialism (5 percent), and concerns about a decrease in quality (5%).
The poll was conducted via phone with 1,006 New Jersey adults from August 30 to September 8. The margin of error was plus-or-minus 3.8 percentage points.