Single payer has often been seen as a far-left radical view that does not comport with practical realities, especially in comparison to a much more moderate national healthcare program like the Affordable Care Act.
While critics of a single payer system might still make that argument about implementing such a plan, a new poll out on Thursday by The Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation found that, to the American public, the two plans are similarly popular. According to the poll, 53 percent of respondents support the ACA, while 51 percent of people said they back single payer.
In fact, the progressive policy shop Data for Progress also recently found that Medicare for All has majority support in 42 states across the country.
The political drawback, of course, is that previous polling has shown support for single payer falls when the kinds of talking points Republicans would certainly use against the policy are deployed. When arguments in favor of single payer are used, support goes up.
Still, as public support grows, it’s becoming harder and harder to paint single payer as an idea at the political margins.