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Polling

New York Times|SurveyMonkey poll: December 2019

New York Times|SurveyMonkey poll: December 2019

Concerns about the cost of healthcare, the cost of college, and the budget deficit are high among both Democrats and Republicans—a rare point of unity in a very partisan era. In a December New York Times|SurveyMonkey poll, 91% of people say they are concerned about the cost of healthcare, 83% are concerned about the federal budget deficit, and 78% are concerned about the cost of a college degree.

Free college and universal health care are two of the leading Democratic policy proposals, but Democrats disagree on how far they are willing to go to implement each of these policies. Half of Democrats and Democratic leaners (50%) say the U.S. should adopt policies like universal health care and free college only if it can do so without increasing the budget deficit, while 38% say those policies should be adopted even if doing so increases the budget deficit. Another nine percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners say those policies should not be adopted at all.

Democrats are torn between various proposals that would reduce the cost of college tuition. Nearly even numbers of Democrats and Democratic leaners say:

  • The government should take steps to make college more affordable, but most families should still have to pay something (35%);
  • The government should make public colleges free to middle- and low-income Americans, but wealthy families should still have to pay (32%); and
  • The government should make public colleges free for all Americans, regardless of income (30%)

There is more, but not universal, agreement on healthcare. When given three options to choose from, a majority of Democrats and Democratic leaners (58%) say "the U.S. should offer government-run insurance to anyone who wants it, but people should be able to keep their private insurance if they prefer it." Another quarter (25%) say "the U.S. should adopt a national health care plan in which all Americans get their insurance from a single government plan," while 11% say "the U.S. should reform its existing health insurance system another way, without creating a government-run plan."

For more detailed results, click through the interactive toplines below.
Read more about our polling methodology here

Question text:
Which one of the following issues matters MOST to you right now?
Would you say that you and your family are better off or worse off financially than you were a year ago?
Now looking ahead - do you think that a year from now you and your family will be better off financially, worse off financially, or just about the same as now?
Now turning to business conditions in the country as a whole - do you think that during the next 12 months we'll have good or bad times financially?
Looking ahead, which would you say is more likely to take place in the next five years for the country as a whole:
Thinking about the big things people buy for their homes - such as furniture, a stove, a television… Generally speaking, do you think now is a good or bad time for people to buy major household items?
As you may know, periods of economic growth are followed by periods of recession. Do you think a recession over the next year is…

How concerned are you about the federal budget deficit?
How concerned are you about the cost of a college degree in the U.S.?
How concerned are you about the cost of healthcare in the U.S.?
Which of the following comes closest to your view, even if none is exactly right?
Which of the following comes closest to your view on public colleges, even if none is exactly right?
Which of the following comes closest to your view on healthcare, even if none is exactly correct?
(Among Democrats and Democratic leaners) Regardless of whom you may support, which of the 2020 Democratic presidential election candidates do you trust most to handle the economy?
(Among Democrats and Democratic leaners) Regardless of whom you may support, which of the 2020 Democratic presidential election candidates do you trust most to handle healthcare?
(Among Democrats and Democratic leaners) Regardless of whom you may support, which of the 2020 Democratic presidential election candidates do you trust most to handle international affairs?
Joe Biden / Bernie Sanders / Elizabeth Warren / Pete Buttigieg / Michael Bloomberg / Andrew Yang / Julian Castro / Cory Booker / Amy Klobuchar / Tom Steyer / Tulsi Gabbard / Marianne Williamson / Kamala Harris / Steve Bullock / John Delaney / Michael Bennet / Deval Patrick
*voters