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The Implications of the 1992 Presidential Election for Health Care Reform

Robert J. Blendon, ScD; Drew E. Altman, PhD; John M. Benson, MA; Humphrey Taylor; Matt James; Mark Smith, MD, MBA
JAMA. 1992;268(23):3371-3375. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490230101040.
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WHAT message about health reform should our elected officials, the health care community, and the American people take from the 1992 presidential election? As an issue, health care enjoyed considerable prominence in the presidential campaign. But is there sufficient support to pass a health reform plan? And if so, from the voters' perspective, what would such a plan have to look like?

This article uses the results of an election night survey of voters, combined with secondary analysis of preelection and election-day exit polls, to examine these questions. The public's responses tell us a great deal about the role of health care in the 1992 election and in the agenda for the newly elected President and Congress.

Data and Methods  The data reported herein are derived primarily from three sources. The first is a national public opinion survey conducted on election night, November 3,1992, by Louis Harris & Associates on


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