The Denver Post - - FRONT PAGE - By Ri­cardo Alonso-Zal­divar

Only about 1 in 4 peo­ple in the United States wants Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump to en­tirely re­peal the Af­ford­able Care Act.

wash­ing­ton» Only about one in four peo­ple in the United States wants Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump to en­tirely re­peal his pre­de­ces­sor’s health care law that ex­tended coverage to mil­lions, ac­cord­ing to a poll.

The post­elec­tion sur­vey re­leased Thurs­day by the non­par­ti­san Kaiser Fam­ily Foun­da­tion also found hints of a prag­matic shift among some Repub­li­can foes of Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s law.

While 52 per­cent of Repub­li­cans say they want the law com­pletely re­pealed, that share is down from 69 per­cent just last month, be­fore the elec­tion. More Repub­li­cans now say they want the law “scaled back” un­der Trump and the Repub­li­can-con­trolled Congress, with that share more than dou­bling from 11 per­cent be­fore the Nov. 8 elec­tion to 24 per­cent af­ter.

Kaiser CEO Drew Alt­man said the foun­da­tion’s polling experts aren’t quite sure what to make of that find­ing.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion is a clear­ing­house for in­for­ma­tion and anal­y­sis about the health care sys­tem.

It could be that some Repub­li­cans “got a protest vote off their chests, and they’re done with that,” Alt­man said. “They now have a more mod­er­ate po­si­tion.”

Trump called the Af­ford­able Care Act a “dis­as­ter” dur­ing an elec­tion cam­paign that saw big pre­mium in­creases an­nounced in its clos­ing days. Af­ter the vote, Trump has been say­ing he’d like to keep parts of the law.

With open en­roll­ment un­der­way, no changes are ex­pected next year for the more than 10 mil­lion peo­ple cur­rently cov­ered through Health­Care.gov and state mar­kets that of­fer sub­si­dized pri­vate in­sur­ance. An ad­di­tional es­ti­mated 9 mil­lion low-in­come peo­ple cov­ered by Med­i­caid in states that ex­panded the pro­gram also are safe for now.

Health­Care.gov sign-ups are run­ning a lit­tle higher than last year — 2.1 mil­lion through Satur­day, as com­pared with about 2 mil­lion. But the share of new cus­tomers is down, 24 per­cent this year ver­sus 35 per­cent last year at the same time. The mar­kets need an in­flux of younger, health­ier con­sumers to help keep pre­mi­ums in check.

On Capi­tol Hill, Repub­li­can lead­ers want to re­peal the law quickly be­fore an in­ter­lude and tran­si­tion to a re­place­ment. That ap­proach car­ries po­lit­i­cal risk be­cause the re­place­ment leg­is­la­tion could bog down, and there’s no guar­an­tee of suc­cess.

The un­cer­tainty could dis­rupt coverage for mil­lions by desta­bi­liz­ing frag­ile in­sur­ance mar­kets.

The poll found some skep­ti­cism about that ap­proach. Forty-two per­cent of those who want the 2010 law re­pealed said law­mak­ers should wait un­til they fig­ure out the de­tails of a re­place­ment plan be­fore do­ing so.

Among the pro­vi­sions with sup­port across party lines:

• Al­low­ing young adults to stay on a par­ent’s in­sur­ance un­til age 26.

• No co­pay­ments for many pre­ven­tive ser­vices.

• Clos­ing the Medi­care pre­scrip­tion drug coverage gap known as the “dough­nut hole.”

• Fi­nan­cial help for lowand mod­er­ate-in­come peo­ple to pay their in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums.

• A state op­tion to ex­pand Med­i­caid to cover more low-in­come adults.

• Bar­ring in­sur­ance com­pa­nies from deny­ing coverage be­cause of a per­son’s med­i­cal his­tory.

• In­creased Medi­care pay­roll taxes for up­per-in­come earn­ers.

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