Monday, November 30, 2009

POLITICS ON THE ROCKS Christmas Party at the Intercontinental Montelucia Resort" on Thursday, December 3 at 6:00pm

Politics on the Rocks is proud to announce our annual Christmas Party event on Thursday, December 3rd 6:00 PM at the Intercontinental Montelucia Resort & Spa in Paradise Valley, Arizona.

We look forward to seeing everyone at our final event of 2009. The Montelucia is always in the Christmas spirit because of the atmosphere, people, and Christmas lights all around.

We would like to thank everyone for making Politics on the Rocks the largest and fastest growing Republican & Conservative networking group in Arizona and in the Southwest.

Please come celebrate this accomplishment with us on December 3rd at the "Kasbah" bar located within the Intercontinental Monteclucia Resort. Bring a friend, date, work colleague, or fellow Republican/Conservative to "Rock the Kasbah."

In 2010, we have many national and local politicians scheduled to speak. Here is video from the last POTR event @ the Monteclucia:

Please stay tuned each month for details. We look forward to seeing everyone at the Intercontinental Montelucia Resort & Spa at the "Kasbah" on Thursday, December 3rd 6:00 PM.


Politics on the Rocks Executive Board

PS- Please join today! Click on the Republicanville Logo below to join!




Most Americans Prefer 'Merry Christmas' To 'Happy Holidays' - Rasmussen Reports™

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Amidst all the holiday shopping craziness, most Americans at this time of year want to see holiday signs that wish them a "Merry Christmas."

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 72% of adults prefer "Merry Christmas," while 22% like "Happy Holidays" instead.

Older Americans favor "Merry Christmas" more than younger adults.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter.

Married adults fancy the traditional greeting a lot more than unmarrieds, although there is virtually no difference in the views of those with children in the home and those who don't have children living with them.

Perhaps inevitably as with much of what is polled by Rasmussen Reports, there is a partisan difference on the question. Ninety-one percent (91%) of Republicans and 70% of adults not affiliated with either major political party like store signs that wish them a "Merry Christmas," compared to just 58% of Democrats. Last year, 68% of all adults wanted holiday signs to read "Merry Christmas," while 25% preferred "Happy Holidays." In a spearate survey released just before Thanksgiving, seven percent (7%) of Americans said they've already completed their holiday shopping. But 57% of adults hadn't started yet.

The good news is that 53% of Americans said they were more thankful this Thanksgiving than they were last year at this time.

Please sign up for the Rasmussen Reports daily e-mail update (it’s free) or follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Let us keep you up to date with the latest public opinion news.

People Smarter than Obama

American people smarter than Holder or Obama
Rick Moran, American Thinker

A strong majority of Americans believe that Obama is wrong to try KSM in a civilian court.

That's the result of a new Gallup poll: By 59% to 36%, more Americans believe accused Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed should be tried in a military court, rather than in a civilian criminal court.

Most Republicans and independents favor holding the trial in a military court, while the slight majority of Democrats disagree.

These findings come from a Nov. 20-22 USA Today/Gallup poll conducted a week after U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that Mohammed's case would move from a military tribunal in Guantanamo Bay, where the admitted terrorist was originally charged, to a federal court in New York City. "Despite their sharp differences over how to bring Mohammed to justice, Republicans and Democrats largely agree that, if found guilty, he should pay the ultimate price."

Public opinion is a bit less contrary to Holder's decision regarding the venue for the trial. Although the majority of Americans (51%) say Mohammed should face trial somewhere other than New York City, 42% -- slightly higher than the percentage favoring a civilian trial -- support holding the trial in the city where the vast majority of Americans lost their lives on Sept. 11.

Governor Brewer's Public Schedule for the Week Beginning Monday, November 30, 2009

Public Schedule For Governor Jan Brewer
Week of November 30 – December 6, 2009

Monday, November 30, 2009

· 10 a.m. – Governor to Light State Capitol Christmas Tree in Special Ceremony
Arizona State Capitol, Executive Tower Lobby

1700 West Washington

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

· 11 a.m. – Governor to Speak at DUI Task Force Press Conference

17th Avenue Between Adams and Jefferson

Friday, December 4, 2009

· Governor to Attend Arizona-Mexico Commission Plenary Session
Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico

Saturday, December 5, 2009

· Governor to Attend Arizona-Mexico Commission Plenary Session
Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico

Saturday, November 28, 2009


A short week due to the Thanksgiving Holiday! Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Click on any story below to read:

Friday, November 27, 2009

Kill the Bills. Do Health Reform Right by Charles Krauthammer

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Senators' Thanksgiving Chores: McCain: 'I'm Frying Two Turkeys!'

The Obama's First Thanksgiving in the White House!

Obama's Horn of Plenty by William Warren

We're thankful that Americans are standing up to Obama

Inside the numbers: How Obama has fallen By: Byron York

McCain "confident" the F-35 will be based in Tucson

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


McCain criticizes Senate health plan By: Derek Quizon The State Press


Obama Imitates Carter's Appeasement Diplomacy

Without Their Support By William Warren

Congratulations to BRAD CESMAT - 16th Annual Big Guy Turkey Drive a rousing success

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Obama Debt Now Tops $12 Trillion

Obama's Chicago Style Payoff

Byron York - Why was it so hard for Dems even to start health care debate?

ALG Statement: "Public Option" Defies Representative Government

Health Care Reform - Rasmussen Reports™

Editorial: Senate Must Filibuster "Public Option"

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Conservative Civil War Against the GOP – You Better Believe It! By SJ Reidhead The Pink Flamingo

Valley Citizens League Luncheon – TUES 24 NOV – Noon



Friday, November 27, 2009

Kill the Bills. Do Health Reform Right by Charles Krauthammer

The United States has the best health care in the world -- but because of its inefficiencies, also the most expensive. The fundamental problem with the 2,074-page Senate health-care bill (as with its 2,014-page House counterpart) is that it wildly compounds the complexity by adding hundreds of new provisions, regulations, mandates, committees and other arbitrary bureaucratic inventions.

Worse, they are packed into a monstrous package without any regard to each other. The only thing linking these changes -- such as the 118 new boards, commissions and programs -- is political expediency. Each must be able to garner just enough votes to pass. There is not even a pretense of a unifying vision or conceptual harmony.

The result is an overregulated, overbureaucratized system of surpassing arbitrariness and inefficiency. Throw a dart at the Senate to me:

-- You'll find mandates with financial penalties -- the amounts picked out of a hat.

-- You'll find insurance companies (who live and die by their actuarial skills) told exactly what weight to give risk factors, such as age. Currently insurance premiums for 20-somethings are about one-sixth the premiums for 60-somethings. The House bill dictates the young shall now pay at minimum one-half; the Senate bill, one-third -- numbers picked out of a hat.

-- You'll find sliding scales for health-insurance subsidies -- percentages picked out of a hat -- that will radically raise marginal income tax rates for middle- class recipients, among other crazy unintended consequences.

The bill is irredeemable. It should not only be defeated. It should be immolated, its ashes scattered over the Senate swimming pool.

Then do health care the right way -- one reform at a time, each simple and simplifying, aimed at reducing complexity, arbitrariness and inefficiency.

First, tort reform. This is money -- the low-end estimate is about half a trillion per decade -- wasted in two ways. Part is simply hemorrhaged into the legal system to benefit a few jackpot lawsuit winners and an army of extravagantly rich malpractice lawyers such as John Edwards.

The rest is wasted within the medical system in the millions of unnecessary tests, procedures and referrals undertaken solely to fend off lawsuits -- resources wasted on patients who don't need them and which could be redirected to the uninsured who really do.

In the 4,000-plus pages of the two bills, there is no tort reform. Indeed, the House bill actually penalizes states that dare "limit attorneys' fees or impose caps on damages." Why? Because, as Howard Dean has openly admitted, Democrats don't want "to take on the trial lawyers." What he didn't say -- he didn't need to -- is that they give millions to the Democrats for precisely this kind of protection.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


May all of you have a safe & wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend!

Giving Thanks

For the hay and the corn and the wheat that is reaped,
For the labor well done, and the barns that are heaped,
For the sun and the dew and the sweet honeycomb,
For the rose and the song and the harvest brought home --Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!
For the trade and the skill and the wealth in our land,
For the cunning and strength of the workingman's hand,
For the good that our artists and poets have taught,
For the friendship that hope and affection have brought --Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!
For the homes that with purest affection are blest,
For the season of plenty and well-deserved rest,
For our country extending from sea unto sea;
The land that is known as the "Land of the Free" --Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

Senators' Thanksgiving Chores: McCain: 'I'm Frying Two Turkeys!'

Senators may have assistants in Washington to do their correspondence and driving, but once they get home, many are more likely to be taking orders than giving them, especially when Thanksgiving dinner needs to get on the table.

From three hours of dusting to whipping up a batch of sauerkraut, here are the surprising answers the Capitolist got when we asked senators, "Are you cooking for Thanksgiving this year?"

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.): Yes! I fry turkeys. I fry two turkeys. One you can eat then and one you can eat later. I still haven't burned the porch off. We have a place up in northern Arizona, and the whole family will all be there -- the Marine guy, the Navy guy [his sons], Meghan. . . .

Everybody will be there.

The Obama's First Thanksgiving in the White House!

Obama's Horn of Plenty by William Warren

We're thankful that Americans are standing up to Obama

Obama's Presidential Approval Rating is -15
Rasmussen Reports

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 27% of the nation's voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President.

Forty-two percent (42%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -15.

This is the lowest Approval Index rating yet measured for President Obama.

Fifty-two percent (52%) of Democrats Strongly Approve
while 68% of Republicans Strongly Disapprove.

Among those not affiliated with either major political party, just 16% Strongly Approve and 51% Strongly Disapprove.

Forty-five percent (45%) want U.S. troops home from Afghanistan either right away or within a year.

Forty-three percent (43%) are opposed to such a firm timetable.

Fifty-three percent (53%) of voters worry that the federal government will do too much when it comes to reacting to the nation's financial problems.

That's up seven points since President Obama took office. Support for the health care plan proposed by the President and Congressional Democrats has fallen to a new low of 38%. Sixty percent (60%) of voters believe passage of the bill will lead to higher health care costs.

Inside the numbers: How Obama has fallen By: Byron York

Chief Political Correspondent

11/24/09 10:03 AM EST

We've all seen reports that Barack Obama's job approval rating has recently fallen below 50 percent in the Gallup poll for the first time since the president took office in January. A look inside those numbers -- Gallup publishes a weekly breakdown of its results by demographic groups -- shows that there are a lot of other firsts in the polling:

Among age groups: For the first time in the White House, Obama is below 50 percent with every age group of Americans except those between 18 and 29. He's at 48 percent with people in the 30-49 range; 46 percent with people in the 50-64 range; and 42 percent with people 65 and over. Among those 18-29, he's at 61 percent.

Among racial groups: For the first time in the White House, Obama support among white Americans has fallen below 40 percent. He's at 39 percent among whites; 91 percent among blacks, and 70 percent among Hispanics.

Among income groups: For the first time in the White House, Obama is below 50 percent with every income group except those making less than $2,000 a month. He's at 49 percent among those making $2,000 to $4,999 a month; 44 percent among those making $5,000 to
$7,499 a month; and 48 percent among those making $7,500 and more a month.

Among the bottom income group, those making less than $2,000 a month, Obama's approval rating is 59 percent.

Religious practice: For the first time in the White House, Obama is below 50 percent with everyone who goes to church. He at 41 percent among those who attend weekly and 49 percent among those who attend nearly weekly or monthly. Among those who seldom or never go to church, he is at 55 percent.

McCain "confident" the F-35 will be based in Tucson


Wednesday, November 25, 2009




This is the best time of the year for football fans. Three NFL games on Thanksgiving, College games on Friday & Saturday, then more NFL games Sunday-Monday! The ARIZONA CARDINALS will continue their winning ways on the road in Tennessee.

Thu, Nov 26 2009




Sun, Nov 29 2009









JAC @ SF 49ERS 24 - JAGUARS 21




Mon, Nov 30 2009


McCain criticizes Senate health plan By: Derek Quizon The State Press

Sen. John McCain held a health care town hall meeting with several Valley doctors at North Phoenix Baptist Church on Monday.(Nikolai De Vera The State Press)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., on Monday criticized the health care reform bill that was approved for Senate debate on Saturday, saying it raises government spending to unsustainable levels.


Speaking at a town hall meeting at the North Phoenix Baptist Church to an audience that included doctors and care providers, McCain said he also feared the prospect of health care being rationed by the federal government.

He cited a controversial report released by the Preventive Services Task Force last week that recommends against mammograms for women under 50 as cause for particular concern — a provision in the Senate bill would allow the Secretary of Health and Human Services to modify benefits to follow the recommendations of the task force.

“One of our greatest fears is health care rationing,” McCain said. “We don’t want the government deciding which procedures would be allowed and which wouldn’t.”

The crowd was made up largely of McCain supporters. During the public comments portion of the meeting, Arizona Medical Association President Beth Perdy criticized mandates that would require small businesses to provide their employees with insurance or pay a penalty, a measure she said would hurt her own practice.

“We ran the numbers, and [the bill] would increase our burden 2.5 times,” Perdy said. “We can’t bear that burden.”

The $848 billion reform bill reached an important procedural landmark Saturday, when the Senate voted 60-39 to open up floor debate. The bill includes a public health insurance option and a provision mandating all citizens purchase health insurance.

McCain criticized the Democratic majority as being uncooperative in bipartisan negotiations and ignoring Republican alternatives to the bill that include a provision to give families tax credits for medical care.

“We’ve had alternatives, but we just haven’t been able to get our message through,” he said.

Economics senior Todd Phillips said he feels the fears surrounding government-rationed health care are unfounded because coverage is already rationed by insurance companies.

“Government-rationed health care is really a misnomer because we already have health care rationing now,” Phillips said. “We already have the markets rationing, [and] we already have insurance companies rationing health care.”

McCain, however, argued that the bill goes too far, which has produced a high level of public backlash in the form of demonstrations and declining support demonstrated by the latest Rasmussen Reports poll. A report released Monday said 38 percent of voters approve of the plan, down from 47 percent last week.

“It’s out there,” McCain said. “The question is, will the Democrats understand that the people don’t want this?”


Published on on November 24, 2009

Previously, we reported to you that our national polling showed that the under-30 voters were the strongest supporters of the Obama healthcare initiative. While seniors opposed it by almost 2-to-1 and voters 30-64 opposed it by five- to 10-point margins, the under-30 voters backed his program by 58-30.

So with the funds you have donated, we ran television advertisments and an Internet campaign aimed at young people focused in Arkansas, North Dakota and Maine. The results are incredible!

Now under-30 voters are the strongest opponents of the plan. In the table below, we show you the vote on the Obama plan broken down by age. (We aggregated all three states so we would have
enough interviews to make the age subsets statistically meaningful.)

Support/Oppose Obama plan, combined data for
Arkansas, North Dakota and Maine
Age Support/Oppose Obama Plan
Under 30 25-65
30-49 28-60
50-64 41-50
Over 65 32-55

The polling had predicted that the young would swing sharply and dramatically against the Obama program once they got the key information about it, but we are blown away by these results.These data are from polls the League of American Voters commissioned John Zogby to conduct. Commenting on the results, John said, "These results among 18- to 29-year-olds are striking. It puts in jeopardy the whole theory of the new Democratic majority, because young people are essential to that base.

"Boy, is he ever correct!

At the same time that we are seeing this big shift, the national data on ObamaCare continues to show slippage. Rasmussen shows support down to 38 percent (56 percent opposed) from 45-52 right after the House vote.

Will the Senate listen to public opinion? Damn right they will! At this rate, they would have to face the loss of their entire political base to pass this legislation. Politicians don't work that way! These early procedural votes don't mean much.

As George W. Bush said in the war on terror, "We have to be right all the time. The enemy just has to get it right once." Now it is the opposite. We just need to win one vote to kill the plan. They need to win them all. And at this rate, the plan is in deep, deep trouble.

PLEASE keep the money flowing! We want to run ads along this line in all the swing states (Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Maine, Indiana, Virginia, Connecticut). To do so for the three weeks before the Senate vote will cost us $1.3 million.

to see the ad and to donate to keep it running!

Go to to read all of Dick's columns!

Obama Imitates Carter's Appeasement Diplomacy

Obama's Nice Guy Act Gets Him Nowhere on the World Stage
By Gabor Steingart, Der Spiegel

When he entered office, US President Barack Obama promised to inject US foreign policy with a new tone of respect and diplomacy. His recent trip to Asia, however, showed that it's not working. A shift to Bush-style bluntness may be coming.

There were only a few hours left before Air Force One was scheduled to depart for the flight home.

US President Barack Obama trip through Asia had already seen him travel 24,000 kilometers, sit through a dozen state banquets, climb the Great Wall of China and shake hands with Korean children. It was high time to take stock of the trip.

Barack Obama looked tired on Thursday, as he stood in the Blue House in Seoul, the official residence of the South Korean president. He also seemed irritable and even slightly forlorn.

The CNN cameras had already been set up. But then Obama decided not to play along, and not to answer the question he had already been asked several times on his trip: what did he plan to take home with him?

Instead, he simply said "thank you, guys," and disappeared. David Axelrod, senior advisor to the president, fielded the journalists' questions in the hallway of the Blue House instead, telling them that the public's expectations had been "too high."

The mood in Obama's foreign policy team is tense following an extended Asia trip that produced no palpable results. The "first Pacific president," as Obama called himself, came as a friend and returned as a stranger. The Asians smiled but made no concessions.

Read More and Comment:

Without Their Support By William Warren

Congratulations to BRAD CESMAT - 16th Annual Big Guy Turkey Drive a rousing success!

BRAD CESMAT - 16th Annual Big Guy Turkey Drive a rousing success!


Thank you Arizona! The 16th Annual Big Guy Turkey Drive was a huge success.

The one-day turkey drive traditionally held the Thursday before Thanksgiving generated 1,935 turkeys and $43,161 for The Salvation Army. The Turkey Drive has raised more than $1 million over the years. Every turkey donated goes to The Salvation Army and then right back into the community. In 2008, the one-day drive netted 1,637 turkeys and more than $88,000 for The Salvation Army.

Brad Cesmat, 3TV’s resident Big Guy, and members of the 3TV family thank you for being a part of the 16th Annual Big Guy Turkey Drive!

But it's not too late! You can still go to any Fry’s Food Store and donate to the Big Guy Turkey Drive. Just pick up a $10 scan card at the registers and the money will go right to The Salvation Army.

And of course you can continue to drop off monetary donations at The Salvation Army, 2707 E. Van Buren St., Phoenix. (27th and Van Buren streets)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Obama Debt Now Tops $12 Trillion

National Debt Now Tops $12 Trillion
by Mark Knoller, CBS News

It's another record-high for the U.S. National Debt which today topped the $12-trillion mark. Divided evenly among the U.S. population, it amounts to $38,974.34 for every man, woman and child. Technically, the debt hit the new high yesterday, but it was posted on the Treasury Department website just after 3:00 p.m. ET today.

The exact calculation of the debt is a 16-digit tongue-twister and red-ink tsunami:

This latest milestone in the ever-rising journey of the National Debt comes less than eight months after it hit $11 trillion for the first time. The latest high-point is not unexpected, considering the federal deficit for the just-ended 2009 fiscal year hit an all-time high at $1.42-trillion - more than triple the previous year's record high.

Obama's Chicago Style Payoff

Chicago Style $300 Million Payoff Secures Obamacare Debate
By Dana Milbank, Washington Post

Staffers on Capitol Hill were calling it the Louisiana Purchase. On the eve of Saturday's showdown in the Senate over health-care reform, Democratic leaders still hadn't secured the support of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), one of the 60 votes needed to keep the legislation alive.

The wavering lawmaker was offered a sweetener: at least $100 million in extra federal money for her home state.

And so it came to pass that Landrieu walked onto the Senate floor midafternoon Saturday to announce her aye vote -- and to trumpet the financial "fix" she had arranged for Louisiana.

"I am not going to be defensive," she declared. "And it's not a $100 million fix. It's a $300 million fix." It was an awkward moment (not least because her figure is 20 times the original Louisiana Purchase price). But it was fairly representative of a Senate debate that seems to be scripted in the Southern Gothic style.

The plot was gripping -- the bill survived Saturday's procedural test without a single vote to spare -- and it brought out the rank partisanship, the self-absorption and all the other pathologies of modern politics.

If that wasn't enough of a Tennessee Williams story line, the debate even had, playing the lead role, a Southerner named Blanche with a flair for the dramatic.

Read More and Comment:

Byron York - Why was it so hard for Dems even to start health care debate?

The extraordinary thing about the dramatic events surrounding the health care bill in the Senate is that there was any drama at all. Lawmakers were simply voting to begin debate on the Democratic version of health care reform. Just begin debate -- not end it, and not move on to a final vote.

If Democrats, with a 60-vote majority in the Senate, had not been able to begin debate on the top Democratic policy priority in a generation -- well, that would have been a devastating turn of events, both for the party and for President Obama. And yet just starting debate proved difficult, and only on the last day did the 60th Democratic vote fall in place in favor of beginning the process.

I asked a high-ranking Republican Senate source whether it was really that hard to get the Democratic votes together. Could it have been a media-fed story, with reporters looking to inject some unwarranted drama into the proceedings? No, I was told. "It really was that hard for them to get to 60 just to proceed," the source said. "Very telling."

And judging by the statements of four moderate Democrats -- Lieberman, Lincoln, Landrieu, and Nelson -- it will be far, far harder when the process comes to the really important vote, the one that would bring debate to a close and move on to an up-or-down vote on the Democrats' health care plan. On Saturday, all four of those Democrats publicly threatened to side with Republicans and kill the bill before it can move to a final vote, unless their concerns are met.

ALG Statement: "Public Option" Defies Representative Government

November 23rd, 2009, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson today issued the following statement:

"On Saturday,
the Senate voted 60-39 to proceed to the so-called 'public option,' legislation that will cost more than $2 trillion over ten years when fully implemented, ration health care away from seniors, raise the cost of premiums, drive the American people off of private health options, and bankrupt the Treasury.

"This vote, however, is completely out of step with public sentiment about the legislation.
In a Rasmussen Reports poll conducted Saturday and Sunday, a full 56 percent of likely voters say they oppose this legislation. Only 38 percent support it.

"And yet the Senate is moving rapidly to enact this legislation in direct defiance of the American people's express wishes. They are defying representative government, raising the question: If not the people, who do they represent?"

Health Care Reform - Rasmussen Reports™

Health Care Reform
Support for Health Care Plan Falls to New Low

Monday, November 23, 2009
Just 38% of voters now favor the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That’s the lowest level of support measured for the plan in nearly two dozen tracking polls conducted since June.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 56% now oppose the plan.

Half the survey was conducted before the Senate voted late Saturday to begin debate on its version of the legislation. Support for the plan was slightly lower in the half of the survey conducted after the Senate vote.

Prior to this, support for the plan had never fallen below 41%. Last week, support for the plan was at 47%. Two weeks ago, the effort was supported by 45% of voters.

Intensity remains stronger among those who oppose the push to change the nation’s health care system: 21% Strongly Favor the plan while 43% are Strongly Opposed.

Rasmussen Reports is continuing to track public opinion on the health care plan on a weekly basis. Next week’s Monday morning update will give an indication of whether these numbers reflect a trend of growing opposition or are merely statistical noise.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

Only 16% now believe passage of the plan will lead to lower health care costs. Nearly four times as many (60%) believe the plan will increase health care costs. Most (54%) also believe passage of the plan will hurt the quality of care.

As has been the case for months, Democrats favor the plan while Republicans and voters not affiliated with either major party are opposed. The latest numbers show support from 73% of those in the president’s party. The plan is opposed by 83% of Republicans and 70% of unaffiliated voters.

Other recent polling shows that Democrats consider health care reform to be the top priority for the president. Republicans and unaffiliated voters see deficit reduction as most important.

Among the nation’s senior citizens, 34% favor the health care plan and 60% are opposed. A majority of those under 30 favor the plan, but a majority of all other age groups are opposed (
Premium Members can see full demographic crosstabs).

Support for health care has declined along with President Obama's approval ratings. For the first time in the Obama era, the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Approval Index has been in negative double digits for nine straight days.

Despite the decline in support for the health care plan, 50% still say it is at least somewhat likely to become law this year. That figure includes 17% who say passage is Very Likely.
While Senate Democrats this weekend assembled enough votes to begin debate on the plan, many challenges remain. All Republican Senators and several Democrats, for example, have expressed opposition to the so-called “public option.” Sixty-three percent (63%) of voters nationwide say guaranteeing that no one is forced to change their health insurance coverage is a higher priority than giving consumers the choice of a "public option" government-run health insurance company. Most liberal voters say giving people the choice of a "public option" is more important.

Overall, 46% favor the creation of a government-sponsored non-profit health insurance option that people could choose instead of a private health insurance plan. However, if the plan encouraged companies to drop private health insurance coverage for their workers, support for the public option falls to 29%, and opposition rises to 58%.

As Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, wrote in the Wall Street Journal: “The most important fundamental is that 68% of American voters have health insurance coverage they rate good or excellent. … Most of these voters approach the health care reform debate fearing that they have more to lose than to gain.”

Other challenging issues in the Senate debate include abortion and illegal immigration. Ever since the House's passage of the Stupak Amendment which says the "public option" would not cover elective abortions and that recipients of federal insurance subsidies could not use them to buy abortion coverage, the divide among Democrats has been visible.

Earlier polling showed that 48% nationwide favored the abortion ban, but most supporters of health care reform didn’t want to address the issue. Just 13% of all voters wanted abortion coverage mandated in the legislation.