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Healthcare key issue in three swing states, poll finds


By Rich Daly
Posted: August 8, 2012 - 1:00 pm ET
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Healthcare is the second leading issue for voters in three critical swing states, a national polling firm reported Wednesday.

About 20% of voters in Colorado, Virginia and Wisconsin listed healthcare as their most important issue in the upcoming presidential election, while about half of respondents listed the economy as their most important issue, the Quinnipiac University/New York Times/CBS News poll of likely voters found.

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The respondents also narrowly preferred President Barack Obama's approach to healthcare over that of likely Republican nominee Mitt Romney, according to the poll. Specifically, Colorado voters said 51% to 41% that Obama would be better on healthcare; Virginia voters preferred the president's healthcare approach 49% to 42%; and Wisconsin voters said Obama would do better job on healthcare by 49% to 43%.

The poll did not ask the voters for whom healthcare is their leading issue in this election to specify which candidate's approach they prefer, so it is unclear whether Obama or Romney will benefit from the findings. But healthcare voters are likely composed of many supporters and opponents of the 2010 federal healthcare overhaul, said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

“It's a fair bet that given the tightness of the number on that question between the two candidates in the various states that that pretty much reflects the tightness of the view of the healthcare law,” Brown said during a Washington news conference.

Overall, the poll found Romney leading in Colorado and Obama leading in Virginia and Wisconsin.


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