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Which would you prefer — the current health insurance system in the United States, in which most people get their health insurance from private employers, but some people have no insurance, or a universal health insurance program, in which everyone is covered under a program like Medicare that is run by the government and financed by taxpayers? Which would you prefer? Let us know!

According to a September 2005 Public Policy Institute of California poll, 59% percent of Californians would trade the current health care system for “a universal health insurance program, in which everyone is covered under a program like Medicare that is run by the government and financed by taxpayers.” 63% favor the “U.S. government guaranteeing health insurance for all citizens, even if it means raising taxes.” See page 16 of the report for the poll results.

Californians’ preference with regard to health care coverage is similar to that of adults nationwide (62% for universal health insurance, 32% for the current system), according to a 2003 ABC News/Washington Post poll.

A solid majority of Californians (63%) also favor guaranteeing health insurance coverage for all citizens, even if it means raising taxes. Likely voters strongly support raising taxes for this purpose (61% favor, 36% oppose). A national survey in August 2005 by the Pew Research Center found similar results (64% favor, 30% oppose).

At least six in 10 in all demographic groups favor guaranteeing health insurance for everyone, and there are no differences by income, age or education.