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The politics of pre-existing conditions

People really like the parts of the Affordable Care Act the Trump administration is trying to get rid of, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation's latest tracking poll.

Data: Kaiser Family Foundation Health Tracking Poll; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

By the numbers: Overwhelming majorities said it's important to keep the ACA's protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Even 58% of Republicans agreed with that sentiment, despite a stark partisan divide on almost every other health care issue. A majority — 66% of registered voters — said preserving those policies is one of the most important issues in the midterms.

Health care is a big issue for Democrats. Once again, health care was at the top of the list of voters' biggest concerns — largely because of Democrats. It's their No. 1 issue, while Republican voters said the economy and immigration were more important.

And Democratic candidates know it. Health care was already the focal point in Democrats' midterm messaging, even before the Justice Department renewed the debate over coverage for pre-existing conditions.

  • Liberal advocates released a new ad just this week in Iowa's 1st district — a House battleground — accusing incumbent Rep. Rod Blum of voting "to end affordable coverage for pre-existing conditions."
  • House candidates in Ohio and Michigan are also specifically highlighting pre-existing conditions in their health care ads.