Raleigh, N.C. – Over half, 55 percent, of North Carolina voters disagree with Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto of medical malpractice reform legislation.
Recently the state legislature passed Medical Malpractice reform legislation that capped the amount of “pain and suffering” damages that could be awarded in a medical malpractice lawsuit, while still allowing economic damages, future medical care and personal expenses to be awarded in the full amount. Fifty-five percent of voters polled said they disagree with Perdue’s veto of the legislation, 34 percent agree with it and 10 percent said they do not know or have no opinion.
Voters age 18-25 most disagree with Perdue’s veto (61 percent) along with 26-40 year olds (60 percent). The gap somewhat narrows among the key 66+ demographic to a 48 percent to 35 percent margin. Democratic voter opinion is equally split at 45 percent while Republican (70 percent) and unaffiliated voters (57 percent) overall oppose the governor’s veto.
“The state senate passed an override of the Medical Malpractice reform with a bipartisan vote, showing that this is not a partisan issue, but a needed reform,” said Civitas Institute President Francis De Luca.
Civitas polling has shown consistent support for medical malpractice reform in North Carolina. As state legislators prepare to reexamine the legislation, 52 percent of voters say they would be more likely to vote for a legislator who votes to override this veto. Conversely, 32 percent said they would be less likely to vote for a legislator who does so, seven percent said it would make no difference and nine percent said they do not know.
“As the state House takes up an override vote they should be thinking not only of voters wishes, but more importantly the benefits this bill will bring users of health care services in North Carolina, especially those high risk services that are now in scarce supply in some areas,” added De Luca.
The Civitas Poll is the only regular live-caller poll of critical issues facing North Carolina. For more information on Civitas polling see http://www.nccivitas.org/category/poll/.
Full Text of Questions:
“Recently the state legislature passed the Medical Malpractice reform legislation that capped the amount of “pain and suffering” damages that could be awarded in a medical malpractice lawsuit, while still allowing economic damages, future medical care and personal expenses to be awarded in the full amount. Supporters say this bill will lower health care costs and increase the number of doctors practicing in high risk areas such as delivering babies. Opponents say limiting the amount of non-economic damages is unfair and the amount that is given should be left up to juries. Governor Perdue vetoed this bill. Do you agree or disagree with Governor Perdue’s veto of the medical malpractice reform legislation?”
Total Agree – 34%
Total Disagree – 55%
Strongly Agree – 21%
Somewhat Agree – 13%
Somewhat Disagree – 22%
Strongly Disagree – 33%
Don’t Know/No Opinion – 10%
“Would you be more or less likely to vote for a legislator who voted to override or overturn this veto?”
Total More Likely – 52%
Total Less Likely – 32%
Much More Likely – 29%
Somewhat More Likely – 23%
Somewhat Less Likely – 15%
Much Less Likely – 17%
No Difference – 7%
Don’t Know/Refused – 9%
Click here for full results and crosstabs.
This poll of 600 registered general election voters in North Carolina was conducted July 12-13, 2011 by National Research, Inc. of Holmdel, NJ. All respondents were part of a fully representative sample of registered voters in North Carolina. For purposes of this study, voters interviewed had to have voted in at least one of the past three general elections (2006, 2008, 2010) or be newly registered to vote since November 2, 2010.
The confidence interval associated with a sample of this size is such that: 95 percent of the time, results from 600 interviews (registered voters) will be within +-4% of the “True Values.” True Values refer to the results obtained if it were possible to interview every person in North Carolina who had voted in at least one of the past three general elections or is newly registered since November 2, 2010.