A new survey finds that physicians prefer Mitt Romney to Barack Obama in the presidential race, 55%-36%. Jackson & Coker, a division of Jackson Healthcare, the third largest healthcare staffing company in the country, conducted the study.
The study featured 3,660 participants from 50 states in a self-selected online survey. Physicians identified themselves as 24% Democrat, 35% Republican, 26% Independent, 6% Libertarian, and 7% Unaffiliated. Of those surveyed, 72% were male and 28% were female. The margin of error for the survey, at the 95% confidence level, is 1.6%.
Regarding the survey results, Sandy Garrett, president of Jackson & Coker, said, “Doctors are highly motivated this year to have their voice heard, particularly after passage of the Affordable Care Act. No doubt, the health care law has stirred many passions in the medical community.”
Of the physicians who participated in the study, 55% responded that ObamaCare should be repealed and replaced, while 40% said the law should be implemented and improved.
Women physicians were more likely to support President Obama, as well as physicians employed by hospitals and health systems. The latter is a predictable outcome since doctors who either own, or retain ownership in, a practice are essentially small businesses. Hospitals and health systems, on the contrary, will ultimately benefit from ObamaCare.
Specialists, particularly psychiatrists, pediatricians, and behavioral medicine doctors, tended to support President Obama in the study. Anesthesiologists, surgeons, radiologists, and ophthalmologists were more likely to say they would vote for Romney.
Support for the president has declined since 2008, when Obama received 40% of medical doctors’ votes compared to 44% for John McCain. Physician turnout for the 2012 election is expected to surpass that in 2008. Eight percent of those surveyed said they did not vote in 2008, but only one percent said they would not vote this November.
Fifteen percent of doctors surveyed reported they would be switching their vote from Obama in 2008 to Romney in 2012. The top reasons for a switch in vote were ObamaCare, and its failure to address tort reform, leadership style, lack of commitment to campaign promises, and the economy and unemployment in general.