New UnidosUS Health Poll Finds Almost Nine in 10 Latinos Are Worried the Supreme Court Will Strike Down the Affordable Care Act

Poll shows the stakes of the Supreme Court nomination and failure to pass inclusive pandemic relief, says UnidosUS CEO and President Janet Murguía

WASHINGTON, DC—On a press call today announcing the release of a new UnidosUS poll on Latino health concerns, UnidosUS President and CEO Janet Murguía, Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) emphasized that Latinos were among the hardest-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and worried that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would be in jeopardy with the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.

The combination of the coronavirus pandemic, a presidential election and a Supreme Court vacancy have left Hispanics fearful and worried for their health and for the future, Murguía and the senators said. According to the poll, more than 60 percent of Latino voters believe the worst of the coronavirus pandemic is yet to come, and the overwhelming majority (89 percent) are concerned about the possibility of the Supreme Court overturning the ACA.

“Inclusive pandemic relief has been stalled since the passage of the HEROES Act in the House of Representatives in May, and it shows in this poll,” said Murguía. “As Latinos cast their ballots in the coming days, COVID-19 response and health care will be top of mind. Those who aspire to public office and don’t take the priorities of Latino voters in our country to heart do so at their own peril.”

“Latinos’ health care is at risk, as millions of families, including children, stand to lose coverage and vital protections if the Trump administration succeeds at overturning the ACA,” said Sen. Schumer. “UnidosUS survey findings confirm a sad reality of fear among Latino families across the nation who face this very real danger, all during a deadly global pandemic and economic crisis that is disproportionally affecting communities of color. While alarming, it is not surprising to see a majority of Latinos concerned about their health care, especially since Latinos have experienced the largest coverage gains under the ACA of any ethnic group. That’s why this week and beyond, Senate Democrats are united in protecting the future of health care. But make no mistake: Senators who vote Judge Barrett to the Supreme Court are also voting to take health care from over five million Latinos in America.”

“The Latino community is currently facing the dual threat of the coronavirus pandemic and losing their access to health care as the Trump administration attempts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act,” said Sen. Van Hollen. “As this poll shows, these issues are weighing heavily on Latino families, who have been disproportionally impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s why we will continue fighting tooth and nail against Amy Coney Barrett’s appointment to the Supreme Court and against this administration’s efforts to strip Americans of affordable care. The stakes could not be higher for the Latino community.”

While Latinos make up 18 percent of the U.S. population, they account for 28.3 percent of COVID-19 cases and 16.4 percent of deaths. Among Latino children it is even worse: according to the CDC, Latino children account for 38.2 percent of cases and 36.7 percent of deaths among children age 5-17. It comes as no surprise then, that health care is at the forefront of Latino voters’ concerns.

Other findings of the poll, which was conducted by Latino Decisions on behalf of UnidosUS (formerly known as National Council of La Raza), the nation’s largest civil rights and advocacy organization, include:

  • 61 percent of Latinos believe the worst of the pandemic is still to come.
  • 83 percent are concerned about losing ACA protections for pre-existing conditions.
  • 89 percent are concerned about the Supreme Court striking down the entire ACA.
  • 85 percent are worried that school re-openings will lead to more children getting sick.
  • 91 percent support funding in a future congressional relief package to make schools safer and mitigate the risk of catching the virus.
  • 95 percent of Latinos recognize the need to practice social distancing, 93 percent support mask wearing and 96 percent support avoiding large crowds.

The poll also found that when it comes to vaccines, 82 percent of Latinos see doctors and health experts as trusted sources of information. Latino voters also expressed overwhelming support (86 percent) for health coverage for all children regardless of citizenship and continued funding for Medicaid (92 percent).

“The Latino electorate is paying attention and we will be using the power of our voice and our vote to shape the future we wish to see,” Murguía added. “We know that when our children are healthy, they are positioned for brighter futures; when our workers are healthy, they have greater economic opportunity; and when the Latino community is healthy, our nation is more prosperous and economically secure.”

The poll, which includes breakouts for Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida and Texas, was conducted on behalf of UnidosUS by Latino Decisions from Oct. 3-10 with 1,304 Latino registered voters. The poll has a margin of error of 2.7 percent. Full results are available here.