It Looks Like Americans Are Blaming Paul Ryan for the Health Care Debacle
Policy + Politics

It Looks Like Americans Are Blaming Paul Ryan for the Health Care Debacle

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

House Speaker Paul Ryan's approval ratings took a huge hit after the botched effort to repeal and replace Obamacare, according to a survey released Thursday.

The American Health Care Act was pulled from a House vote on Friday — and it appears most GOP voters are laying the blame at Ryan's feet instead of President Donald Trump's.

Related: How Trump and the GOP Are Handing Congress Back to the Democrats

According to the poll from the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, Ryan's approval rating sunk to 21% overall, while 61% disapproved of his performance as speaker. The data prompted PPP to call Ryan "the most unpopular politician in the country."

At the start of Trump's presidency, less than three months ago, Ryan's approval-to-disapproval split stood at 33-43.

Even with Trump voters, Ryan has seen his image crumble. That group supported Ryan with a 52% approval rating and 23% disapproval when Trump took office. It has since cratered to 35% approval and 41% disapproval.

Additionally, according to the PPP poll, 42% of voters said that Ryan was to blame for the AHCA not passing, while just 33% think it was Trump's fault.

Related: Now It’s Democrats’ Turn to Make a Health Care Push: Medicare for All

Even more potentially troubling for Ryan is that his own base, GOP voters, overwhelmingly laid the blame: 54% of GOP respondents suggested he was primarily to blame, compared with 13% who pointed the finger at Trump. Voters also blamed congressional Republicans more than congressional Democrats by a margin of 52% to 31%.

After the AHCA was pulled, Ryan said at a press conference that "Obamacare is the law of the land" and that he was disappointed in the failure to get a vote on the GOP replacement.

"I will not sugarcoat this: This is a disappointing day for us," Ryan said. "Doing big things is hard. All of us, all of us — myself included — we will need time to reflect on this moment and what we could have done to do it better."

Trump, for his part, blamed Democrats and has since lambasted the House Freedom Caucus, a group of conservative GOP members who opposed the bill. Trump also supported Ryan after the AHCA misstep, but last weekend told followers to watch a Fox News show in which host Jeanine Pirro called for Ryan to step down. Ryan said Thursday that Trump apologized to him for tweeting about the show.

The poll was conducted with a nationwide representative sample of 667 voters on March 27 and 28. The margin of error is 3.8 percentage points.

This article originally appeared on Business Insider. Read more from Business Insider.

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