With less than a fortnight left before the election, the presidential polls lead almost every news cycle now.
This morning’s numbers from GfK and the Associated Press show Gov. Mitt Romney cutting into the president’s lead among female voters (with Obama doing likewise among Romney’s advantage among men).
But another GfK poll—conducted with Research Now—also dropped today, and it shows a clear divide among benefits managers in Red and Blue states.
Overall, according to "How American Businesses Are Preparing for the Implementation of Healthcare Reform,” benefits managers in Red states are more likely than their Blue state counterparts to say the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will add to their companies’ costs. They’re also quick to point out that they anticipate post-election benefits plan changes as a result of it.
“These results have huge implications for the strategies that health insurance companies will use in pursuing business in different regions of the country,” Tim Nanneman, director of health insurance research at GfK, said in a press release announcing the survey results. "Ironically, the movement away from the traditional model of employer-sponsored health benefits, and toward the use of health insurance exchanges, may happen most quickly in the areas of the country that are most opposed to healthcare reform.”
By the numbers, nearly 60 percent of Red state benefits managers said health costs incurred by their companies will ramp up at a faster clip than if PPACA hadn’t passed. That’s compared to 46 percent in Blue states and 58 percent in so-called swing states.
In addition, 37 percent of Red state benefit managers project their companies will have increased their use of defined contribution models three years or more down the road. Only 22 percent of Blue State managers expect a similar trend.