The best poll finding of the day is that 22% of all Americans believe that Obama health care law has already been repealed, and another 26% aren't sure whether it's been repealed or not.
It's worth giving the full question..."As far as you know, which comes closest to describing the current status of the health reform law that was passed last year?" The choices were "It is still the law of the land" and "It has been repealed and is no longer law," with the rest in either "don't know" or refused to answer. Republicans were twice as likely to believe its been repealed than Democrats (30% of GOP, 12% of Dems).
Remember: if you're reading this blog, odds are good that you're at least in the top 10% of all Americans in political knowledge, and more likely you're in the top 1%. And for those of us in that group, it's hard to imagine just how little the median American knows about the day-to-day events that we pay so much attention to. Even when in some sort of abstract way it makes sense for people to know about politics or public affairs -- for example, it makes sense for Medicare recipients to know how ACA affects them -- they just don't. Sometimes that's because people aren't well-educated enough to feel comfortable reading or even watching the news (and the linked polling shows that college grads do much better on this question, although "some college" respondents actually are more likely to believe inaccurately that ACA has been repealed than are those with no college). But often it's because people have other, more immediate things in their lives to attend to, or they pay attention only occasionally, or they have low tolerance for conflict, or they just don't see any connection between things happening in Washington and their lives.
I've said this before...to get a sense of what politics is like for many Americans, I suggest thinking of something that you do encounter in some way all the time, but that you just have zero interest in. Perhaps sports in general -- or, for sports fans, a major sport that you don't pay any attention to. Perhaps it's current pop music, or HBO shows, or celebrities. Me? NASCAR, the NBA, and any games made since Missile Command and Stargate Defender. The idea is that I actually do encounter and, in a way, retain a fair amount of information about those things in the nature of headlines that I see but skip the stories, or references made in other things I do read or watch, or conversations I've had that veer off in that direction. It's not as if I know absolutely nothing. It's just that the stuff I've heard is not organized at all, and I'm sure I've picked up misinformation along the way, since I don't scrutinize any of it.
Anyway, when you're involved in what's happening in Wisconsin, or Libya, or the budget negotiations in Washington, just keep in mind that most people aren't paying any attention at all.