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Obama embraces health care law after court ruling

By Julie Pace

Associated Press

Published: Sunday, Aug. 5 2012 8:50 a.m. MDT

For Obama, there's a political risk in fully embracing his health care overhaul because the law remains unpopular with many.

An ABC News/Washington Post poll conducted in early July showed 47 percent of Americans supporting the law and 47 percent opposing it.

Yet the Obama campaign has been heartened by polls suggesting many people are ready to put the health care debate behind them.

For example, 56 percent of those questioned said they wanted to see the law's critics move on to other issues and stop their efforts to block the law from taking effect, according to a poll in early July by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Half of independent voters were among those who wanted to see lawmakers move on to other issues.

"Tens of millions of Americans are already reaping the benefits of health reform, and, now that the court has ruled, want to turn the page from the partisan fights of the last two years over its repeal," said Stephanie Cutter, Obama's deputy campaign manager.

The way Obama and Romney have approached health care following the Supreme Court ruling isn't necessarily trickling down to state and local elections. For some Democrats, particularly those in more moderate or conservative districts, supporting the president's health care overhaul remains a significant electoral liability. For some Republicans, especially those in the House, running to repeal the law can be a guaranteed way to energize supporters.

Associated Press writers Thomas Beaumont in Des Moines, Iowa and Steve Peoples in Washington contributed to this report.

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