Sarah Palin vindicated again; Americans reject Obamacare death panels
| Trump 2016 election win tied to fears about Obamacare, rising death rates, says university study
NEWSWEEK – Voters worried about their health and who were confronted with high mortality rates in their local county could have helped Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election, according to a study.
Researchers at Columbia University pored over publicly available data on voting patterns in the 2008 and 2016 elections, as well as death rates from the total 3,112 counties in the U.S.
They wanted to find out whether dwindling health prospects in some parts of the country could explain why Donald Trump won the race for the White House …
The researchers measured voters’ health using variables including coverage by health insurance, death rates in a county and so-called “deaths of despair” caused by alcohol, drugs or suicide.
Between 2012 to 2016, the life expectancy in the U.S. declined from 78.9 years to 78.6, partly due to a doubling in “deaths of despair” between 2000 and 2015.
“Based on our data, we can also say that changes in life expectancy were an independent factor in voting choices,” said Dr. Lee Goldman, professor at Columbia University.
Life expectancy is rising in many parts of the U.S., particularly urban areas, but this pattern isn’t mirrored in rural and middle America, Goldman said.
“We shouldn’t underestimate the degree to which some portions of the country have been left behind in terms of their health. And it’s not surprising that health disparities correspond with voting behavior.”