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PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and Their Government

Mark Baldassare | January 2002

Summary

This is the eighth survey in a series of large-scale public opinion polls that will be conducted by PPIC during the 2002 California election cycle. (Fifteen surveys were conducted during the 1998 and 2000 election cycles). The purpose of the surveys is to develop an objective, in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces affecting public policy preferences and elections in California.

Some findings of the current survey:

  • Californians say public schools, the economy, and the electricity situation are the most important issues facing the state today.
  • Two months before the March 5th primary, former Los Angeles mayor Richard Riordan holds a sizable lead over his two opponents for the Republican nomination for governor. Among likely GOP primary voters, 41% are inclined to vote for Riordan, 13% for Secretary of State Bill Jones, and 4% for businessman William Simon. Still undecided: 42% of GOP primary voters.
  • In a hypothetical match-up today for the gubernatorial election, Riordan holds a slight edge over Governor Gray Davis among all likely voters (41% to 37%).
  • On a state ballot measure that would ease the restrictions on term limits (Proposition 45), 31% of voters today would vote yes, 61% would vote no.
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