Independent, objective, nonpartisan research
Blog Post · February 7, 2022

Most Californians Favor Newsom’s Budget Proposal

photo - Capitol Building in Sacramento, California

Governor Newsom recently released his $286.4 billion budget proposal for the 2022-23 fiscal year. The proposal is 9% larger than last year’s record state spending plan and includes an anticipated $21 billion discretionary surplus. Despite this windfall, about three in four California adults and likely voters think the state budget situation is a big problem (39% adults, 40% likely voters) or somewhat of a problem (36% adults, 33% likely voters) according to the February PPIC Statewide Survey. Similar shares held this view last January.

With that in mind, what do Californians think of Governor Newsom’s January proposal? After hearing a brief description of the budget, 63% of adults and 60% of likely voters favor the plan (oppose: 28% adults, 33% likely voters).

Approval has a strongly partisan cast: most Democrats (84%) and independents (60%) favor the proposal, while 69% of Republicans oppose it.

However, approval is high across regions and demographics, with majorities voicing support. The plan achieves overwhelming support among Africans Americans (78%), Latinos (77%), those earning less than $40,000 annually (75%), Los Angeles residents (71%), and renters (71%).

As part of his budget, the governor has proposed a $2.7 billion COVID-19 Emergency Response Package, which includes $1.4 billion in immediate funding. This proposal seeks to bolster testing capacity, increase vaccination rates, support frontline workers, and strengthen the health care system. Asked whether they favor this proposal, 73% of adults and 69% of likely voters say yes (oppose: 23% adults, 28% likely voters).

Partisans, again, express contrasting views: solid majorities of Democrats (91%) and independents (61%) are in favor of this proposal, compared to only 40% of Republicans. And again, approval is high across the state and its communities: more than six in ten across regions and among demographic groups favor it. Support is far higher among Latinos (87%), African Americans (83%), and Asian Americans (82%) than it is among whites (61%).

Negotiations over the governor’s proposal are now beginning in the legislature, which must pass a budget by June 15 in order for its members to be paid. PPIC will continue to monitor Californians’ opinions throughout the process as we await a revised May budget plan and as Governor Newsom faces reelection this autumn.


California Legislature coronavirus COVID-19 Gavin Newsom Health & Safety Net Political Landscape state budget Statewide Survey vaccine voters