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object(Timber\Post)#3711 (44) { ["ImageClass"]=> string(12) "Timber\Image" ["PostClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Post" ["TermClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Term" ["object_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["custom"]=> array(5) { ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(13) "S_1201MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "323859" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(81166) "PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and Their Government Mark Baldassare Senior Fellow and Survey Director December 2001 Public Policy Institute of California Preface The PPIC Statewide Survey consists of an ongoing series of surveys designed to provide policymakers, the media, and the general public with objective, advocacy-free information on the perceptions, opinions and public policy preferences of residents throughout the state of California. Begun in April 1998, the surveys have generated a database that includes the responses of over 44,000 Californians. This report presents the results of the twenty-second PPIC Statewide Survey. The surveys have included a number of special editions focusing on particular regions and themes: • The Central Valley (November 1999, March 2001) • San Diego County (July 2000) • Orange County (September 2001) • The Environment (June 2000) • Population Growth (May 2001) • Land Use (November 2001) The current survey is the fifth in a new series that will be conducted on a periodic basis throughout the 2002 election cycle. The series will focus on the social, economic, and political trends and public policy preferences underlying ballot choices in statewide races and citizens’ initiatives. This report presents the responses of 2,000 adult residents throughout the state on a wide range of issues: • The California election in 2002, including the Republican gubernatorial primary in March, potential match-ups of major party candidates in the gubernatorial election in November, the current image of the governor, and support for a state proposition on the March ballot that calls for a reform of the state’s legislative term limits law. • California policy issues, including perceptions of the state’s most important problem, trends over time in perceptions of problems and improvements within the state’s public schools, public support for student testing and increasing teachers’ salaries, state spending priorities in light of the budget deficit, and the perceived seriousness of the state’s electricity problems and the issue of terrorism and homeland security. • Political trends, including overall approval ratings of the president and governor, specific ratings of the president’s and governor’s handling of terrorism and security issues, and approval ratings of elected officials in the U.S. Congress and the state legislature. • Social and economic trends, such as perceptions of the state of the state, the state’s economy, consumer confidence, the personal and financial effects of the September 11th terror attacks, and attention to state and national political news. • How growing regions and groups – such as the Central Valley, Latinos, and independent voters – affect overall statewide trends in ballot choices and policy preferences. Copies of earlier survey reports or additional copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). The reports are also posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release California 2002 Election California Policy Issues Political Trends Social and Economic Trends Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 5 11 15 21 23 28 - iii - - iv - Press Release ECONOMY, ELECTRICITY, EDUCATION LOOM LARGE IN 2002 RACES Riordan Leads Democrat Davis, Other Republican Gubernatorial Contenders; State Still Feeling Social, Financial Effects of Terrorist Attacks SAN FRANCISCO, California, December 13, 2001 — California’s three E’s – the economy, electricity, and education – are dominating the minds of state residents as they head into the 2002 elections, while the aftermath of September 11 continues to transform their lives, according to a new survey by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). The result is an interesting recipe for a campaign year: economic uncertainty – usually a worry for incumbents – mixed with patriotic support for elected representatives. Today, Californians name the economy (15%), the electricity crisis (14%), and education (12%) as the most important issues facing the state. Terrorism and security issues are mentioned by 6 percent of residents, falling from 14 percent in October. Fifty-six percent of residents now say they expect the state to face bad times financially in the next year, and only 21 percent say they are financially better off today than they were one year ago, compared to 42 percent in a September 2000 survey. San Francisco Bay area residents are the most likely to say they are financially worse off (31%), while Central Valley residents are the least likely to say they are worse off (18%), a reversal of last year’s findings. And while there has been little increase overall since 1998 in the number of Californians who say they are concerned that someone in their family will lose their job in the next year, Latinos (50%) are twice as likely today as non-Hispanic whites (25%) to be concerned about job losses. Despite their economic woes, Californians remain optimistic: As in national surveys conducted after September 11, residents are more likely now (58%) than they were this summer (44%) to say that the state is headed in the right direction. Further, 41 percent believe they will be better off financially a year from now, compared to just 9 percent who expect to be worse off. Such optimism continues to benefit elected officials: Support for President George W. Bush remains extremely high in California, with 79 percent saying they approve of the way he is performing his duties overall and 85 percent saying they support his handling of terrorism and security issues. Fifty-nine percent of Californians also rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress as excellent (13%) or good (46%), compared to 38 percent just one year ago; and 52 percent give their own representative an excellent or good rating. Support for Governor Gray Davis also remains higher than it was in the months before September 11, with 51 percent of residents saying they approve of the way he is handling his job and 66 percent supporting his handling of terrorism and security issues. Interestingly, the state legislature has not seen a similar boost in ratings: 53 percent of Californians approve of the job the legislature is doing at this time, down from 56 percent in September 2000. And 61 percent say they approve of their local state legislators’ performance. Close Races for Governor, Term Limits Initiative Three 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, 37 percent are inclined to vote for Riordan, 13 percent for Secretary of State Bill Jones, and 5 percent for businessman William Simon. However, the outcome of the primary race is far from settled: 45 percent of GOP primary voters say they are undecided. Independent voters – who under new open primary rules can choose from Republican or Democratic ballots – are more likely to say they will vote in the Republican primary rather than in the Democratic primary. -v- Press Release The ratings boost Davis has received since September 11 has failed to give him an edge over Republican gubernatorial challenger Richard Riordan: In potential match-ups, Riordan holds a slight lead over Davis among likely voters (44% to 40%), with GOP voters more loyal to Riordan (76%) than Democrats are to Davis (64%). There are also interesting trends in the state’s Democratic strongholds: Davis has a 20-point lead in the San Francisco Bay area, while the two candidates are virtually tied in Los Angeles County. Davis currently leads in potential contests with Jones (45% to 35%) and Simon (46% to 31%). “Davis falls short of majority support for his reelection bid in part because voters appear to have a split image of the governor, liking him but not his policies,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. Indeed, more than half of likely voters (58%) say they like Davis as a person, but almost as many (55%) do not like his policies. In all, only one in three voters say they like Davis and like his policies, while nearly an equal number say they dislike both Davis and his policies. Voters are evenly divided on a state ballot measure that would allow voters to permit their incumbent state legislator to serve a maximum of four years beyond the term limits that are currently allowed: 46 of likely voters would vote yes and 45 percent would vote no. Democrats (52%) are more likely to support the measure and Republicans (53%) are more likely to oppose it. While the number of Californians who describe current term limits as a “good thing” for California has fallen over time – from 65 percent in 1998 to 49 percent today – only 17 percent of voters say that term limits have been a “bad thing” for the state. Electricity, Education Still on Public’s Radar Although predicted disruptions in the state’s electricity supply never materialized, nearly half of all Californians (48%) still consider electricity a “big” problem today, and 33 percent describe the issue as “somewhat” of a problem. However, the number of Californians who say electricity is a big problem is far lower today than it was in May (82%). About two in three Californians express at least some concern that the state’s electricity problems will harm the economy in the next few years, while one in three residents has “a great deal” of concern about economic consequences. But again, the number of residents who express a great deal of concern has fallen sharply since May (62%). And most likely voters (58%) give Governor Davis at least some credit for the fact that California dodged power outages this summer. While the public’s top issue has shifted over the years – from schools to electricity to terrorism and the economy – concern about the quality of K-12 education has remained remarkably consistent. Eight in 10 Californians continue to say that the quality of public schools is at least somewhat of a problem, and about half see the issue as a “big” problem today. Although state government has made improving public education a top priority, Californians are only slightly more likely to believe that the quality of K-12 education has improved rather than worsened in recent years (28% to 24%), and many believe there has been no change whatsoever (40%). However, parents of public school children are more likely than others to say that the quality of education in the public schools has improved in recent years (41% to 23%). Despite recent criticism that K-12 students are now subjected to too much standardized testing, Californians are overwhelmingly in favor of testing for students. Two in three residents say that elementary and middle school students receive either the right amount (33%) or not enough (33%) standardized testing, while 22 percent say there is too much testing at these levels. Only 16 percent of residents think there is too much testing in high schools, while seven in ten think the amount is just right (32%) or not enough (39%). Interestingly, Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to think there is not enough testing at all K-12 levels. September 11: Social and Financial Aftershocks The September 11 tragedies have affected some Californians – especially Latinos – socially, psychologically, and financially. Many residents continue to view terrorism and security concerns in California as a “big” - vi - Press Release problem (31%) or “somewhat” of a problem (42%), and more than one in three residents say they are at least somewhat worried about the possibility that they or someone in their family will be the victim of a terrorist attack. While seven in 10 Californians report feeling more patriotic because of the September 11 tragedies, a majority of Californians today say they have not felt more anxious or depressed (58%), have not spent more time with family and friends (60%), and have not attended religious services more often (74%). Many Californians have answered the national call to give and spend. Fifty-eight percent of residents say they have donated money or volunteered time to charities in the wake of September 11, while 42 percent say they have responded to media campaigns encouraging patriotic spending. One in three Californians say they have noticed a slowdown in economic activity at their business or workplace, while 23 percent say they have postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans. Latinos appear to have felt the effects of terrorism more intensely than non-Hispanic whites. They are far more likely to describe terrorism and security as a big problem (42% to 28%) and to worry about being personally affected by a terrorist attack (58% to 30%). Latinos are also more likely than non-Hispanic whites to report anxiety and depression, increased socializing, and increased spiritual or religious feelings after September 11. And they are more likely to have shopped in an effort to support the economy, experienced a work slowdown, and changed travel plans. Other Key Findings • State Budget Priorities (page 10) When asked to rate the importance of major categories of state spending, given the projected deficit, Californians give a high priority to three out of the four categories mentioned, including spending for education (76%), public health and welfare (53%), and higher education (50%). Spending for corrections (including prisons) is viewed as a low priority (45%) by state residents. • Immigration Attitudes Post 9/11 (page 19) More Californians today believe that immigrants are a benefit (54%) rather than a burden (36%) to the state, similar to one year ago. However, more Californians also believe that legal immigration should be reduced (48%), rather than maintained (34%) or increased (15%). About the Survey The purpose of the PPIC Statewide Survey is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces affecting California elections and public policy preferences. PPIC will conduct large-scale public opinion surveys on a regular basis leading up to the November 2002 election. Findings of the current survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,000 California adult residents interviewed from November 26 to December 4, 2001. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for the 1503 registered voters is +/- 2.5% and for the 953 likely voters is +/- 3.5%. For more information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow and program director at PPIC, where he holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder and director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has conducted since 1998. Dr. Baldassare is the author of numerous books, including California in the New Millennium: The Changing Social and Political Landscape (University of California Press, 2000). PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to objective, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report will appear on PPIC’s website (www. ppic.org) on December 13. - vii - Percent 100 80 60 40 20 0 Approve Disapprove Don't know Approval Rating of Governor Davis Percent 50 40 30 20 10 0 Riordan Jones Simon Don't know If the Republican primary election for governor were held today and these were the candidates, who would you vote for? Yes No Don't know 9% 45% 46% If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 45, which eases the restrictions on term limits? Percent 100 80 60 40 20 0 Approve Disapprove Don't know Approval Rating of President Bush Davis Riordan Don't know 16% 40% 44% If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election, would you vote for …? Percent 60 40 20 0 Good Times Bad Times Don't know Do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? California 2002 Election Republican Primary for Governor Three months before the March 5th primary, Richard Riordan holds a sizable lead over the other two contenders for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. Among those likely to vote in the GOP primary, 37 percent opt for Riordan, 13 percent for Bill Jones, and 5 percent for William Simon. Although Riordan now has a 24-point lead over his closest rival in the primary, the outcome is far from settled: 45 percent of likely voters in the GOP primary currently plan to vote for someone other than the three major candidates or are undecided. Among likely voters in the GOP primary, Riordan has more support among men than women (45% to 26%), largely because women are more likely than men to be undecided (45% to 29%). Riordan's support also increases with the age and income of likely voters. He has a substantial lead over the other two candidates in every region except the Central Valley, where he trails Jones (23% to 27%). His strength is greatest in Los Angeles County (52%) and the rest of Southern California (41%). The new “open” primary rules allow independent (i.e., decline to state) voters to choose between Republican and Democratic ballots in the primary. At this stage, nearly all of Riordan’s support comes from Republican voters in the GOP primary, since most of those planning to vote in the GOP primary are Republicans (93%). Only one in four independent voters say they will vote in the GOP primary, while two in three are currently uncommitted. The fact that independents account for one in seven registered voters in the state adds a wildcard to the GOP gubernatorial primary race. "If the Republican primary election for governor were held today, and these were the candidates, who would you vote for?" Richard Riordan Bill Jones William Simon Other/Don’t know GOP Primary (Likely Voters) 37% 13 5 45 "Do you plan to vote in the Republican primary, the Democratic primary, or neither?" Republican Democrat Neither Don’t know Independents (Likely Voters) 23% 11 40 26 -1- California 2002 Election Leading Candidates in Governor’s Race Governor Davis is currently in a tight contest with Riordan for the 2002 governor’s race. When asked about potential matchups, 40 percent support Davis and 44 percent support Riordan, while 16 percent are undecided among likely voters. The governor leads a hypothetical contest with Jones by a 10-point margin and one with Simon by a 15-point margin, with about one in five voters undecided in each case. In a Davis-Riordan match-up, GOP voters are currently more loyal to Riordan (76%) than Democrats are to Davis (64%). Although independents are divided between the two, 30 percent of that group are undecided. There are interesting trends in the state’s Democratic strongholds: Davis has a 20-point lead over Riordan in the San Francisco Bay area, while the two are virtually tied in Los Angeles. Riordan has a large lead over Davis in the Central Valley and the rest of Southern California. Among Latino voters, Davis draws a majority in all three potential match-ups, although 35 percent of Latinos currently support Riordan. Non-Hispanic whites strongly back Riordan over Davis (48% to 35%), are evenly divided in a Davis-Jones contest (40% each), and give Davis a slight edge over Simon (40% to 36%). Despite the recent "gender gap" in California—women giving stronger support to Democratic candidates in state races—women show only a slight preference for Davis over Riordan (44% to 39%). However, they strongly support Davis over Jones (47% to 30%) and Davis over Simon (49% to 27%). Men strongly favor Riordan over Davis (50% to 34%), while slightly favoring Davis in contests with Jones (42% to 38%) and Simon (42% to 35%). "If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election, would you vote for …" (1) (2) (3) Likely Voters Likely Voters Likely Voters Gray Davis Richard Riordan Other/Don't know 40% 44 16 Gray Davis Bill Jones Other/Don't know 45% 35 20 Gray Davis William E. Simon Other/Don’t know 46% 31 23 Likely Voters Gray Davis (1) Richard Riordan Other/Don't know Gray Davis (2) Bill Jones Other/Don't know Gray Davis (3) William E. Simon Other/Don’t know Dem 64% 23 13 73% 10 17 73% 8 19 Party Rep 11% 76 13 14% 71 15 15% 65 20 Other Voters 35% 35 30 39% 24 37 40% 22 38 Central Valley 37% 49 14 39% 47 14 39% 44 17 Region SF Bay Area 49% 29 22 49% 25 26 50% 25 25 Los Angeles 43% 46 11 55% 26 19 56% 21 23 Other Southern California 30% 54 16 36% 45 19 38% 40 22 Latino 57% 35 8 66% 23 11 70% 18 12 -2- California 2002 Election Image of Governor Davis One reason why Governor Davis falls short of majority support for reelection may be the voters' split image of their governor: 58 percent say they like him, but 55 percent don't like his policies. In all, only 33 percent of voters say they like him and like his policies. A nearly equal number say they dislike both. There are strong partisan differences: Most Democrats like Davis (75%) and like his policies (59%), while most Republicans dislike Davis (56%) and dislike his policies (79%). Independent voters are more ambivalent, with about half saying they like Davis (54%) but dislike his policies (55%). Most voters (58%) give Davis at least some credit for the fact that California averted a serious electricity crisis. However, only 25 percent give the Governor a lot of credit for his efforts and 40 percent give him little or no credit for averting rolling blackouts and power outages. Again, there are strong partisan differences: 71 percent of Democrats and 53 percent of independent voters give Davis at least some credit for the lack of summer problems, while 53 percent of Republicans give him little or none. "Which of these statements is closest to your view of Governor Gray Davis?" Likely Voters All Likely Voters I like Davis and I like his policies I like Davis but I dislike his policies I dislike Davis but I like his policies I dislike Davis and I dislike his policies Don't know 33% 25 7 30 5 Democrat 52% 23 7 13 5 Party Republican 11% 28 5 51 5 Other 29% 25 11 30 5 Latino 47% 29 6 16 2 "How much credit do you think that Governor Gray Davis deserves for the fact that California did not have major problems with rolling blackouts and power outages this summer– a lot, only some, very little, or none?" Likely Voters A lot Some Very little None Don't know All Likely Voters 25% 33 21 19 2 Democrat 33% 38 16 10 3 Party Republican 17% 29 25 28 1 Other 21% 32 24 21 2 Latino 26% 42 17 14 1 -3- California 2002 Election Legislative Term Limits Initiative Voters are evenly divided on Proposition 45, which would allow voters to permit their incumbent legislator to serve a maximum of four years beyond the legislative term limits currently in effect: 46 percent would vote yes and 45 percent would vote no (note: the ballot label was still subject to change when this survey was conducted, so the wording of the proposition could change). Democrats favor and Republicans oppose Proposition 45 by a similar margin, while independent voters are more likely to vote no than yes (49% to 42%). The initiative has the greatest support in Los Angeles, but a plurality of San Francisco Bay area voters and a majority of Central Valley voters oppose Proposition 45. A slim majority of Latinos support this measure, while non-Hispanic whites are divided (45% to 47%). There is no apparent groundswell of support for reforming the term limits law: Only 17 percent of voters believe the term-limit restrictions have been a “bad thing” for California, while 49 percent think term limits have been a good thing. Nevertheless, enthusiasm for term limits appears to have declined over time: In a PPIC Statewide Survey in October 1998, 65 percent described term limits as a good thing, compared with the 49 percent today. "Proposition 45 on the March 2002 Ballot, the 'Legislative Term Limits, Local Voter Petitions' initiative, allows registered voters in assembly or state senate districts to submit petition signatures to permit their incumbent state legislator to run for re-election and serve an additional four-years maximum, if a majority of voters approves. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 45?" Yes No Don't know Likely Voters 46% 45 9 Yes No Don't know Dem 52% 38 10 Party Rep 39% 53 8 Other Voters 42% 49 9 Likely Voters Central Valley 41% 53 6 Region SF Bay Area 39% 49 12 Los Angeles 49% 42 9 Other Southern California 46% 45 9 Latino 52% 36 12 "The California legislature has operated under term limits since 1990. Overall, do you think that term limits have been a good thing or a bad thing for California, or do they make no difference?" Good thing Bad thing No difference Don't know Likely Voters 49% 17 30 4 -4- California Policy Issues Most Important Problem What is the most important issue facing the state today? Californians are about equally likely to cite jobs and the economy (15%), electricity problems (14%), and the public schools (12%). No other single issue is mentioned by more than one in 10 residents. The percentage mentioning these three issues has changed little since the PPIC Statewide Survey in October 2001. However, the percentage citing terrorism and security as the biggest issue has declined by 8 points (14% to 6%), after a month of warnings of possible terrorist attacks but no incidents in the state. The San Francisco Bay area now leads all other major regions in identifying jobs and the economy as the top state issue. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to list jobs and the economy (19% to 12%) and terrorism and security issues (15% to 3%) as the most important issue facing California today. "Thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing California today?" Jobs, the economy, unemployment Electricity cost, supply, demand Schools, education Terrorism, security, bioterrorism, anthrax Growth, population, overpopulation Immigration, illegal immigration Crime, gangs Environment, pollution Poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare Traffic and transportation Housing costs, housing availability State government, governor, legislature Taxes, cutting taxes State budget, state deficit Water Health care, HMO reform Drugs Race relations, racial and ethnic issues Development, sprawl, land use issues Other Don’t know All Adults 15% 14 12 6 6 4 4 4 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 5 8 Central Valley 11% 16 12 5 6 4 3 4 2 3 1 4 3 3 4 1 0 1 0 6 11 Region SF Bay Area 21% 14 16 3 7 2 2 3 4 4 7 2 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 3 6 Los Angeles 15% 11 13 9 6 6 5 5 2 3 2 2 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 5 7 Other Southern California 13% 15 11 6 6 5 3 3 2 4 2 4 3 2 2 2 1 1 0 7 8 Latino 19% 12 9 15 2 5 5 1 2 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 0 5 14 -5- California Policy Issues Terrorism and Security Issues Although concern over terrorism and security has declined, many people do see it as a problem in California and cause for worry about their personal safety. Three in four residents describe terrorism and security as at least somewhat of a problem, and one in three call it a “big problem.” Terrorism and security are more likely to be rated as a big problem by people in Southern California than by residents of the Central Valley and the San Francisco Bay area, more by Latinos than by non-Hispanic whites (42% to 28%), and more by women than by men. Concerns about this issue tend to decline with age and higher levels of education and annual household income. More than one in three Californians say they are at least somewhat worried about the possibility that they or family members might be the victims of terrorist attacks; 11 percent are “very worried.” Nearly two in three Californians are either not too worried or not at all worried about a terrorist attack directly affecting them or their family. In a national survey by the Gallup Organization in late November, a similar 35 percent of Americans described themselves as very or somewhat worried, while 64 percent said they were not too worried or not at all worried about this possibility. Los Angeles residents are more likely than people in other regions, Latinos (58%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (30%), and women are more likely than men to say that they are either very or somewhat worried about being personally affected by a terrorist attack. Younger, lower income, and less educated residents are also more worried than others about becoming victims of terrorism. "How much of a problem is terrorism and security in California today?" Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 31% 42 24 3 Central Valley 27% 45 26 2 Region SF Bay Area 29% 45 23 3 Los Angeles 35% 41 23 1 Other Southern California 34% 39 25 2 Latino 42% 37 19 2 "How worried are you that you or someone in your family will be the victim of a terrorist attack?" Very worried Somewhat worried Not too worried Not at all worried Don't know All Adults 11% 26 35 27 1 Central Valley 11% 27 32 30 0 Region SF Bay Area 11% 24 39 25 1 Los Angeles 13% 29 34 24 0 Other Southern California 11% 25 33 30 1 Latino 32% 26 27 14 1 -6- California Policy Issues Electricity Although the state did not suffer long-term disruptions of electricity supply, nearly half of Californians (48%) still consider electricity a “big problem” today. Given that one in seven residents rate electricity as the most important problem facing the state, this issue is evidently still very much on the public’s mind. Nevertheless, the percentage ranking electricity as the most important problem has declined dramatically since January (74%), May (82%), and July (78%) of this year. About two in three Californians express at least some concern that the state’s electricity problems will harm the economy in the next few years, while one in three residents has a great deal of concern. Once again, however, the proportion worrying a great deal about this issue is down sharply from January (56%), May (62%), and July (51%). Los Angeles residents – many of whom are served by municipal utilities – are less likely than others to see electricity as a big problem or to worry about negative effects on the state’s economy. There are no differences in responses to either question between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites or Democrats and Republicans, nor are there variations across age, education, gender, or income groups. "How much of a problem is the cost, supply, and demand for electricity in California today?" Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 48% 33 18 1 Central Valley 47% 34 18 1 Region SF Bay Area 53% 27 18 2 Los Angeles 43% 36 20 1 Other Southern California 51% 33 15 1 Latino 47% 37 15 1 "In the next few years, do you think the issue of the cost, supply, and demand for electricity will hurt the California economy or not?" Yes, a great deal Yes, somewhat Yes, don’t know how much No Don't know All Adults 35% 30 5 26 4 Central Valley 33% 34 4 25 4 Region SF Bay Area 34% 30 6 25 5 Los Angeles 32% 27 5 32 4 Other Southern California 42% 28 5 21 4 Latino 35% 32 6 23 4 -7- California Policy Issues Public Schools While the public’s definition of the state’s most important problems has shifted in the past few years—from public schools to electricity and then to the economy—concern about the quality of education in kindergarten through 12th grade public schools has remained remarkably consistent. Eight in 10 Californians continue to say that the quality of public schools is at least somewhat of a problem, and about half see this issue as a big problem today. In assessing schools’ progress to date, Californians are only slightly more likely to think that the quality of K-12 education has improved rather than gotten worse in recent years (28% to 24%), and most (40%) believe it has remained about the same over the past two years. These results are very similar to the findings we reported in January and July 2001. Compared to January 2000, however, Californians today are more likely to say their schools have improved (22% to 28%) or stayed the same (34% to 40%) in recent years and are much less likely to say they have gotten worse (39% to 24%). We repeated questions from earlier surveys to see if there has been any change in support for some key education policy proposals. Most Californians (66%) continue to favor increasing teachers’ pay based on merit to attract and retain teachers, and 55 percent favor giving more resources to school districts with lower test scores than to other school districts. While public support for both these policies is still strong, it has declined: In January 1999, 84 percent favored higher salaries to attract and retain teachers; and in February 2000, 70 percent favored giving more funding to school districts with lower test scores. Parents of public school children are less likely than other adults to rate the quality of education in K-12 public schools as a big problem (44% to 52%), and they are more likely than others to say that the quality of education in the public schools has improved in recent years (41% to 23%). However, they are no different from others in their support for raising teachers’ salaries or providing more funding to local school districts with lower student test scores. How much of a problem is the quality of education in K-12 public schools in California today? Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know In the past two years, do you think the quality of education in California's K-12 public schools has improved, gotten worse, or stayed the same? Improved Gotten worse Stayed the same Don't know All Adults May 98 Jan 00 Jan 01 Jul 01 Dec 01 46% 33 14 7 53% 30 13 4 52% 32 10 6 49% 30 12 9 51% 32 13 4 – 22% 31% 25% 28% – 39 22 24 24 – 34 39 40 40 – 5 8 11 8 -8- California Policy Issues Public School Reforms: Standardized Testing As part of a package of education reforms, the state has instituted a variety of student achievement tests. Lately, some critics have claimed that students are now being subjected to too much testing. However, we find that Californians are overwhelmingly in favor of standardized testing for students in the state’s elementary, middle, and high schools. Most people think that elementary and middle school students receive either the right amount (33%) or not enough (33%) standardized testing; only 22 percent think there is too much student testing at this level. As for high school, only 16 percent of residents think there is too much standardized testing; seven in 10 think the amount is just right (32%) or not enough (39%). A national survey conducted by Belden Russonello & Stewart in July 2000 also found strong support for standardized tests in elementary and middle schools (12% too much, 50% right amount, 21% not enough) and in high schools (9% too much, 44% right amount, 32% not enough). Compared to the nation, Californians are more likely to say there is both too much and too little standardized testing at all grade levels. Parents of public school children are more likely than other adults to say students receive the right amount of standardized testing in elementary and middle schools (41% to 31%) and high schools (38% to 31%). However, parents of public school children are also more likely than others to think that there is too much testing in elementary and middle schools (27% to 20%) and slightly more likely than others to think there is too much testing in high schools (18% to 14%). Latinos express solid support for student testing. They are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say elementary and middle schools receive the right amount of standardized testing (38% to 32%), and similar numbers in both groups say students receive the right amount of testing in high schools (34% to 33%). Only 14 percent of Latinos think there is too much testing in elementary and middle schools, compared to 25 percent of non-Hispanic whites. Relatively few Latinos or nonHispanic whites say that high school students receive too much standardized testing (12% to 17%). Do you think the amount of standardized testing of elementary and middle school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? Too much Right amount Not enough Don’t know Do you think the amount of standardized testing of high school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? Too much Right amount Not enough Don’t know All Adults 22% 33 33 12 16% 32 39 13 Central Valley 23% 37 31 9 14% 38 38 10 -9- Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 23% 31 32 14 20% 32 34 14 21% 33 35 11 14% 38 40 8 17% 34 35 14 16% 29 42 13 16% 30 40 14 12% 34 45 9 California Policy Issues State Budget Priorities When asked to rate the importance of major categories of state spending, given the large budget deficit expected next year, Californians give a high priority to three of the four categories mentioned. Most (76%) say spending for K-12 public schools should be a high priority; 53 percent also assign a high priority to public health and welfare programs and 50 percent to public colleges and universities. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say that K-12 education (81% to 74%), higher education (64% to 44%), and public health and welfare (56% to 51%) should be high priorities for the state. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to describe these three categories as high priorities for state spending. Only corrections and prisons are seen as a low priority issue (45%) – fewer than one in four Californians consider this a high priority for state funds. While most Californians consider education a high priority for state funding, the number giving it this rating has dropped since a 1998 PPIC Statewide Survey. Seventy-six percent of residents today rate K-12 education as a high priority, compared to 85 percent in 1998; 50 percent rate colleges and universities as a high priority, down from 58 percent in 1998. Levels of support are down slightly for health and welfare (56% to 53%) and corrections (26% to 22%). "On another topic, the state faces up to a 14 billion dollar deficit next year. On a scale of 1 to 5 – with 1 being a very low priority and 5 being a very high priority – what priorities should be given to each of these four major categories of public spending in the state budget?" (below: 1,2 = low; 3 = medium; 4,5 = high) Spending for K-12 public schools? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for public health and welfare? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for public colleges and universities? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for corrections, such as prisons? Low Medium High Don’t know All Adults Central Valley Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 9% 13 76 2 11% 14 74 1 7% 11 80 2 7% 12% 6% 14 12 11 76 74 81 3 22 18% 27 53 2 23% 28 48 1 15% 27 58 0 17% 27 55 1 20% 27 52 1 19% 23 56 2 19% 30 50 1 18% 34 46 2 18% 30 52 0 17% 29 53 1 21% 31 47 1 12% 21 64 3 45% 31 22 2 41% 29 27 3 52% 29 18 1 43% 33 21 3 42% 31 25 2 40% 31 25 4 - 10 - Political Trends Governor’s Ratings A slight majority of Californians (51%) express approval of the overall job that Governor Davis is doing in office. Californians have not changed their opinion of the governor's performance much since the last PPIC Statewide Survey in October, when 54 percent approved of his overall job performance. Democrats (63%) are much more likely than Republicans (29%), and Latinos (63%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (45%), to approve of the job that Davis is doing. Half of the voters outside of the major parties say that the governor is doing a good job overall in office. Support for the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security is much stronger: 66 percent approve of his response and 20 percent disapprove. In October, a similar 62 percent said they approved of the governor’s handling of terrorism and security. Three in four Democrats, a slim majority of Republicans, and two in three other voters approve of the governor’s handling of this issue. Latinos (72%) are more approving than non-Hispanic whites (62%). Forty-nine percent of registered voters approve of Davis’ job performance overall, while 42 percent disapprove. Approval is lower among likely voters: 46 percent of likely voters approve of the governor's overall performance and 48 percent disapprove. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security in California? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Other Voters 51% 37 12 63% 28 9 29% 62 9 52% 37 11 66% 20 14 75% 15 10 52% 31 17 64% 19 17 Not Registered to Vote Latino 60% 20 20 63% 22 15 69% 13 18 72% 16 12 - 11 - Political Trends President’s Ratings Overall support for President George W. Bush is very high in California today: 79 percent approve of the job he is doing in office, while only 18 percent disapprove. This level of support for the president has remained essentially the same since the October survey, when 80 percent approved of his job performance. In a national survey by the Washington Post and ABC News in late November, 89 percent of Americans approved of the president’s performance in office. Although Republicans, at 95 percent, are by far the most supportive, even an impressive seven in ten Democrats and independent voters approve of the job that the president is doing. Bush has even higher ratings from the California public on his handling of terrorism and security, with an 85 percent approval rating. Support for his handling of this issue is consistently high across all partisan categories and demographic groups. There is no difference between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites on either overall approval of the president's performance or specific approval of the way he is handling the issue of terrorism and security. Those who rate terrorism and security as a big problem in California are somewhat more approving than those who do not; however, even among those who are not as concerned about the threat of terrorism, the president has a strong overall approval rating (77%), and an equally impressive rating for his handling of terrorism and security (83%). Do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the issue of terrorism and security? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Other Voters 79% 18 3 70% 27 3 95% 4 1 71% 24 5 85% 13 2 81% 17 2 95% 4 1 79% 19 2 Not Registered to Vote Latino 81% 16 3 81% 16 3 83% 14 3 85% 12 3 - 12 - Political Trends U.S. Congress’ Ratings The higher job performance ratings that the president has received seem to have extended to the U.S. Congress as well. When asked to rate congressional job performance, 59 percent of Californians said the legislative body is doing an excellent or good job. Only 38 percent were of this same mind 14 months ago, just prior to the 2000 election, and the number has never risen above 40 percent in any of the prior PPIC Statewide Surveys. Similarly, individual representatives to the U.S. Congress have reaped the benefits of this surge in public support: 52 percent of California residents give their own representative an excellent or good rating, compared to 44 percent in October 2000 and 46 percent in August 2000. These ratings represent an important change from last year’s surveys: In the past, individual representatives have received higher ratings than Congress as a whole, while today the legislative body as a whole receives higher ratings than individual representatives. Republicans (65%) are more likely than Democrats (57%) to say Congress as a whole is doing an excellent or good job, while independents (49%) seem the least impressed. This difference is consistent with past Statewide Surveys, although the overall level of support is higher today. However, in another break with earlier results, Republicans (60%) are the most content with their own representative, while Democrats (53%) and independents (50%) are less so. In August and October of 2000, it was Democrats who were slightly more likely to approve of their own representative. Latinos are as likely as non-Hispanic whites to feel Congress is doing an excellent or good job, but marginally less likely to feel the same about the performance of their own representative (47% to 55%). Likely voters give ratings similar to those of Californians in general. "How do you rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress at this time – excellent, good, fair, or poor?" Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know Oct 98 5% 34 40 19 2 Dec 98 4% 29 42 22 3 Sep 99 2% 24 48 21 5 All Adults Dec 99 5% 30 44 18 3 Aug 00 4% 34 45 14 3 Oct 00 5% 33 46 13 3 Dec 01 13% 46 31 8 2 "What about the representative to the U.S. House of Representatives from your congressional district: How do you rate his or her performance at this time – excellent, good, fair, or poor?" Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know All Adults Aug 00 7% 39 31 8 15 Oct 00 8% 36 36 7 13 - 13 - Dec 01 10% 42 28 7 13 Political Trends State Legislature’s Ratings The state legislature has not experienced the boost in approval ratings accorded to the Congress, president, and governor: Approval of the state legislature now stands at 53 percent, compared to 56 percent in September 2000 and 58 percent in January 2001. Democrats (61%) are the most likely to approve of the Democrat-controlled legislature, while Republicans are the least likely (42%); ratings of independent voters (55%) lie between the major parties. Latinos (62%) are more satisfied than are non-Hispanic whites (51%) with the performance of the legislature. Since January, the approval rating of the state legislature has fallen by 5 points overall, and it has fallen fairly consistently across all partisan categories: It is down five points among Democrats, six points among Republicans, and four points among independent voters. Californians are more approving of their individual members of the legislature: Sixty-one percent approve and 23 percent disapprove of the legislators who represent their assembly and state senate districts. This is in contrast to attitudes toward the U.S. Congress today, where people are more approving of the institution as a whole than of their individual representatives. However, the higher approval for one’s own state legislators matches the general pattern of U.S. Congress ratings prior to September 11th, when individual representatives had higher ratings than Congress as a whole. There are some partisan differences in attitudes toward individual state legislators, but they are weaker than those for the legislature as a whole: Democrats (68%) are still the most positive, but well over a majority of Republicans (55%) and independent voters (59%) also express approval of their district legislators. Latino ratings of individual legislative representatives are higher than those of non-Hispanic whites, but not by much (67% to 61%). Although likely voters are less approving than all Californians of the legislature as a whole, the difference is not large (50% to 53%) and does not extend to opinions about individual legislators. Party Registration Do you approve or disapprove of the job the California legislature is doing at this time? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the job that the state legislators representing your assembly and state senate districts are doing at this time? Approve Disapprove Don’t know All Adults 53% 29 18 61% 23 16 Democrat 61% 25 14 68% 19 13 Republican 42% 44 14 55% 34 11 Other Voters 55% 28 17 59% 26 15 Not Registered to Vote Latino 56% 18 26 62% 19 19 60% 13 27 67% 17 16 - 14 - Social and Economic Trends Overall Mood Although Californians are more likely to expect that bad rather than good economic times lie ahead, they are more likely to think that the state is going in the right direction rather than the wrong direction. This is the same unusual finding first reported in our PPIC Statewide Survey in October, and it is similar to trends that have been in evidence in national surveys since September 11th. Fifty-six percent of Californians say they expect bad financial times in the next 12 months, representing no significant change since October. A greater percentage of San Francisco Bay Area residents (62%) express this sentiment, but at least half of the residents in all regions expect bad times. Women (63%) are more worried than men (50%) about the state’s economy, and pessimism increases with education; no differences were seen across race, age, or income groups. Fifty-eight percent of California residents believe the state is headed in the right direction, compared to 60 percent in the October survey. Los Angeles residents (64%) are more likely than others to express this positive outlook. The gap between Latinos and non–Hispanic whites concerning the direction of the state is impressive: 68 percent of Latinos believe that California is heading in the right direction, compared to 54 percent of non-Hispanic whites. There are few other demographic differences, although pessimism about California’s future increases slightly with education and age. "Do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times?" Good times Bad times Don't know Sep 99 Dec 99 72% 76% 23 19 55 Feb 00 78% 15 7 All Adults Aug 00 Jan 01 72% 51% 21 38 7 11 May 01 38% 56 6 Jul 01 41% 50 9 Oct 01 32% 59 9 Dec 01 37% 56 7 "Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?" Right direction Wrong direction Don't know Dec 98 63% 28 9 Sep 99 61% 34 5 Dec 99 62% 31 7 All Adults Feb 00 Aug 00 Jan 01 65% 62% 62% 27 30 29 889 May 01 44% 48 8 Jul 01 44% 47 9 Oct 01 60% 29 11 Dec 01 58% 33 9 - 15 - Social and Economic Trends Consumer Confidence Compared to a year ago, a higher percentage of Californians now report being financially worse off (26%) than better off (21%). The current survey findings represent a sharp drop in this measure of consumer confidence over time. Californians today are much less likely to say they are financially better off than they said in September 2000 (42%), September 1999 (36%), and September 1998 (33%). San Francisco Bay area residents are the most likely to say they are financially worse off (31%); Central Valley residents are the least likely to feel this way (18%). A year ago, Central Valley residents were the most likely to say they were financially worse off, and San Francisco Bay area residents the least likely to feel this way. Latinos are as likely as non-Hispanic whites (21% to 22%) to say they are financially better off today. Consumer confidence among Latinos has dropped sharply since January 2001, when this group was more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say they were financially better off (46% to 35%). Although the financial situation among all income groups has deteriorated since January, lower-income Californians have lost ground disproportionately. One in three residents are concerned about themselves or family members losing their jobs in the next year. Interestingly, there has been only a small increase in that percentage since May 1998. San Francisco Bay area residents (21%) are the most likely to say they are very concerned about job loss; Central Valley residents are the least likely (10%). Latinos (50%) are twice as likely as non-Hispanic whites (25%) to be concerned about job losses; the percentage of respondents concerned with job loss decreases with higher income and education levels. On the other hand, optimism about the future has not changed: 41 percent of Californians believe that they will be financially better off a year from now, which is similar to results in September 2000 and January 2001. Latinos are more optimistic than non-Hispanic whites about their financial situation in the future (49% to 39%). Better off Worse off Same "Would you say that you and your family are financially better off, worse off, or just about the same as you were a year ago?" All Adults 21% 26 53 Central Valley 22% 18 60 Region SF Bay Area 16% 31 53 Los Angeles 19% 26 55 Other Southern California 25% 25 50 Latino 21% 25 54 "Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not?" (if yes: very or somewhat concerned?) Very concerned Somewhat concerned No Don’t know All Adults 16% 15 68 1 Central Valley 10% 13 76 1 Region SF Bay Area 21% 16 62 1 Los Angeles 17% 16 66 1 Other Southern California 16% 13 69 2 Latino 30% 20 49 1 - 16 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Social and Psychological Effects The terrorism attacks on September 11th have had one significant effect on most Californians’ lives: Seven in 10 residents report feeling more patriotic, and nearly half say they have felt a lot more patriotic. The overwhelming trend of increased patriotism is found across regions and within every major demographic, socioeconomic, and racial and ethnic group. However, Republicans (80%) are more likely than Democrats (69%) or independent voters (58%) to report having more patriotic feelings. While some observers have discussed the possibilities of major changes in lifestyle and attitudes as a result of September 11th, a majority of Californians today say they have not felt more anxious or depressed (58%), nor have they spent more time with family, friends, and neighbors (60%) as a result of the terrorism attacks. Moreover, three in four residents say they have not felt more religious or spiritual, nor have they attended religious services more often since this tragic event. Latinos seem to be more moved by the events of September 11th than non-Hispanic whites: They are more likely to report increased anxiety and depression (50% to 36%), social interaction (58% to 34%), and spiritual and religious feelings (42% to 21%). Women are more likely than men to say they have felt a change in their lives. Younger adults, lower income, and less educated residents are also more likely to report social, psychological, and spiritual changes "We are interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s feelings and everyday lives. In the past few weeks, have you _______________ because of the terrorism attacks?" All Adults Felt more patriotic or done things such as displaying the U.S. flag Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 46% 25 29 Felt more anxious or depressed Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 18% 24 58 Felt more social, or spent more time with family, neighbors, and friends Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 23% 17 60 Felt more spiritual or religious or attended religious services more often Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 14% 12 74 Central Valley 48% 24 28 19% 21 60 21% 16 63 15% 12 73 Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 40% 24 36 15% 31 54 44% 25 31 21% 24 55 50% 27 23 14% 20 66 45% 27 28 24% 26 50 22% 19 59 24% 17 59 22% 16 62 36% 21 43 13% 13 74 14% 14 72 15% 11 74 22% 20 58 - 17 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Financial Effects In California, “when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.” Four in 10 residents report that they have been responsive to the post-September 11th media campaigns encouraging people to support the American economy by shopping. Moreover, almost six out of ten Californians have given either time or money to charitable groups specifically because of the terrorism attacks. Lower percentages report any major effects of the terrorism attacks on their workplace or their travel plans. One in three residents report a slowdown at work, and one in four say they have cancelled or postponed travel plans as a result of the terrorism attacks. How does this view fit with the reports of major reductions in business activity and travel since September 11th? Some observers suggest that the recent economic slowdown is the result of a recession already in progress rather than a consequence of the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to have experienced a work slowdown, to change travel plans, and to shop in an effort to support the American economy. Charitable donations and volunteering tends to increase with income and education level. Shopping to support the economy is more common among younger residents. Those who say they have felt more patriotic since September 11th have also been more likely to shop in an effort to support the American economy. "We are also interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s financial conditions and decisions. In the past few weeks, ____________________________ because of the terrorism attacks?" All Adults Central Valley Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino Have you gone shopping in an effort to support the American economy Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 19% 23 58 16% 25 59 16% 21 63 18% 24 58 22% 22 56 21% 28 51 Have you donated money or volunteered time to charities Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 15% 43 42 13% 47 40 13% 40 47 16% 44 40 16% 42 42 12% 42 46 Has your business or workplace had a slowdown in economic activity Yes, a lot Yes, a little No, Don’t work 18% 15 67 13% 12 75 20% 19 61 22% 17 61 17% 15 68 25% 19 56 Have you postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 12% 11 77 11% 8 81 9% 12 79 14% 12 74 11% 10 79 15% 16 69 - 18 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Effects on Immigration Attitudes Most Californians want immigration levels to be reduced; only one-third want the present level to continue. Nonetheless, Californians are more positive than the rest of the nation toward immigration, as we see when we compare the results of this Statewide Survey with those of a national poll conducted in October 2001: 15 percent of Californians (compared to 8 percent of Americans) believe that immigration levels should be increased; 48 percent of Californians (compared to 58 percent of Americans) believe that immigration levels should be reduced. In California, Latinos are much less likely than non-Hispanic whites to want present immigration levels lowered (30% to 57%). Unfortunately, there are no statewide trends available that would allow us to compare answers to this question before and after September 11th. Californians’ attitudes about immigrants have not changed since September 11th. As in February 2000, more than half of the state's residents today see immigrants as a benefit to California’s economy, while about one in three see them as a fiscal burden for the state government. Today, three out of four Latinos believe that immigrants are a benefit to California, while non-Hispanic whites are split equally on the question of whether immigrants represent more of a benefit to the economy (46%) or a burden to public services (44%). More Democrats (59%) and independents (55%) than Republicans (40%) think immigrants are a benefit to the state. A larger percentage of residents in the San Francisco Bay area (64%) than in Los Angeles (53%), other parts of Southern California (52%), or the Central Valley (52%) believe that immigrants are a benefit to California. "In your view, should legal immigration into the United States be kept at its present level, increased, or decreased?" All Adults U.S.* California Present level 30% 34% Increased 8 15 Decreased Don’t know 58 48 43 * Source: CNN/USA Today/Gallup Poll, October 2001 "Which of these two views is closest to yours?" Immigrants today are a benefit to California because of their hard work and job skills Immigrants today are a burden to California because they use public services Don’t know April 98 46% 42 12 All Adults Feb 00 Dec 01 54% 54% 34 36 12 10 - 19 - Social and Economic Trends News Attentiveness Californians have been paying close attention to the aftermath of the September 11th attacks. A remarkable 91 percent have followed the news fairly closely or very closely. More Californians are following this story now than followed the electricity crisis throughout 2001. There are no differences in attentiveness across regions, racial or ethnic groups, or by any other demographic characteristic. A lower percentage of Californians has followed economic news, but the percentage who say they have followed it fairly or very closely (65%) is higher than in July (59%). In the San Francisco Bay area, which has been hard hit by the collapse of the high-tech sector, news about the economy has received closer attention (72%) than in any other area of the state. Latinos (50%) are much less likely than non-Hispanic whites (71%) to have followed economic news. Wealthier, better educated, and older Californians have followed the stock market and economy much more closely than others. Most Californians have not paid close attention to news about the California budget. Despite the tremendous budget shortfall expected, only 44 percent of Californians say they have followed the story fairly or very closely. There are no differences across regions of the state. "Tell me if you followed these news stories very closely, fairly closely, not too closely, or not at all closely ..." Region News about the terrorism attacks on the United States Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely News about the stock market and U.S. economy Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely News about the California state budget Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely All Adults 63% 28 7 2 30% 35 21 14 13% 31 34 22 Central Valley 65% 30 4 1 26% 34 21 19 15% 29 34 22 SF Bay Area 58% 34 7 1 34% 38 17 11 11% 34 34 21 Los Angeles 67% 24 7 2 26% 38 22 14 14% 31 35 20 Other Southern California Latino 63% 27 7 3 60% 27 10 3 33% 32 23 12 24% 26 29 21 13% 29 32 26 19% 29 36 16 - 20 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, with research assistance from Lisa Cole and Eric McGhee. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,000 California adult residents interviewed from November 26 to December 4, 2001. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers, ensuring that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in California were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to five times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Maria Tello translated the survey into Spanish. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of California's adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,000 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. The sampling error for the 1,503 registered voters is +/- 2.5%, for the 953 likely voters is +/-3.5%, and for the 377 GOP primary likely voters is +/- 5%. Sampling error is just one type of error to which surveys are subject. Results may also be affected by factors such as question wording, question order, and survey timing. Throughout the report, we refer to four geographic regions. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba Counties. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, and "Other Southern California" includes the mostly suburban regions of Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Diego Counties. These four regions were chosen for analysis because they are the major population centers of the state, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population; moreover, the growth of the Central Valley and “Other Southern California” regions have given them increasing political significance. We present specific results for Latinos because they account for about 24 percent of the state's adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing voter groups. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. We contrast the opinions of Democrats and Republicans with "other" or “independent” registered voters. This third category includes those who are registered to vote as “decline to state” as well as a fewer number who say they are members of other political parties. In some cases, we compare PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted by CNN/USA Today/Gallup in October 2001, Belden Russonello & Stewart in July 2000, the Washington Post/ABC News Poll in November 2001, and The Gallup Organization in November 2001. We used 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001 PPIC Statewide Surveys to analyze trends over time in California. - 21 - - 22 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT NOVEMBER 26 – DECEMBER 4, 2001 2,000 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 58% right direction 33 wrong direction 9 don’t know 2. Thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing California today? (code, don’t read) 15% jobs, the economy, unemployment 14 electricity cost, supply, demand 12 education 6 terrorism, security, bioterrorism, anthrax 6 growth, population, overpopulation 4 immigration, illegal immigration 4 crime, gangs 4 environment, pollution 3 poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare 3 traffic and transportation 3 housing costs, housing availability 3 state government, governor, legislature 2 taxes, cutting taxes 2 state budget, state deficit 2 water 1 health care, HMO reform 1 drugs 1 race relations, racial and ethnic issues 1 development, sprawl, land use issues 5 other (specify) 8 don't know 3. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? 51% approve 37 disapprove 12 don’t know 4. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security in California? 66% approve 20 disapprove 14 don’t know 5. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the job the California legislature is doing at this time? 53% approve 29 disapprove 18 don’t know 6. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the job that the state legislators representing your assembly and state senate districts are doing at this time? 61% approve 23 disapprove 16 don’t know 7. Turning to economic conditions in California, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 37% good times 56 bad times 7 don’t know On another topic, the state faces up to a 14 billion dollar deficit next year. On a scale of 1 to 5—with 1 being a very low priority and 5 being a very high priority—what priorities should be given to each of these four major categories of public spending in the state budget? (rotate q. 8 to 11) 8. How about spending for kindergarten through 12th grade public schools? 9% low 13 medium 76 high 2 don’t know 9. How about spending for public health and welfare? 18% low 27 medium 53 high 2 don’t know 10. How about spending for public colleges and universities? 19% low 30 medium 50 high 1 don’t know 11. How about spending for corrections, such as prisons? 45% low 31 medium 22 high 2 don’t know - 23 - 12. On another topic, how much of a problem is the quality of education in kindergarten through 12th grade public schools in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 51% big problem 32 somewhat of a problem 13 not much of a problem 4 don't know 13. In the past two years, do you think the quality of education in California’s kindergarten through 12th grade public schools has improved, gotten worse, or stayed the same? 28% improved 24 gotten worse 40 stayed the same 8 don't know 14. Do you think the amount of standardized testing of elementary and middle school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? 22% too much 33 right amount 33 not enough 12 don't know 15. Do you think the amount of standardized testing of high school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? 16% too much 32 right amount 39 not enough 13 don't know How do you feel about the following proposals that have been made to improve K-12 public schools in California? 16. Do you favor or oppose increasing teachers’ pay based on merit—such as how well their students perform on tests—to attract and retain more and better teachers? 66% favor 30 oppose 4 don’t know 17. Do you favor or oppose giving school districts with the lowest student test scores in the state more resources than other school districts? 55% favor 40 oppose 5 don’t know 18. On another topic, how much of a problem is the cost, supply, and demand for electricity in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 48% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 18 not much of a problem 1 don't know 19. In the next few years, do you think the issue of the cost, supply, and demand for electricity will hurt the California economy or not? (If yes: Do you think it will hurt the California economy a great deal or only somewhat?) 35% yes, a great deal 30 yes, only somewhat 5 yes, don’t know 26 no 4 don’t know 20. On another topic, overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president? 79% approve 18 disapprove 3 don’t know 21. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the issue of terrorism and security? 85% approve 13 disapprove 2 don't know 22. Overall, how do you rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress at this time—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 13% excellent 46 good 31 fair 8 poor 2 don't know 23. What about the representative to the U.S. House of Representatives from your congressional district—how do you rate his or her performance at this time—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 10% excellent 42 good 28 fair 7 poor 13 don't know - 24 - 24. On another topic, how much of a problem is terrorism and security in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 31% big problem 42 somewhat of a problem 24 not much of a problem 3 don't know 25. How worried are you that you or someone in your family will be the victim of a terrorist attack—very worried, somewhat worried, not too worried, or not at all worried? 11% very worried 26 somewhat worried 35 not too worried 27 not at all worried 1 don’t know We are interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s feelings and everyday lives. In the past few weeks ... (rotate q. 26 to 29) 26. Have you felt more anxious or depressed because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 18% yes, a lot 24 yes, a little 58 no 31. Has your business or workplace had a slowdown in economic activity because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Has business slowed down a lot or a little?) 18% yes, a lot 15 yes, a little 53 no 14 don’t work/don’t know 32. Have you postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have your travel plans changed a lot or a little?) 12% yes, a lot 11 yes, a little 77 no 33. Have you gone shopping or spent money in other ways in an effort to support the American economy because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have you spent a lot or a little money for this reason?) 19% yes, a lot 23 yes, a little 58 no 34. On another topic, as far as your own situation, would you say that you and your family are financially better off or worse off or just about the same as you were a year ago? 27. Have you felt more spiritual or religious or attended religious services more often because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 21% better off 26 worse off 53 same 14% yes, a lot 12 yes, a little 74 no 35. Looking ahead, do you think that a year from now you and your family will be financially better off or worse off or just about the same as now? 28. Have you felt more social or spent more time with family, neighbors, and friends because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 23% yes, a lot 17 yes, a little 60 no 29. Have you felt more patriotic or done things such as display the U.S. flag because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 46% yes, a lot 25 yes, a little 29 no We are also interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s financial conditions and decisions. In the past few weeks ... (rotate q. 30 to 33) 30. Have you donated money or volunteered time to charities because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have you donated or volunteered a lot or a little?) 15% yes, a lot 43 yes, a little 42 no - 25 - 41% better off 9 worse off 47 same 3 don’t know 36. Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not? (if yes: Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?) 16% yes, very concerned 15 yes, somewhat concerned 68 no 1 don’t know 37. On another topic, in your view, should legal immigration into the United States be kept at its present level, increased, or decreased? 34% present level 15 increased 48 decreased 3 don’t know 38. Which of these two views is closest to yours? (rotate a and b) (a) Immigrants today are a benefit to California because of their hard work and job skills; (b) Immigrants today are a burden to California because they use public services. 54% benefit 36 burden 10 neither, don’t know I will read a list of some recent news stories covered by news organizations. As I read each one, tell me if you followed this news story very closely, fairly closely, not too closely, or not at all closely. (rotate q. 39 to 41) 39. News about the terrorism attacks on the United States. 63% very closely 28 fairly closely 7 not too closely 2 not at all closely 40. News about the California state budget. 13% very closely 31 fairly closely 34 not too closely 22 not at all closely 41. News about the stock market and U.S. economy. 30% very closely 35 fairly closely 21 not too closely 14 not at all closely 42. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent?) 36% yes, Democrat (skip to q. 45) 27 yes, Republican (skip to q. 44) 4 yes, another party (skip to q. 45) 12 yes, independent (ask q. 43) 21 no, not registered (skip to q. 45) [Responses recorded for questions 43-52 are from likely voters only. All other responses are from all adults.] 43. (Independents only) California voters like yourself will be able to choose between voting in the Republican primary and the Democratic primary in March 2002. Do you plan to vote in the Republican primary, the Democratic primary, or neither? 23% Republican primary 11 Democratic primary 40 neither 26 don’t know 44. (GOP primary voters only) If the Republican primary election for governor were held today and these were the candidates, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask “or someone else?”) 37% Richard Riordan 13 Bill Jones 5 William E. Simon 45 other, don’t know If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election ... (rotate q. 45-47) 45. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 45% Gray Davis, a Democrat 35 Bill Jones, a Republican 20 other, don’t know 46. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 40% Gray Davis, a Democrat 44 Richard Riordan, a Republican 16 other, don’t know 47. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 46% Gray Davis, a Democrat 31 William E. Simon, a Republican 23 other, don’t know 48. Which of these statements is closest to your view of Governor Gray Davis? 33% I like Davis and I like his policies 25 I like Davis but I dislike his policies 7 I dislike Davis but I like his policies 30 I dislike Davis and I dislike his policies 5 don't know 49. How much credit do you think that Governor Gray Davis deserves for the fact that California did not have major problems with rolling blackouts and power outages this summer—a lot, only some, very little, or none? 25% a lot 33 some 21 very little 19 none 2 don't know - 26 - 50. Proposition 45 on the March 2002 ballot, the “Legislative Term Limits, Local Voter Petitions” initiative, allows registered voters in assembly or state senate districts to submit petition signatures to permit their incumbent state legislator to run for re-election and serve an additional four years maximum, if a majority of voters approves. This option would only be permitted once per legislator, petitions would be filed before the end of the legislator’s final term, and petition signatures would be subject to specified requirements. This measure would result in unknown, probably minor, costs to local and state government. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on proposition 45? 46% yes 45 no 9 don’t know 51. The “Legislative Term Limits, Local Voters Petition” initiative would change the legislative term limits that became state law when voters passed a citizens’ initiative. Knowing this, would you vote yes or no on this state proposition? 43% yes 45 no 12 don’t know 52. The California legislature has operated under term limits since 1990. Overall, do you think that term limits have been a good thing or a bad thing for California or do they make no difference? 49% good thing 17 bad thing 30 no difference 4 don’t know 53. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 9% very liberal 22 somewhat liberal 33 middle-of-the-road 26 somewhat conservative 10 very conservative 54. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics—a great deal, a fair amount, only a little, or none? 16% great deal 47 fair amount 31 only a little 6 none 55. How often would you say you vote—always, nearly always, part of the time, seldom, or never? 49% always 24 nearly always 10 part of the time 5 seldom 12 never [56-64: demographic questions] - 27 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Angela Blackwell President Policy Link Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Dennis A. Collins President The James Irvine Foundation Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Monica Lozano President and Chief Operating Officer La Opinión Donna Lucas President NCG Porter Novelli Max Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Richard Schlosberg President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center - 28 -" } ["___content":protected]=> string(104) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(113) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/ppic-statewide-survey-californians-and-their-government-december-2001/s_1201mbs/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8155) ["ID"]=> int(8155) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:35:20" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3282) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(9) "S 1201MBS" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(9) "s_1201mbs" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(13) "S_1201MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "323859" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(81166) "PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and Their Government Mark Baldassare Senior Fellow and Survey Director December 2001 Public Policy Institute of California Preface The PPIC Statewide Survey consists of an ongoing series of surveys designed to provide policymakers, the media, and the general public with objective, advocacy-free information on the perceptions, opinions and public policy preferences of residents throughout the state of California. Begun in April 1998, the surveys have generated a database that includes the responses of over 44,000 Californians. This report presents the results of the twenty-second PPIC Statewide Survey. The surveys have included a number of special editions focusing on particular regions and themes: • The Central Valley (November 1999, March 2001) • San Diego County (July 2000) • Orange County (September 2001) • The Environment (June 2000) • Population Growth (May 2001) • Land Use (November 2001) The current survey is the fifth in a new series that will be conducted on a periodic basis throughout the 2002 election cycle. The series will focus on the social, economic, and political trends and public policy preferences underlying ballot choices in statewide races and citizens’ initiatives. This report presents the responses of 2,000 adult residents throughout the state on a wide range of issues: • The California election in 2002, including the Republican gubernatorial primary in March, potential match-ups of major party candidates in the gubernatorial election in November, the current image of the governor, and support for a state proposition on the March ballot that calls for a reform of the state’s legislative term limits law. • California policy issues, including perceptions of the state’s most important problem, trends over time in perceptions of problems and improvements within the state’s public schools, public support for student testing and increasing teachers’ salaries, state spending priorities in light of the budget deficit, and the perceived seriousness of the state’s electricity problems and the issue of terrorism and homeland security. • Political trends, including overall approval ratings of the president and governor, specific ratings of the president’s and governor’s handling of terrorism and security issues, and approval ratings of elected officials in the U.S. Congress and the state legislature. • Social and economic trends, such as perceptions of the state of the state, the state’s economy, consumer confidence, the personal and financial effects of the September 11th terror attacks, and attention to state and national political news. • How growing regions and groups – such as the Central Valley, Latinos, and independent voters – affect overall statewide trends in ballot choices and policy preferences. Copies of earlier survey reports or additional copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). The reports are also posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release California 2002 Election California Policy Issues Political Trends Social and Economic Trends Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 5 11 15 21 23 28 - iii - - iv - Press Release ECONOMY, ELECTRICITY, EDUCATION LOOM LARGE IN 2002 RACES Riordan Leads Democrat Davis, Other Republican Gubernatorial Contenders; State Still Feeling Social, Financial Effects of Terrorist Attacks SAN FRANCISCO, California, December 13, 2001 — California’s three E’s – the economy, electricity, and education – are dominating the minds of state residents as they head into the 2002 elections, while the aftermath of September 11 continues to transform their lives, according to a new survey by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). The result is an interesting recipe for a campaign year: economic uncertainty – usually a worry for incumbents – mixed with patriotic support for elected representatives. Today, Californians name the economy (15%), the electricity crisis (14%), and education (12%) as the most important issues facing the state. Terrorism and security issues are mentioned by 6 percent of residents, falling from 14 percent in October. Fifty-six percent of residents now say they expect the state to face bad times financially in the next year, and only 21 percent say they are financially better off today than they were one year ago, compared to 42 percent in a September 2000 survey. San Francisco Bay area residents are the most likely to say they are financially worse off (31%), while Central Valley residents are the least likely to say they are worse off (18%), a reversal of last year’s findings. And while there has been little increase overall since 1998 in the number of Californians who say they are concerned that someone in their family will lose their job in the next year, Latinos (50%) are twice as likely today as non-Hispanic whites (25%) to be concerned about job losses. Despite their economic woes, Californians remain optimistic: As in national surveys conducted after September 11, residents are more likely now (58%) than they were this summer (44%) to say that the state is headed in the right direction. Further, 41 percent believe they will be better off financially a year from now, compared to just 9 percent who expect to be worse off. Such optimism continues to benefit elected officials: Support for President George W. Bush remains extremely high in California, with 79 percent saying they approve of the way he is performing his duties overall and 85 percent saying they support his handling of terrorism and security issues. Fifty-nine percent of Californians also rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress as excellent (13%) or good (46%), compared to 38 percent just one year ago; and 52 percent give their own representative an excellent or good rating. Support for Governor Gray Davis also remains higher than it was in the months before September 11, with 51 percent of residents saying they approve of the way he is handling his job and 66 percent supporting his handling of terrorism and security issues. Interestingly, the state legislature has not seen a similar boost in ratings: 53 percent of Californians approve of the job the legislature is doing at this time, down from 56 percent in September 2000. And 61 percent say they approve of their local state legislators’ performance. Close Races for Governor, Term Limits Initiative Three 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, 37 percent are inclined to vote for Riordan, 13 percent for Secretary of State Bill Jones, and 5 percent for businessman William Simon. However, the outcome of the primary race is far from settled: 45 percent of GOP primary voters say they are undecided. Independent voters – who under new open primary rules can choose from Republican or Democratic ballots – are more likely to say they will vote in the Republican primary rather than in the Democratic primary. -v- Press Release The ratings boost Davis has received since September 11 has failed to give him an edge over Republican gubernatorial challenger Richard Riordan: In potential match-ups, Riordan holds a slight lead over Davis among likely voters (44% to 40%), with GOP voters more loyal to Riordan (76%) than Democrats are to Davis (64%). There are also interesting trends in the state’s Democratic strongholds: Davis has a 20-point lead in the San Francisco Bay area, while the two candidates are virtually tied in Los Angeles County. Davis currently leads in potential contests with Jones (45% to 35%) and Simon (46% to 31%). “Davis falls short of majority support for his reelection bid in part because voters appear to have a split image of the governor, liking him but not his policies,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. Indeed, more than half of likely voters (58%) say they like Davis as a person, but almost as many (55%) do not like his policies. In all, only one in three voters say they like Davis and like his policies, while nearly an equal number say they dislike both Davis and his policies. Voters are evenly divided on a state ballot measure that would allow voters to permit their incumbent state legislator to serve a maximum of four years beyond the term limits that are currently allowed: 46 of likely voters would vote yes and 45 percent would vote no. Democrats (52%) are more likely to support the measure and Republicans (53%) are more likely to oppose it. While the number of Californians who describe current term limits as a “good thing” for California has fallen over time – from 65 percent in 1998 to 49 percent today – only 17 percent of voters say that term limits have been a “bad thing” for the state. Electricity, Education Still on Public’s Radar Although predicted disruptions in the state’s electricity supply never materialized, nearly half of all Californians (48%) still consider electricity a “big” problem today, and 33 percent describe the issue as “somewhat” of a problem. However, the number of Californians who say electricity is a big problem is far lower today than it was in May (82%). About two in three Californians express at least some concern that the state’s electricity problems will harm the economy in the next few years, while one in three residents has “a great deal” of concern about economic consequences. But again, the number of residents who express a great deal of concern has fallen sharply since May (62%). And most likely voters (58%) give Governor Davis at least some credit for the fact that California dodged power outages this summer. While the public’s top issue has shifted over the years – from schools to electricity to terrorism and the economy – concern about the quality of K-12 education has remained remarkably consistent. Eight in 10 Californians continue to say that the quality of public schools is at least somewhat of a problem, and about half see the issue as a “big” problem today. Although state government has made improving public education a top priority, Californians are only slightly more likely to believe that the quality of K-12 education has improved rather than worsened in recent years (28% to 24%), and many believe there has been no change whatsoever (40%). However, parents of public school children are more likely than others to say that the quality of education in the public schools has improved in recent years (41% to 23%). Despite recent criticism that K-12 students are now subjected to too much standardized testing, Californians are overwhelmingly in favor of testing for students. Two in three residents say that elementary and middle school students receive either the right amount (33%) or not enough (33%) standardized testing, while 22 percent say there is too much testing at these levels. Only 16 percent of residents think there is too much testing in high schools, while seven in ten think the amount is just right (32%) or not enough (39%). Interestingly, Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to think there is not enough testing at all K-12 levels. September 11: Social and Financial Aftershocks The September 11 tragedies have affected some Californians – especially Latinos – socially, psychologically, and financially. Many residents continue to view terrorism and security concerns in California as a “big” - vi - Press Release problem (31%) or “somewhat” of a problem (42%), and more than one in three residents say they are at least somewhat worried about the possibility that they or someone in their family will be the victim of a terrorist attack. While seven in 10 Californians report feeling more patriotic because of the September 11 tragedies, a majority of Californians today say they have not felt more anxious or depressed (58%), have not spent more time with family and friends (60%), and have not attended religious services more often (74%). Many Californians have answered the national call to give and spend. Fifty-eight percent of residents say they have donated money or volunteered time to charities in the wake of September 11, while 42 percent say they have responded to media campaigns encouraging patriotic spending. One in three Californians say they have noticed a slowdown in economic activity at their business or workplace, while 23 percent say they have postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans. Latinos appear to have felt the effects of terrorism more intensely than non-Hispanic whites. They are far more likely to describe terrorism and security as a big problem (42% to 28%) and to worry about being personally affected by a terrorist attack (58% to 30%). Latinos are also more likely than non-Hispanic whites to report anxiety and depression, increased socializing, and increased spiritual or religious feelings after September 11. And they are more likely to have shopped in an effort to support the economy, experienced a work slowdown, and changed travel plans. Other Key Findings • State Budget Priorities (page 10) When asked to rate the importance of major categories of state spending, given the projected deficit, Californians give a high priority to three out of the four categories mentioned, including spending for education (76%), public health and welfare (53%), and higher education (50%). Spending for corrections (including prisons) is viewed as a low priority (45%) by state residents. • Immigration Attitudes Post 9/11 (page 19) More Californians today believe that immigrants are a benefit (54%) rather than a burden (36%) to the state, similar to one year ago. However, more Californians also believe that legal immigration should be reduced (48%), rather than maintained (34%) or increased (15%). About the Survey The purpose of the PPIC Statewide Survey is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces affecting California elections and public policy preferences. PPIC will conduct large-scale public opinion surveys on a regular basis leading up to the November 2002 election. Findings of the current survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,000 California adult residents interviewed from November 26 to December 4, 2001. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for the 1503 registered voters is +/- 2.5% and for the 953 likely voters is +/- 3.5%. For more information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow and program director at PPIC, where he holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder and director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has conducted since 1998. Dr. Baldassare is the author of numerous books, including California in the New Millennium: The Changing Social and Political Landscape (University of California Press, 2000). PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to objective, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report will appear on PPIC’s website (www. ppic.org) on December 13. - vii - Percent 100 80 60 40 20 0 Approve Disapprove Don't know Approval Rating of Governor Davis Percent 50 40 30 20 10 0 Riordan Jones Simon Don't know If the Republican primary election for governor were held today and these were the candidates, who would you vote for? Yes No Don't know 9% 45% 46% If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 45, which eases the restrictions on term limits? Percent 100 80 60 40 20 0 Approve Disapprove Don't know Approval Rating of President Bush Davis Riordan Don't know 16% 40% 44% If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election, would you vote for …? Percent 60 40 20 0 Good Times Bad Times Don't know Do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? California 2002 Election Republican Primary for Governor Three months before the March 5th primary, Richard Riordan holds a sizable lead over the other two contenders for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. Among those likely to vote in the GOP primary, 37 percent opt for Riordan, 13 percent for Bill Jones, and 5 percent for William Simon. Although Riordan now has a 24-point lead over his closest rival in the primary, the outcome is far from settled: 45 percent of likely voters in the GOP primary currently plan to vote for someone other than the three major candidates or are undecided. Among likely voters in the GOP primary, Riordan has more support among men than women (45% to 26%), largely because women are more likely than men to be undecided (45% to 29%). Riordan's support also increases with the age and income of likely voters. He has a substantial lead over the other two candidates in every region except the Central Valley, where he trails Jones (23% to 27%). His strength is greatest in Los Angeles County (52%) and the rest of Southern California (41%). The new “open” primary rules allow independent (i.e., decline to state) voters to choose between Republican and Democratic ballots in the primary. At this stage, nearly all of Riordan’s support comes from Republican voters in the GOP primary, since most of those planning to vote in the GOP primary are Republicans (93%). Only one in four independent voters say they will vote in the GOP primary, while two in three are currently uncommitted. The fact that independents account for one in seven registered voters in the state adds a wildcard to the GOP gubernatorial primary race. "If the Republican primary election for governor were held today, and these were the candidates, who would you vote for?" Richard Riordan Bill Jones William Simon Other/Don’t know GOP Primary (Likely Voters) 37% 13 5 45 "Do you plan to vote in the Republican primary, the Democratic primary, or neither?" Republican Democrat Neither Don’t know Independents (Likely Voters) 23% 11 40 26 -1- California 2002 Election Leading Candidates in Governor’s Race Governor Davis is currently in a tight contest with Riordan for the 2002 governor’s race. When asked about potential matchups, 40 percent support Davis and 44 percent support Riordan, while 16 percent are undecided among likely voters. The governor leads a hypothetical contest with Jones by a 10-point margin and one with Simon by a 15-point margin, with about one in five voters undecided in each case. In a Davis-Riordan match-up, GOP voters are currently more loyal to Riordan (76%) than Democrats are to Davis (64%). Although independents are divided between the two, 30 percent of that group are undecided. There are interesting trends in the state’s Democratic strongholds: Davis has a 20-point lead over Riordan in the San Francisco Bay area, while the two are virtually tied in Los Angeles. Riordan has a large lead over Davis in the Central Valley and the rest of Southern California. Among Latino voters, Davis draws a majority in all three potential match-ups, although 35 percent of Latinos currently support Riordan. Non-Hispanic whites strongly back Riordan over Davis (48% to 35%), are evenly divided in a Davis-Jones contest (40% each), and give Davis a slight edge over Simon (40% to 36%). Despite the recent "gender gap" in California—women giving stronger support to Democratic candidates in state races—women show only a slight preference for Davis over Riordan (44% to 39%). However, they strongly support Davis over Jones (47% to 30%) and Davis over Simon (49% to 27%). Men strongly favor Riordan over Davis (50% to 34%), while slightly favoring Davis in contests with Jones (42% to 38%) and Simon (42% to 35%). "If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election, would you vote for …" (1) (2) (3) Likely Voters Likely Voters Likely Voters Gray Davis Richard Riordan Other/Don't know 40% 44 16 Gray Davis Bill Jones Other/Don't know 45% 35 20 Gray Davis William E. Simon Other/Don’t know 46% 31 23 Likely Voters Gray Davis (1) Richard Riordan Other/Don't know Gray Davis (2) Bill Jones Other/Don't know Gray Davis (3) William E. Simon Other/Don’t know Dem 64% 23 13 73% 10 17 73% 8 19 Party Rep 11% 76 13 14% 71 15 15% 65 20 Other Voters 35% 35 30 39% 24 37 40% 22 38 Central Valley 37% 49 14 39% 47 14 39% 44 17 Region SF Bay Area 49% 29 22 49% 25 26 50% 25 25 Los Angeles 43% 46 11 55% 26 19 56% 21 23 Other Southern California 30% 54 16 36% 45 19 38% 40 22 Latino 57% 35 8 66% 23 11 70% 18 12 -2- California 2002 Election Image of Governor Davis One reason why Governor Davis falls short of majority support for reelection may be the voters' split image of their governor: 58 percent say they like him, but 55 percent don't like his policies. In all, only 33 percent of voters say they like him and like his policies. A nearly equal number say they dislike both. There are strong partisan differences: Most Democrats like Davis (75%) and like his policies (59%), while most Republicans dislike Davis (56%) and dislike his policies (79%). Independent voters are more ambivalent, with about half saying they like Davis (54%) but dislike his policies (55%). Most voters (58%) give Davis at least some credit for the fact that California averted a serious electricity crisis. However, only 25 percent give the Governor a lot of credit for his efforts and 40 percent give him little or no credit for averting rolling blackouts and power outages. Again, there are strong partisan differences: 71 percent of Democrats and 53 percent of independent voters give Davis at least some credit for the lack of summer problems, while 53 percent of Republicans give him little or none. "Which of these statements is closest to your view of Governor Gray Davis?" Likely Voters All Likely Voters I like Davis and I like his policies I like Davis but I dislike his policies I dislike Davis but I like his policies I dislike Davis and I dislike his policies Don't know 33% 25 7 30 5 Democrat 52% 23 7 13 5 Party Republican 11% 28 5 51 5 Other 29% 25 11 30 5 Latino 47% 29 6 16 2 "How much credit do you think that Governor Gray Davis deserves for the fact that California did not have major problems with rolling blackouts and power outages this summer– a lot, only some, very little, or none?" Likely Voters A lot Some Very little None Don't know All Likely Voters 25% 33 21 19 2 Democrat 33% 38 16 10 3 Party Republican 17% 29 25 28 1 Other 21% 32 24 21 2 Latino 26% 42 17 14 1 -3- California 2002 Election Legislative Term Limits Initiative Voters are evenly divided on Proposition 45, which would allow voters to permit their incumbent legislator to serve a maximum of four years beyond the legislative term limits currently in effect: 46 percent would vote yes and 45 percent would vote no (note: the ballot label was still subject to change when this survey was conducted, so the wording of the proposition could change). Democrats favor and Republicans oppose Proposition 45 by a similar margin, while independent voters are more likely to vote no than yes (49% to 42%). The initiative has the greatest support in Los Angeles, but a plurality of San Francisco Bay area voters and a majority of Central Valley voters oppose Proposition 45. A slim majority of Latinos support this measure, while non-Hispanic whites are divided (45% to 47%). There is no apparent groundswell of support for reforming the term limits law: Only 17 percent of voters believe the term-limit restrictions have been a “bad thing” for California, while 49 percent think term limits have been a good thing. Nevertheless, enthusiasm for term limits appears to have declined over time: In a PPIC Statewide Survey in October 1998, 65 percent described term limits as a good thing, compared with the 49 percent today. "Proposition 45 on the March 2002 Ballot, the 'Legislative Term Limits, Local Voter Petitions' initiative, allows registered voters in assembly or state senate districts to submit petition signatures to permit their incumbent state legislator to run for re-election and serve an additional four-years maximum, if a majority of voters approves. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 45?" Yes No Don't know Likely Voters 46% 45 9 Yes No Don't know Dem 52% 38 10 Party Rep 39% 53 8 Other Voters 42% 49 9 Likely Voters Central Valley 41% 53 6 Region SF Bay Area 39% 49 12 Los Angeles 49% 42 9 Other Southern California 46% 45 9 Latino 52% 36 12 "The California legislature has operated under term limits since 1990. Overall, do you think that term limits have been a good thing or a bad thing for California, or do they make no difference?" Good thing Bad thing No difference Don't know Likely Voters 49% 17 30 4 -4- California Policy Issues Most Important Problem What is the most important issue facing the state today? Californians are about equally likely to cite jobs and the economy (15%), electricity problems (14%), and the public schools (12%). No other single issue is mentioned by more than one in 10 residents. The percentage mentioning these three issues has changed little since the PPIC Statewide Survey in October 2001. However, the percentage citing terrorism and security as the biggest issue has declined by 8 points (14% to 6%), after a month of warnings of possible terrorist attacks but no incidents in the state. The San Francisco Bay area now leads all other major regions in identifying jobs and the economy as the top state issue. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to list jobs and the economy (19% to 12%) and terrorism and security issues (15% to 3%) as the most important issue facing California today. "Thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing California today?" Jobs, the economy, unemployment Electricity cost, supply, demand Schools, education Terrorism, security, bioterrorism, anthrax Growth, population, overpopulation Immigration, illegal immigration Crime, gangs Environment, pollution Poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare Traffic and transportation Housing costs, housing availability State government, governor, legislature Taxes, cutting taxes State budget, state deficit Water Health care, HMO reform Drugs Race relations, racial and ethnic issues Development, sprawl, land use issues Other Don’t know All Adults 15% 14 12 6 6 4 4 4 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 5 8 Central Valley 11% 16 12 5 6 4 3 4 2 3 1 4 3 3 4 1 0 1 0 6 11 Region SF Bay Area 21% 14 16 3 7 2 2 3 4 4 7 2 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 3 6 Los Angeles 15% 11 13 9 6 6 5 5 2 3 2 2 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 5 7 Other Southern California 13% 15 11 6 6 5 3 3 2 4 2 4 3 2 2 2 1 1 0 7 8 Latino 19% 12 9 15 2 5 5 1 2 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 0 5 14 -5- California Policy Issues Terrorism and Security Issues Although concern over terrorism and security has declined, many people do see it as a problem in California and cause for worry about their personal safety. Three in four residents describe terrorism and security as at least somewhat of a problem, and one in three call it a “big problem.” Terrorism and security are more likely to be rated as a big problem by people in Southern California than by residents of the Central Valley and the San Francisco Bay area, more by Latinos than by non-Hispanic whites (42% to 28%), and more by women than by men. Concerns about this issue tend to decline with age and higher levels of education and annual household income. More than one in three Californians say they are at least somewhat worried about the possibility that they or family members might be the victims of terrorist attacks; 11 percent are “very worried.” Nearly two in three Californians are either not too worried or not at all worried about a terrorist attack directly affecting them or their family. In a national survey by the Gallup Organization in late November, a similar 35 percent of Americans described themselves as very or somewhat worried, while 64 percent said they were not too worried or not at all worried about this possibility. Los Angeles residents are more likely than people in other regions, Latinos (58%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (30%), and women are more likely than men to say that they are either very or somewhat worried about being personally affected by a terrorist attack. Younger, lower income, and less educated residents are also more worried than others about becoming victims of terrorism. "How much of a problem is terrorism and security in California today?" Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 31% 42 24 3 Central Valley 27% 45 26 2 Region SF Bay Area 29% 45 23 3 Los Angeles 35% 41 23 1 Other Southern California 34% 39 25 2 Latino 42% 37 19 2 "How worried are you that you or someone in your family will be the victim of a terrorist attack?" Very worried Somewhat worried Not too worried Not at all worried Don't know All Adults 11% 26 35 27 1 Central Valley 11% 27 32 30 0 Region SF Bay Area 11% 24 39 25 1 Los Angeles 13% 29 34 24 0 Other Southern California 11% 25 33 30 1 Latino 32% 26 27 14 1 -6- California Policy Issues Electricity Although the state did not suffer long-term disruptions of electricity supply, nearly half of Californians (48%) still consider electricity a “big problem” today. Given that one in seven residents rate electricity as the most important problem facing the state, this issue is evidently still very much on the public’s mind. Nevertheless, the percentage ranking electricity as the most important problem has declined dramatically since January (74%), May (82%), and July (78%) of this year. About two in three Californians express at least some concern that the state’s electricity problems will harm the economy in the next few years, while one in three residents has a great deal of concern. Once again, however, the proportion worrying a great deal about this issue is down sharply from January (56%), May (62%), and July (51%). Los Angeles residents – many of whom are served by municipal utilities – are less likely than others to see electricity as a big problem or to worry about negative effects on the state’s economy. There are no differences in responses to either question between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites or Democrats and Republicans, nor are there variations across age, education, gender, or income groups. "How much of a problem is the cost, supply, and demand for electricity in California today?" Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 48% 33 18 1 Central Valley 47% 34 18 1 Region SF Bay Area 53% 27 18 2 Los Angeles 43% 36 20 1 Other Southern California 51% 33 15 1 Latino 47% 37 15 1 "In the next few years, do you think the issue of the cost, supply, and demand for electricity will hurt the California economy or not?" Yes, a great deal Yes, somewhat Yes, don’t know how much No Don't know All Adults 35% 30 5 26 4 Central Valley 33% 34 4 25 4 Region SF Bay Area 34% 30 6 25 5 Los Angeles 32% 27 5 32 4 Other Southern California 42% 28 5 21 4 Latino 35% 32 6 23 4 -7- California Policy Issues Public Schools While the public’s definition of the state’s most important problems has shifted in the past few years—from public schools to electricity and then to the economy—concern about the quality of education in kindergarten through 12th grade public schools has remained remarkably consistent. Eight in 10 Californians continue to say that the quality of public schools is at least somewhat of a problem, and about half see this issue as a big problem today. In assessing schools’ progress to date, Californians are only slightly more likely to think that the quality of K-12 education has improved rather than gotten worse in recent years (28% to 24%), and most (40%) believe it has remained about the same over the past two years. These results are very similar to the findings we reported in January and July 2001. Compared to January 2000, however, Californians today are more likely to say their schools have improved (22% to 28%) or stayed the same (34% to 40%) in recent years and are much less likely to say they have gotten worse (39% to 24%). We repeated questions from earlier surveys to see if there has been any change in support for some key education policy proposals. Most Californians (66%) continue to favor increasing teachers’ pay based on merit to attract and retain teachers, and 55 percent favor giving more resources to school districts with lower test scores than to other school districts. While public support for both these policies is still strong, it has declined: In January 1999, 84 percent favored higher salaries to attract and retain teachers; and in February 2000, 70 percent favored giving more funding to school districts with lower test scores. Parents of public school children are less likely than other adults to rate the quality of education in K-12 public schools as a big problem (44% to 52%), and they are more likely than others to say that the quality of education in the public schools has improved in recent years (41% to 23%). However, they are no different from others in their support for raising teachers’ salaries or providing more funding to local school districts with lower student test scores. How much of a problem is the quality of education in K-12 public schools in California today? Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know In the past two years, do you think the quality of education in California's K-12 public schools has improved, gotten worse, or stayed the same? Improved Gotten worse Stayed the same Don't know All Adults May 98 Jan 00 Jan 01 Jul 01 Dec 01 46% 33 14 7 53% 30 13 4 52% 32 10 6 49% 30 12 9 51% 32 13 4 – 22% 31% 25% 28% – 39 22 24 24 – 34 39 40 40 – 5 8 11 8 -8- California Policy Issues Public School Reforms: Standardized Testing As part of a package of education reforms, the state has instituted a variety of student achievement tests. Lately, some critics have claimed that students are now being subjected to too much testing. However, we find that Californians are overwhelmingly in favor of standardized testing for students in the state’s elementary, middle, and high schools. Most people think that elementary and middle school students receive either the right amount (33%) or not enough (33%) standardized testing; only 22 percent think there is too much student testing at this level. As for high school, only 16 percent of residents think there is too much standardized testing; seven in 10 think the amount is just right (32%) or not enough (39%). A national survey conducted by Belden Russonello & Stewart in July 2000 also found strong support for standardized tests in elementary and middle schools (12% too much, 50% right amount, 21% not enough) and in high schools (9% too much, 44% right amount, 32% not enough). Compared to the nation, Californians are more likely to say there is both too much and too little standardized testing at all grade levels. Parents of public school children are more likely than other adults to say students receive the right amount of standardized testing in elementary and middle schools (41% to 31%) and high schools (38% to 31%). However, parents of public school children are also more likely than others to think that there is too much testing in elementary and middle schools (27% to 20%) and slightly more likely than others to think there is too much testing in high schools (18% to 14%). Latinos express solid support for student testing. They are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say elementary and middle schools receive the right amount of standardized testing (38% to 32%), and similar numbers in both groups say students receive the right amount of testing in high schools (34% to 33%). Only 14 percent of Latinos think there is too much testing in elementary and middle schools, compared to 25 percent of non-Hispanic whites. Relatively few Latinos or nonHispanic whites say that high school students receive too much standardized testing (12% to 17%). Do you think the amount of standardized testing of elementary and middle school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? Too much Right amount Not enough Don’t know Do you think the amount of standardized testing of high school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? Too much Right amount Not enough Don’t know All Adults 22% 33 33 12 16% 32 39 13 Central Valley 23% 37 31 9 14% 38 38 10 -9- Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 23% 31 32 14 20% 32 34 14 21% 33 35 11 14% 38 40 8 17% 34 35 14 16% 29 42 13 16% 30 40 14 12% 34 45 9 California Policy Issues State Budget Priorities When asked to rate the importance of major categories of state spending, given the large budget deficit expected next year, Californians give a high priority to three of the four categories mentioned. Most (76%) say spending for K-12 public schools should be a high priority; 53 percent also assign a high priority to public health and welfare programs and 50 percent to public colleges and universities. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say that K-12 education (81% to 74%), higher education (64% to 44%), and public health and welfare (56% to 51%) should be high priorities for the state. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to describe these three categories as high priorities for state spending. Only corrections and prisons are seen as a low priority issue (45%) – fewer than one in four Californians consider this a high priority for state funds. While most Californians consider education a high priority for state funding, the number giving it this rating has dropped since a 1998 PPIC Statewide Survey. Seventy-six percent of residents today rate K-12 education as a high priority, compared to 85 percent in 1998; 50 percent rate colleges and universities as a high priority, down from 58 percent in 1998. Levels of support are down slightly for health and welfare (56% to 53%) and corrections (26% to 22%). "On another topic, the state faces up to a 14 billion dollar deficit next year. On a scale of 1 to 5 – with 1 being a very low priority and 5 being a very high priority – what priorities should be given to each of these four major categories of public spending in the state budget?" (below: 1,2 = low; 3 = medium; 4,5 = high) Spending for K-12 public schools? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for public health and welfare? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for public colleges and universities? Low Medium High Don’t know Spending for corrections, such as prisons? Low Medium High Don’t know All Adults Central Valley Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 9% 13 76 2 11% 14 74 1 7% 11 80 2 7% 12% 6% 14 12 11 76 74 81 3 22 18% 27 53 2 23% 28 48 1 15% 27 58 0 17% 27 55 1 20% 27 52 1 19% 23 56 2 19% 30 50 1 18% 34 46 2 18% 30 52 0 17% 29 53 1 21% 31 47 1 12% 21 64 3 45% 31 22 2 41% 29 27 3 52% 29 18 1 43% 33 21 3 42% 31 25 2 40% 31 25 4 - 10 - Political Trends Governor’s Ratings A slight majority of Californians (51%) express approval of the overall job that Governor Davis is doing in office. Californians have not changed their opinion of the governor's performance much since the last PPIC Statewide Survey in October, when 54 percent approved of his overall job performance. Democrats (63%) are much more likely than Republicans (29%), and Latinos (63%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (45%), to approve of the job that Davis is doing. Half of the voters outside of the major parties say that the governor is doing a good job overall in office. Support for the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security is much stronger: 66 percent approve of his response and 20 percent disapprove. In October, a similar 62 percent said they approved of the governor’s handling of terrorism and security. Three in four Democrats, a slim majority of Republicans, and two in three other voters approve of the governor’s handling of this issue. Latinos (72%) are more approving than non-Hispanic whites (62%). Forty-nine percent of registered voters approve of Davis’ job performance overall, while 42 percent disapprove. Approval is lower among likely voters: 46 percent of likely voters approve of the governor's overall performance and 48 percent disapprove. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security in California? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Other Voters 51% 37 12 63% 28 9 29% 62 9 52% 37 11 66% 20 14 75% 15 10 52% 31 17 64% 19 17 Not Registered to Vote Latino 60% 20 20 63% 22 15 69% 13 18 72% 16 12 - 11 - Political Trends President’s Ratings Overall support for President George W. Bush is very high in California today: 79 percent approve of the job he is doing in office, while only 18 percent disapprove. This level of support for the president has remained essentially the same since the October survey, when 80 percent approved of his job performance. In a national survey by the Washington Post and ABC News in late November, 89 percent of Americans approved of the president’s performance in office. Although Republicans, at 95 percent, are by far the most supportive, even an impressive seven in ten Democrats and independent voters approve of the job that the president is doing. Bush has even higher ratings from the California public on his handling of terrorism and security, with an 85 percent approval rating. Support for his handling of this issue is consistently high across all partisan categories and demographic groups. There is no difference between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites on either overall approval of the president's performance or specific approval of the way he is handling the issue of terrorism and security. Those who rate terrorism and security as a big problem in California are somewhat more approving than those who do not; however, even among those who are not as concerned about the threat of terrorism, the president has a strong overall approval rating (77%), and an equally impressive rating for his handling of terrorism and security (83%). Do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the issue of terrorism and security? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Other Voters 79% 18 3 70% 27 3 95% 4 1 71% 24 5 85% 13 2 81% 17 2 95% 4 1 79% 19 2 Not Registered to Vote Latino 81% 16 3 81% 16 3 83% 14 3 85% 12 3 - 12 - Political Trends U.S. Congress’ Ratings The higher job performance ratings that the president has received seem to have extended to the U.S. Congress as well. When asked to rate congressional job performance, 59 percent of Californians said the legislative body is doing an excellent or good job. Only 38 percent were of this same mind 14 months ago, just prior to the 2000 election, and the number has never risen above 40 percent in any of the prior PPIC Statewide Surveys. Similarly, individual representatives to the U.S. Congress have reaped the benefits of this surge in public support: 52 percent of California residents give their own representative an excellent or good rating, compared to 44 percent in October 2000 and 46 percent in August 2000. These ratings represent an important change from last year’s surveys: In the past, individual representatives have received higher ratings than Congress as a whole, while today the legislative body as a whole receives higher ratings than individual representatives. Republicans (65%) are more likely than Democrats (57%) to say Congress as a whole is doing an excellent or good job, while independents (49%) seem the least impressed. This difference is consistent with past Statewide Surveys, although the overall level of support is higher today. However, in another break with earlier results, Republicans (60%) are the most content with their own representative, while Democrats (53%) and independents (50%) are less so. In August and October of 2000, it was Democrats who were slightly more likely to approve of their own representative. Latinos are as likely as non-Hispanic whites to feel Congress is doing an excellent or good job, but marginally less likely to feel the same about the performance of their own representative (47% to 55%). Likely voters give ratings similar to those of Californians in general. "How do you rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress at this time – excellent, good, fair, or poor?" Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know Oct 98 5% 34 40 19 2 Dec 98 4% 29 42 22 3 Sep 99 2% 24 48 21 5 All Adults Dec 99 5% 30 44 18 3 Aug 00 4% 34 45 14 3 Oct 00 5% 33 46 13 3 Dec 01 13% 46 31 8 2 "What about the representative to the U.S. House of Representatives from your congressional district: How do you rate his or her performance at this time – excellent, good, fair, or poor?" Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know All Adults Aug 00 7% 39 31 8 15 Oct 00 8% 36 36 7 13 - 13 - Dec 01 10% 42 28 7 13 Political Trends State Legislature’s Ratings The state legislature has not experienced the boost in approval ratings accorded to the Congress, president, and governor: Approval of the state legislature now stands at 53 percent, compared to 56 percent in September 2000 and 58 percent in January 2001. Democrats (61%) are the most likely to approve of the Democrat-controlled legislature, while Republicans are the least likely (42%); ratings of independent voters (55%) lie between the major parties. Latinos (62%) are more satisfied than are non-Hispanic whites (51%) with the performance of the legislature. Since January, the approval rating of the state legislature has fallen by 5 points overall, and it has fallen fairly consistently across all partisan categories: It is down five points among Democrats, six points among Republicans, and four points among independent voters. Californians are more approving of their individual members of the legislature: Sixty-one percent approve and 23 percent disapprove of the legislators who represent their assembly and state senate districts. This is in contrast to attitudes toward the U.S. Congress today, where people are more approving of the institution as a whole than of their individual representatives. However, the higher approval for one’s own state legislators matches the general pattern of U.S. Congress ratings prior to September 11th, when individual representatives had higher ratings than Congress as a whole. There are some partisan differences in attitudes toward individual state legislators, but they are weaker than those for the legislature as a whole: Democrats (68%) are still the most positive, but well over a majority of Republicans (55%) and independent voters (59%) also express approval of their district legislators. Latino ratings of individual legislative representatives are higher than those of non-Hispanic whites, but not by much (67% to 61%). Although likely voters are less approving than all Californians of the legislature as a whole, the difference is not large (50% to 53%) and does not extend to opinions about individual legislators. Party Registration Do you approve or disapprove of the job the California legislature is doing at this time? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the job that the state legislators representing your assembly and state senate districts are doing at this time? Approve Disapprove Don’t know All Adults 53% 29 18 61% 23 16 Democrat 61% 25 14 68% 19 13 Republican 42% 44 14 55% 34 11 Other Voters 55% 28 17 59% 26 15 Not Registered to Vote Latino 56% 18 26 62% 19 19 60% 13 27 67% 17 16 - 14 - Social and Economic Trends Overall Mood Although Californians are more likely to expect that bad rather than good economic times lie ahead, they are more likely to think that the state is going in the right direction rather than the wrong direction. This is the same unusual finding first reported in our PPIC Statewide Survey in October, and it is similar to trends that have been in evidence in national surveys since September 11th. Fifty-six percent of Californians say they expect bad financial times in the next 12 months, representing no significant change since October. A greater percentage of San Francisco Bay Area residents (62%) express this sentiment, but at least half of the residents in all regions expect bad times. Women (63%) are more worried than men (50%) about the state’s economy, and pessimism increases with education; no differences were seen across race, age, or income groups. Fifty-eight percent of California residents believe the state is headed in the right direction, compared to 60 percent in the October survey. Los Angeles residents (64%) are more likely than others to express this positive outlook. The gap between Latinos and non–Hispanic whites concerning the direction of the state is impressive: 68 percent of Latinos believe that California is heading in the right direction, compared to 54 percent of non-Hispanic whites. There are few other demographic differences, although pessimism about California’s future increases slightly with education and age. "Do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times?" Good times Bad times Don't know Sep 99 Dec 99 72% 76% 23 19 55 Feb 00 78% 15 7 All Adults Aug 00 Jan 01 72% 51% 21 38 7 11 May 01 38% 56 6 Jul 01 41% 50 9 Oct 01 32% 59 9 Dec 01 37% 56 7 "Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?" Right direction Wrong direction Don't know Dec 98 63% 28 9 Sep 99 61% 34 5 Dec 99 62% 31 7 All Adults Feb 00 Aug 00 Jan 01 65% 62% 62% 27 30 29 889 May 01 44% 48 8 Jul 01 44% 47 9 Oct 01 60% 29 11 Dec 01 58% 33 9 - 15 - Social and Economic Trends Consumer Confidence Compared to a year ago, a higher percentage of Californians now report being financially worse off (26%) than better off (21%). The current survey findings represent a sharp drop in this measure of consumer confidence over time. Californians today are much less likely to say they are financially better off than they said in September 2000 (42%), September 1999 (36%), and September 1998 (33%). San Francisco Bay area residents are the most likely to say they are financially worse off (31%); Central Valley residents are the least likely to feel this way (18%). A year ago, Central Valley residents were the most likely to say they were financially worse off, and San Francisco Bay area residents the least likely to feel this way. Latinos are as likely as non-Hispanic whites (21% to 22%) to say they are financially better off today. Consumer confidence among Latinos has dropped sharply since January 2001, when this group was more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say they were financially better off (46% to 35%). Although the financial situation among all income groups has deteriorated since January, lower-income Californians have lost ground disproportionately. One in three residents are concerned about themselves or family members losing their jobs in the next year. Interestingly, there has been only a small increase in that percentage since May 1998. San Francisco Bay area residents (21%) are the most likely to say they are very concerned about job loss; Central Valley residents are the least likely (10%). Latinos (50%) are twice as likely as non-Hispanic whites (25%) to be concerned about job losses; the percentage of respondents concerned with job loss decreases with higher income and education levels. On the other hand, optimism about the future has not changed: 41 percent of Californians believe that they will be financially better off a year from now, which is similar to results in September 2000 and January 2001. Latinos are more optimistic than non-Hispanic whites about their financial situation in the future (49% to 39%). Better off Worse off Same "Would you say that you and your family are financially better off, worse off, or just about the same as you were a year ago?" All Adults 21% 26 53 Central Valley 22% 18 60 Region SF Bay Area 16% 31 53 Los Angeles 19% 26 55 Other Southern California 25% 25 50 Latino 21% 25 54 "Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not?" (if yes: very or somewhat concerned?) Very concerned Somewhat concerned No Don’t know All Adults 16% 15 68 1 Central Valley 10% 13 76 1 Region SF Bay Area 21% 16 62 1 Los Angeles 17% 16 66 1 Other Southern California 16% 13 69 2 Latino 30% 20 49 1 - 16 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Social and Psychological Effects The terrorism attacks on September 11th have had one significant effect on most Californians’ lives: Seven in 10 residents report feeling more patriotic, and nearly half say they have felt a lot more patriotic. The overwhelming trend of increased patriotism is found across regions and within every major demographic, socioeconomic, and racial and ethnic group. However, Republicans (80%) are more likely than Democrats (69%) or independent voters (58%) to report having more patriotic feelings. While some observers have discussed the possibilities of major changes in lifestyle and attitudes as a result of September 11th, a majority of Californians today say they have not felt more anxious or depressed (58%), nor have they spent more time with family, friends, and neighbors (60%) as a result of the terrorism attacks. Moreover, three in four residents say they have not felt more religious or spiritual, nor have they attended religious services more often since this tragic event. Latinos seem to be more moved by the events of September 11th than non-Hispanic whites: They are more likely to report increased anxiety and depression (50% to 36%), social interaction (58% to 34%), and spiritual and religious feelings (42% to 21%). Women are more likely than men to say they have felt a change in their lives. Younger adults, lower income, and less educated residents are also more likely to report social, psychological, and spiritual changes "We are interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s feelings and everyday lives. In the past few weeks, have you _______________ because of the terrorism attacks?" All Adults Felt more patriotic or done things such as displaying the U.S. flag Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 46% 25 29 Felt more anxious or depressed Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 18% 24 58 Felt more social, or spent more time with family, neighbors, and friends Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 23% 17 60 Felt more spiritual or religious or attended religious services more often Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 14% 12 74 Central Valley 48% 24 28 19% 21 60 21% 16 63 15% 12 73 Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino 40% 24 36 15% 31 54 44% 25 31 21% 24 55 50% 27 23 14% 20 66 45% 27 28 24% 26 50 22% 19 59 24% 17 59 22% 16 62 36% 21 43 13% 13 74 14% 14 72 15% 11 74 22% 20 58 - 17 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Financial Effects In California, “when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.” Four in 10 residents report that they have been responsive to the post-September 11th media campaigns encouraging people to support the American economy by shopping. Moreover, almost six out of ten Californians have given either time or money to charitable groups specifically because of the terrorism attacks. Lower percentages report any major effects of the terrorism attacks on their workplace or their travel plans. One in three residents report a slowdown at work, and one in four say they have cancelled or postponed travel plans as a result of the terrorism attacks. How does this view fit with the reports of major reductions in business activity and travel since September 11th? Some observers suggest that the recent economic slowdown is the result of a recession already in progress rather than a consequence of the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Latinos are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to have experienced a work slowdown, to change travel plans, and to shop in an effort to support the American economy. Charitable donations and volunteering tends to increase with income and education level. Shopping to support the economy is more common among younger residents. Those who say they have felt more patriotic since September 11th have also been more likely to shop in an effort to support the American economy. "We are also interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s financial conditions and decisions. In the past few weeks, ____________________________ because of the terrorism attacks?" All Adults Central Valley Region SF Bay Area Los Angeles Other Southern California Latino Have you gone shopping in an effort to support the American economy Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 19% 23 58 16% 25 59 16% 21 63 18% 24 58 22% 22 56 21% 28 51 Have you donated money or volunteered time to charities Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 15% 43 42 13% 47 40 13% 40 47 16% 44 40 16% 42 42 12% 42 46 Has your business or workplace had a slowdown in economic activity Yes, a lot Yes, a little No, Don’t work 18% 15 67 13% 12 75 20% 19 61 22% 17 61 17% 15 68 25% 19 56 Have you postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans Yes, a lot Yes, a little No 12% 11 77 11% 8 81 9% 12 79 14% 12 74 11% 10 79 15% 16 69 - 18 - Social and Economic Trends September 11: Effects on Immigration Attitudes Most Californians want immigration levels to be reduced; only one-third want the present level to continue. Nonetheless, Californians are more positive than the rest of the nation toward immigration, as we see when we compare the results of this Statewide Survey with those of a national poll conducted in October 2001: 15 percent of Californians (compared to 8 percent of Americans) believe that immigration levels should be increased; 48 percent of Californians (compared to 58 percent of Americans) believe that immigration levels should be reduced. In California, Latinos are much less likely than non-Hispanic whites to want present immigration levels lowered (30% to 57%). Unfortunately, there are no statewide trends available that would allow us to compare answers to this question before and after September 11th. Californians’ attitudes about immigrants have not changed since September 11th. As in February 2000, more than half of the state's residents today see immigrants as a benefit to California’s economy, while about one in three see them as a fiscal burden for the state government. Today, three out of four Latinos believe that immigrants are a benefit to California, while non-Hispanic whites are split equally on the question of whether immigrants represent more of a benefit to the economy (46%) or a burden to public services (44%). More Democrats (59%) and independents (55%) than Republicans (40%) think immigrants are a benefit to the state. A larger percentage of residents in the San Francisco Bay area (64%) than in Los Angeles (53%), other parts of Southern California (52%), or the Central Valley (52%) believe that immigrants are a benefit to California. "In your view, should legal immigration into the United States be kept at its present level, increased, or decreased?" All Adults U.S.* California Present level 30% 34% Increased 8 15 Decreased Don’t know 58 48 43 * Source: CNN/USA Today/Gallup Poll, October 2001 "Which of these two views is closest to yours?" Immigrants today are a benefit to California because of their hard work and job skills Immigrants today are a burden to California because they use public services Don’t know April 98 46% 42 12 All Adults Feb 00 Dec 01 54% 54% 34 36 12 10 - 19 - Social and Economic Trends News Attentiveness Californians have been paying close attention to the aftermath of the September 11th attacks. A remarkable 91 percent have followed the news fairly closely or very closely. More Californians are following this story now than followed the electricity crisis throughout 2001. There are no differences in attentiveness across regions, racial or ethnic groups, or by any other demographic characteristic. A lower percentage of Californians has followed economic news, but the percentage who say they have followed it fairly or very closely (65%) is higher than in July (59%). In the San Francisco Bay area, which has been hard hit by the collapse of the high-tech sector, news about the economy has received closer attention (72%) than in any other area of the state. Latinos (50%) are much less likely than non-Hispanic whites (71%) to have followed economic news. Wealthier, better educated, and older Californians have followed the stock market and economy much more closely than others. Most Californians have not paid close attention to news about the California budget. Despite the tremendous budget shortfall expected, only 44 percent of Californians say they have followed the story fairly or very closely. There are no differences across regions of the state. "Tell me if you followed these news stories very closely, fairly closely, not too closely, or not at all closely ..." Region News about the terrorism attacks on the United States Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely News about the stock market and U.S. economy Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely News about the California state budget Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely All Adults 63% 28 7 2 30% 35 21 14 13% 31 34 22 Central Valley 65% 30 4 1 26% 34 21 19 15% 29 34 22 SF Bay Area 58% 34 7 1 34% 38 17 11 11% 34 34 21 Los Angeles 67% 24 7 2 26% 38 22 14 14% 31 35 20 Other Southern California Latino 63% 27 7 3 60% 27 10 3 33% 32 23 12 24% 26 29 21 13% 29 32 26 19% 29 36 16 - 20 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, with research assistance from Lisa Cole and Eric McGhee. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,000 California adult residents interviewed from November 26 to December 4, 2001. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers, ensuring that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in California were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to five times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Maria Tello translated the survey into Spanish. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of California's adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,000 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. The sampling error for the 1,503 registered voters is +/- 2.5%, for the 953 likely voters is +/-3.5%, and for the 377 GOP primary likely voters is +/- 5%. Sampling error is just one type of error to which surveys are subject. Results may also be affected by factors such as question wording, question order, and survey timing. Throughout the report, we refer to four geographic regions. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba Counties. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, and "Other Southern California" includes the mostly suburban regions of Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Diego Counties. These four regions were chosen for analysis because they are the major population centers of the state, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population; moreover, the growth of the Central Valley and “Other Southern California” regions have given them increasing political significance. We present specific results for Latinos because they account for about 24 percent of the state's adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing voter groups. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. We contrast the opinions of Democrats and Republicans with "other" or “independent” registered voters. This third category includes those who are registered to vote as “decline to state” as well as a fewer number who say they are members of other political parties. In some cases, we compare PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted by CNN/USA Today/Gallup in October 2001, Belden Russonello & Stewart in July 2000, the Washington Post/ABC News Poll in November 2001, and The Gallup Organization in November 2001. We used 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001 PPIC Statewide Surveys to analyze trends over time in California. - 21 - - 22 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT NOVEMBER 26 – DECEMBER 4, 2001 2,000 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 58% right direction 33 wrong direction 9 don’t know 2. Thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing California today? (code, don’t read) 15% jobs, the economy, unemployment 14 electricity cost, supply, demand 12 education 6 terrorism, security, bioterrorism, anthrax 6 growth, population, overpopulation 4 immigration, illegal immigration 4 crime, gangs 4 environment, pollution 3 poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare 3 traffic and transportation 3 housing costs, housing availability 3 state government, governor, legislature 2 taxes, cutting taxes 2 state budget, state deficit 2 water 1 health care, HMO reform 1 drugs 1 race relations, racial and ethnic issues 1 development, sprawl, land use issues 5 other (specify) 8 don't know 3. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? 51% approve 37 disapprove 12 don’t know 4. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of terrorism and security in California? 66% approve 20 disapprove 14 don’t know 5. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the job the California legislature is doing at this time? 53% approve 29 disapprove 18 don’t know 6. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the job that the state legislators representing your assembly and state senate districts are doing at this time? 61% approve 23 disapprove 16 don’t know 7. Turning to economic conditions in California, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 37% good times 56 bad times 7 don’t know On another topic, the state faces up to a 14 billion dollar deficit next year. On a scale of 1 to 5—with 1 being a very low priority and 5 being a very high priority—what priorities should be given to each of these four major categories of public spending in the state budget? (rotate q. 8 to 11) 8. How about spending for kindergarten through 12th grade public schools? 9% low 13 medium 76 high 2 don’t know 9. How about spending for public health and welfare? 18% low 27 medium 53 high 2 don’t know 10. How about spending for public colleges and universities? 19% low 30 medium 50 high 1 don’t know 11. How about spending for corrections, such as prisons? 45% low 31 medium 22 high 2 don’t know - 23 - 12. On another topic, how much of a problem is the quality of education in kindergarten through 12th grade public schools in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 51% big problem 32 somewhat of a problem 13 not much of a problem 4 don't know 13. In the past two years, do you think the quality of education in California’s kindergarten through 12th grade public schools has improved, gotten worse, or stayed the same? 28% improved 24 gotten worse 40 stayed the same 8 don't know 14. Do you think the amount of standardized testing of elementary and middle school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? 22% too much 33 right amount 33 not enough 12 don't know 15. Do you think the amount of standardized testing of high school students in your community is too much, the right amount, or not enough? 16% too much 32 right amount 39 not enough 13 don't know How do you feel about the following proposals that have been made to improve K-12 public schools in California? 16. Do you favor or oppose increasing teachers’ pay based on merit—such as how well their students perform on tests—to attract and retain more and better teachers? 66% favor 30 oppose 4 don’t know 17. Do you favor or oppose giving school districts with the lowest student test scores in the state more resources than other school districts? 55% favor 40 oppose 5 don’t know 18. On another topic, how much of a problem is the cost, supply, and demand for electricity in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 48% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 18 not much of a problem 1 don't know 19. In the next few years, do you think the issue of the cost, supply, and demand for electricity will hurt the California economy or not? (If yes: Do you think it will hurt the California economy a great deal or only somewhat?) 35% yes, a great deal 30 yes, only somewhat 5 yes, don’t know 26 no 4 don’t know 20. On another topic, overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president? 79% approve 18 disapprove 3 don’t know 21. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the issue of terrorism and security? 85% approve 13 disapprove 2 don't know 22. Overall, how do you rate the job performance of the U.S. Congress at this time—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 13% excellent 46 good 31 fair 8 poor 2 don't know 23. What about the representative to the U.S. House of Representatives from your congressional district—how do you rate his or her performance at this time—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 10% excellent 42 good 28 fair 7 poor 13 don't know - 24 - 24. On another topic, how much of a problem is terrorism and security in California today? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 31% big problem 42 somewhat of a problem 24 not much of a problem 3 don't know 25. How worried are you that you or someone in your family will be the victim of a terrorist attack—very worried, somewhat worried, not too worried, or not at all worried? 11% very worried 26 somewhat worried 35 not too worried 27 not at all worried 1 don’t know We are interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s feelings and everyday lives. In the past few weeks ... (rotate q. 26 to 29) 26. Have you felt more anxious or depressed because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 18% yes, a lot 24 yes, a little 58 no 31. Has your business or workplace had a slowdown in economic activity because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Has business slowed down a lot or a little?) 18% yes, a lot 15 yes, a little 53 no 14 don’t work/don’t know 32. Have you postponed or cancelled long-distance travel plans because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have your travel plans changed a lot or a little?) 12% yes, a lot 11 yes, a little 77 no 33. Have you gone shopping or spent money in other ways in an effort to support the American economy because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have you spent a lot or a little money for this reason?) 19% yes, a lot 23 yes, a little 58 no 34. On another topic, as far as your own situation, would you say that you and your family are financially better off or worse off or just about the same as you were a year ago? 27. Have you felt more spiritual or religious or attended religious services more often because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 21% better off 26 worse off 53 same 14% yes, a lot 12 yes, a little 74 no 35. Looking ahead, do you think that a year from now you and your family will be financially better off or worse off or just about the same as now? 28. Have you felt more social or spent more time with family, neighbors, and friends because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 23% yes, a lot 17 yes, a little 60 no 29. Have you felt more patriotic or done things such as display the U.S. flag because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Is that a lot or a little?) 46% yes, a lot 25 yes, a little 29 no We are also interested in how the terrorism attacks on America are affecting people’s financial conditions and decisions. In the past few weeks ... (rotate q. 30 to 33) 30. Have you donated money or volunteered time to charities because of the terrorism attacks? (if yes: Have you donated or volunteered a lot or a little?) 15% yes, a lot 43 yes, a little 42 no - 25 - 41% better off 9 worse off 47 same 3 don’t know 36. Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not? (if yes: Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?) 16% yes, very concerned 15 yes, somewhat concerned 68 no 1 don’t know 37. On another topic, in your view, should legal immigration into the United States be kept at its present level, increased, or decreased? 34% present level 15 increased 48 decreased 3 don’t know 38. Which of these two views is closest to yours? (rotate a and b) (a) Immigrants today are a benefit to California because of their hard work and job skills; (b) Immigrants today are a burden to California because they use public services. 54% benefit 36 burden 10 neither, don’t know I will read a list of some recent news stories covered by news organizations. As I read each one, tell me if you followed this news story very closely, fairly closely, not too closely, or not at all closely. (rotate q. 39 to 41) 39. News about the terrorism attacks on the United States. 63% very closely 28 fairly closely 7 not too closely 2 not at all closely 40. News about the California state budget. 13% very closely 31 fairly closely 34 not too closely 22 not at all closely 41. News about the stock market and U.S. economy. 30% very closely 35 fairly closely 21 not too closely 14 not at all closely 42. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent?) 36% yes, Democrat (skip to q. 45) 27 yes, Republican (skip to q. 44) 4 yes, another party (skip to q. 45) 12 yes, independent (ask q. 43) 21 no, not registered (skip to q. 45) [Responses recorded for questions 43-52 are from likely voters only. All other responses are from all adults.] 43. (Independents only) California voters like yourself will be able to choose between voting in the Republican primary and the Democratic primary in March 2002. Do you plan to vote in the Republican primary, the Democratic primary, or neither? 23% Republican primary 11 Democratic primary 40 neither 26 don’t know 44. (GOP primary voters only) If the Republican primary election for governor were held today and these were the candidates, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask “or someone else?”) 37% Richard Riordan 13 Bill Jones 5 William E. Simon 45 other, don’t know If these were the candidates in the November 2002 governor’s election ... (rotate q. 45-47) 45. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 45% Gray Davis, a Democrat 35 Bill Jones, a Republican 20 other, don’t know 46. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 40% Gray Davis, a Democrat 44 Richard Riordan, a Republican 16 other, don’t know 47. Would you vote for … (rotate names) 46% Gray Davis, a Democrat 31 William E. Simon, a Republican 23 other, don’t know 48. Which of these statements is closest to your view of Governor Gray Davis? 33% I like Davis and I like his policies 25 I like Davis but I dislike his policies 7 I dislike Davis but I like his policies 30 I dislike Davis and I dislike his policies 5 don't know 49. How much credit do you think that Governor Gray Davis deserves for the fact that California did not have major problems with rolling blackouts and power outages this summer—a lot, only some, very little, or none? 25% a lot 33 some 21 very little 19 none 2 don't know - 26 - 50. Proposition 45 on the March 2002 ballot, the “Legislative Term Limits, Local Voter Petitions” initiative, allows registered voters in assembly or state senate districts to submit petition signatures to permit their incumbent state legislator to run for re-election and serve an additional four years maximum, if a majority of voters approves. This option would only be permitted once per legislator, petitions would be filed before the end of the legislator’s final term, and petition signatures would be subject to specified requirements. This measure would result in unknown, probably minor, costs to local and state government. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on proposition 45? 46% yes 45 no 9 don’t know 51. The “Legislative Term Limits, Local Voters Petition” initiative would change the legislative term limits that became state law when voters passed a citizens’ initiative. Knowing this, would you vote yes or no on this state proposition? 43% yes 45 no 12 don’t know 52. The California legislature has operated under term limits since 1990. Overall, do you think that term limits have been a good thing or a bad thing for California or do they make no difference? 49% good thing 17 bad thing 30 no difference 4 don’t know 53. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 9% very liberal 22 somewhat liberal 33 middle-of-the-road 26 somewhat conservative 10 very conservative 54. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics—a great deal, a fair amount, only a little, or none? 16% great deal 47 fair amount 31 only a little 6 none 55. How often would you say you vote—always, nearly always, part of the time, seldom, or never? 49% always 24 nearly always 10 part of the time 5 seldom 12 never [56-64: demographic questions] - 27 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Angela Blackwell President Policy Link Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Dennis A. Collins President The James Irvine Foundation Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Monica Lozano President and Chief Operating Officer La Opinión Donna Lucas President NCG Porter Novelli Max Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Richard Schlosberg President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. 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