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object(Timber\Post)#3742 (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(12) "S_598MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "229095" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(68173) "Preface California is now in the midst of historic changes that will profoundly affect the future of the state. To improve understanding of these changes and their effect on the political status quo, PPIC will conduct a series of large-scale public opinion surveys during the 1998 election cycle. This report presents the results of the second of these statewide surveys. The first was conducted in April. The purpose of the surveys is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces at work in California elections and in shaping the state's public policies. The surveys are intended to provide the public and policymakers with relevant—advocacyfree—information on the following: • Californians' overall impressions and concerns about the economy, population growth, governance, and quality of life and about key issues such as education, welfare, and immigration. • Differences in social and political attitudes among different demographic, age, and economic groups and across different regions of the state. • The characteristics of groups that are shaping the state's elections and policy debates. • The political attitudes underlying "voter distrust" of government and low voter turnout and how both affect the outcomes of elections and the success of ballot initiatives. Additional copies of this report or the April report may be ordered by calling (800) 232-5343 [mainland U.S.] or (415) 291-4415 [Canada, Hawaii, overseas]. Press Release MAJORITY SAY CANDIDATE DEBATES WILL INFLUENCE THEIR VOTE IN PRIMARY, SURVEY FINDS People Care How Candidates Fund Their Campaigns Latino Support for Bilingual Education Initiative Waning SAN FRANCISCO, California, May 11, 1998 — Eighty-five percent of California's likely voters say that candidate performances in public debates will influence how they vote, according to a statewide survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California. Ironically, although more Californians get their political news from television than from any other source (41%), no major network has agreed to televise the first gubernatorial debate, scheduled for Wednesday, May 13. The second in a series of large-scale surveys conducted by Mark Baldassare shows Democrat Gray Davis with 23%, Al Checchi with 19%, and Jane Harman with 8% support among likely voters. Republican Dan Lungren receives 23%. While support for Checchi and Lungren remains unchanged since PPIC’s April survey, Davis has gained 11 points and Harman has dropped 10. Crossover voting continues to influence the race, with Democratic candidates receiving one in four Republican votes. Latino voters still favor Checchi by a wide margin. In the U.S. Senate race, Darrell Issa has expanded his lead over Matt Fong, his challenger for the Republican nomination. Among likely voters, Issa receives 22% — an 8-point gain since April — and Fong 10%. Democrat Barbara Boxer has lost four points since the last survey and now receives 39%. She is backed by a majority of Latino voters (53%). Subtle but important shifts are under way in voter preferences about candidate qualifications and campaign financing. By 46% to 36%, likely voters now say experience in elected office is a more important qualification than experience running a business. One month ago, voters were almost equally divided when asked which qualifications they value more in candidates for statewide office. Last month’s survey also found that six in 10 California voters were indifferent about self-funding. Now, the current survey indicates that when voters are asked to choose, they prefer a candidate who collects money from supporters rather than one who uses personal wealth to finance a campaign, by a fairly wide margin (52% to 34%). “As Election Day draws nearer and more voters tune in, they seem to be returning to more traditional political values about candidates and losing enthusiasm for some of the more controversial initiatives,” said Mark Baldassare, director of the PPIC Statewide Survey. California voters continue to strongly support Proposition 227, the initiative that would end most bilingual education programs in public schools, but support has slipped since President Clinton announced his opposition and the state legislature passed a bill authorizing local school districts to make decisions about bilingual programs. Sixty-seven percent of likely voters support the initiative — an 8-point drop from last month’s survey — while 28% are opposed. Latino voters, who favored the initiative just one month ago (58% to 39%), are now equally divided (48% to 48%). Press Release Proposition 226, while still favored by a majority of likely voters, has also lost support. The initiative, which would require that unions obtain permission from their members before using union dues for political contributions, is supported by 59% of likely voters, with 33% opposed. PPIC’s April survey showed 67% in favor and 25% opposed. Voters more strongly support placing restrictions on corporate campaign contributions (55%) than on union contributions (50%). A majority of Latino voters (51%) oppose Proposition 226. Latinos differ from Californians as a whole on a number of diverse issues. They are more willing to increase funding for social programs, even if it means increasing taxes (58% to 51%). A greater number believe that government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest (63% to 54%). Latinos are less likely to support a woman’s right to choose: 42% are in favor, compared with 61% of all Californians. However, contrary to received wisdom, Latinos are as likely as Californians as a whole to believe that homosexuality should be accepted by society (55% to 58%). These findings support the conclusions of the April survey that California Latinos defy political, social, and economic labels. The April survey also revealed that crime and education, in that order, were Californians’ top public policy concerns. Responses to follow-up questions in the current survey indicate that Californians see crime and the quality of schools as very serious problems facing the state. Ninetyfour percent of Californians believe that crime is a problem, with 66% calling it a “big problem.” Although concern about crime pervades all regions of the state, residents in the Central Valley are more likely to consider it a big problem than San Francisco Bay area residents (76% to 53%). Despite recent reports of falling crime rates throughout the state, 46% of Californians believe that the crime rate is rising. Paradoxically, when asked how safe they feel in their own neighborhoods at night, the majority of Californians in all regions of the state say they feel very to somewhat safe. Nearly 80% of Californians also believe that the quality of K-12 education in the state is a problem, with 46% calling it a big problem. San Francisco Bay area residents express the most serious concern: 53% believe it is a big problem. Interestingly, parents of public school children are slightly less concerned than the population as a whole: 42% call K-12 education a big problem. Although they believe public education is in bad shape, residents are not in favor of making it easier for local school districts to raise taxes. Fifty-six percent oppose allowing a simple majority, rather than the current two-thirds requirement, to approve local tax increases for schools. Residents are more supportive of another proposal: 58% are in favor of providing parents with tax-funded vouchers. Parents of public school children overwhelmingly support this option (67% to 29%). The purpose of the PPIC Statewide Survey is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces at work in California elections and in shaping the state’s public policies. The surveys are intended to provide the public and policymakers with relevant information on the following: Californians’ overall impressions of key policy issues and of quality of life; differences in social and political attitudes among demographic groups and across different regions of the state; the characteristics of groups that are shaping the state’s elections and policy debates; and the political attitudes underlying “voter distrust” of government and low voter turnout. A minimum of four surveys will be conducted and released during the 1998 election cycle. The first survey was released in April 1998. Findings are based on a telephone survey of 2,008 California adult residents interviewed from May 1 to May 6, 1998. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for the 1,557 voters is +/- 2.5% and for the 960 likely - ii - Press Release voters is +/- 3%. For additional information on survey methodology, see page 23 of the attached report. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow at PPIC. He is founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey at UC Irvine. For over two decades, he has conducted surveys for major news organizations, including the Orange County Edition of the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, KCAL-TV, KRON-TV, and the San Francisco Chronicle. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to independent, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect the lives of Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report appears in full on PPIC’s Web site (www.ppic.org). Media interested in contacting survey respondents for reinterview should call Abby Cook at 415/291-4436. - iii - California Primary Governor's Race Voter preferences for Governor have shifted since our April survey. The cross-over voting made possible by the new blanket/open primary rules continues to affect the Democratic Party's nomination. Al Checchi continues to attract a larger percent than his Democratic rivals of likely Republican voters but has lost the lead to Gray Davis, while Jane Harman has fallen into third place. Among voters most likely to go to the polls in June, Davis has 23 percent, Checchi receives 19 percent, and Harman 8 percent. Republican candidate Dan Lungren has 23 percent of the vote. Two percent are supporting other candidates and 25 percent of likely voters are undecided. Davis has surged ahead with an 11-point gain since our April survey, while Harman's support has dropped by 10 points. Support for Al Checchi and Dan Lungren are unchanged. Davis has a comfortable lead over Checchi and Harman among likely Democratic voters. Independent voters are also more likely to support Davis than any other candidate. Half of Republicans say they will support Dan Lungren; however, one-quarter would vote for one of the three Democrats, and one in four are still undecided. Checchi draws his strongest support in the Los Angeles area, Davis is most popular in the San Francisco Bay area, and Lungren leads all other candidates in the Central Valley. Among Latinos, Checchi continues to receive much stronger support than any other candidate. Men give equal favor to Davis and Lungren (25% each), while fewer support Checchi (18%), Harman (6%), or others (3%). Women are dividing their support fairly equally among Davis (22%), Lungren (20%), and Checchi (19%), with fewer saying they will vote for Harman (10%) and others (2%). "If the June Primary election for Governor were being held today, who would you vote for?" (Likely Voters) Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other Don't know April 19% 12 18 23 3 25 May 19% 23 8 23 2 25 (Likely Voters) (May) Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other Don't know Dem 25% 33 12 4 2 24 Party Rep 13% 9 4 50 1 23 Other 15% 28 7 10 7 33 LA Metro 26% 19 6 24 1 24 Region SF Bay Area 9% 37 11 13 4 26 Central Valley 17% 26 7 32 1 17 Ethnicity Latino 39% 23 7 10 3 18 Other 15% 24 8 25 2 26 -1- California Primary Television Advertising for the Governor's Race Awareness of television commercials remains high in the race for Governor, as more candidates have begun to advertise and the tone has become more negative. Three in four likely voters report seeing candidates' television ads in the past month, the same level of awareness that was evident in the April survey. Checchi's ads continue to be the ones that voters have seen the most. One in five mentions Harman's ads. Only a few voters have noticed ads by the front-runners, Davis and Lungren, both of whom have begun to advertise only in the last few weeks. Voters across all parties, regions, and ethnic and racial groups recall seeing the Checchi ads more than others. Republicans recall Harman's ads more often than Democrats, and people in the Central Valley recall them more than people in other regions. Recall of Checchi's ads is highest among likely Latino voters (62 percent). "In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for Governor?" (If yes, "whose ads have you seen the most?") (Likely Voters) YES Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other answer NO April 79% 56 1 22 0 0 21 May 77% 52 4 19 2 0 23 (Likely Voters) (May) YES Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other answer NO Dem Party Rep Other LA Metro 55% 5 18 1 0 21 45% 4 23 4 0 24 56% 3 12 1 1 27 51% 4 18 2 1 24 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 59% 5 14 0 0 22 51% 3 25 3 0 18 62% 2 15 1 1 19 49% 5 20 2 0 24 -2- California Primary U.S. Senate Race Although Senator Barbara Boxer retains a sizeable lead over all other candidates for the U.S. Senate seat, that lead has slipped slightly. At the same time, businessman Darrell Issa has greatly widened his lead over Matt Fong for the Republican nomination. Issa's support has increased by 8 points since the April survey, while Fong's is unchanged. Among likely voters, 22 percent favor Issa and 10 percent support Fong, while 2 percent support other candidates. Four in 10 voters say they will cast their ballots for incumbent U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer. About one in four voters are still undecided. Issa has a 20-point lead over Fong among Republicans. One in four independent voters say they will vote for a Republican candidate, with Issa receiving more of their support than Fong. One in eight Democrats say they will vote for a Republican, with Issa edging out Fong in this group as well. Boxer has solid support among Democrats (61%) and a sizable percentage of independents (42%). Women support Boxer (43%) over Issa (19%), Fong (9%), and others (1%). Men also favor Boxer (35%) over Issa (25%), Fong (12%), and others (2%). Boxer has the strongest support on her home turf in the San Francisco Bay area. Issa does well in the Central Valley and Los Angeles area, while Fong outpolls Issa in the San Francisco Bay area. Latino voters strongly support Boxer. "If the June Primary election for the U.S. Senate were being held today, who would you vote for?" (Likely Voters) Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other Don't know April 43% 9 14 5 29 May 39% 10 22 2 27 (Likely Voters) (May) Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other Don't know Dem 61% 4 9 1 25 Party Rep 11% 19 39 1 30 Other 42% 9 17 5 27 LA Metro 37% 8 25 2 28 Region SF Bay Area 56% 12 5 1 26 Central Valley 33% 12 28 1 26 Ethnicity Latino 53% 8 12 2 25 Other 37% 11 23 2 27 -3- California Primary Television Advertising for the U.S. Senate Race Television advertising for the California Senate race continues to attract far less attention than advertising for the Governor's race. Only one in five likely voters recalls seeing television advertisements for the Senate candidates, and Issa's are the most recalled. (It should be noted that, to date, Issa is the only Senate candidate who has advertised on television.) These numbers have changed very little since the April survey. There are no party, regional, or ethnic-group differences. "In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for the U.S. Senate?" (If yes, "whose ads have you seen the most?") (Likely Voters) YES Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other answer NO April 17% 0 1 15 1 83 May 21% 0 1 19 1 79 Importance of Debates The four candidates for Governor will have their first debate on May 13, and it could play a crucial role in the outcome. Eighty-five percent of likely voters say that the candidates' performances in a public debate are important to them in deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor. Significantly, 37 percent say that public debates are very important to them. The public debate has even more significance for Democratic voters, who are choosing among three candidates for their party's nomination. Forty-five percent of likely Democratic voters say that the public debate among the candidates is very important to them in deciding whom to support in the June Primary. Among Republicans, only 29 percent say it is important. Among independents, 32 percent say that the candidates' performance in a public debate is important in casting their vote for Governor. "In deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor, how important to you are the candidates' performances in a public debate?" Very important Somewhat important Not important Don't know Likely Voters 37% 48 13 2 Democrats 45% 46 7 2 -4- California Primary Candidate Qualifications The survey shows a shift in the qualifications California voters value most in candidates for statewide office. By a 10-point margin, likely voters are now saying that they prefer someone with experience in elected office to someone with experience in business. One month earlier, California voters were almost equally divided when asked about which qualifications they value more in candidates for Governor or U.S. Senator. Democrats are now favoring experience in office over experience in business by a wide margin (59% to 24%), while Republicans (51% to 32%) and to a lesser extent independents (40% to 35%) are still more likely to look for business experience. Women value experience in office more (49% to 32%), while men are evenly split (42% to 40%). "People have different ideas about the qualifications they want when they vote for candidates for statewide office, such as Governor or U.S. Senator. Which of these is most important to you, (a) that the candidate has experience in elected office, or (b) that the candidate has experience running a business?" (Likely Voters) Experience in elected office Experience running a business Neither Both Don't know April 43% 40 6 7 4 May 46% 36 6 7 5 Campaign Spending Voters are sending mixed signals about statewide candidates who fund their own campaigns. Last month, we found that six in 10 California voters were indifferent about self-funding. The current survey indicates that by a fairly wide margin (52% to 34%), voters prefer a candidate for statewide office who takes the conventional route of collecting money from supporters to one who funds his or her own campaign. Moreover, very few are now indifferent to this issue. There are no differences across political parties. Bay area voters more likely to favor candidates who use contributions (61% vs. 21%). These survey findings come at a time when two candidates who have gone the conventional route of campaign financing, Democrat Davis and Republican Lungren, are leading in the race for Governor. However, in the U.S. Senate race, the leading Republican candidate, Issa, is self-funding. "People have different opinions on how candidates for statewide office should pay for their political campaigns. Which of these do you view most positively, (a) a candidate using mostly his or her own money to pay for political campaigning, or (b) a candidate using mostly money collected from his or her supporters to pay for political campaigning?" Own money Money from supporters Makes no difference Don't know Likely Voters 34% 52 8 6 Democrats 35% 53 6 6 -5- California Primary Proposition 227: Bilingual Education California voters continue to strongly support Proposition 227, the initiative that would end most bilingual education in the public schools. However, support has slipped since President Clinton announced his opposition and the California Legislature has passed legislation that would leave the choice up to local school districts. Two in three say they would vote yes on Proposition 227, while about one in four would vote no. Support has dropped 8 points since the April survey. Republicans overwhelmingly support the measure. A majority of Democrats and San Francisco Bay area voters are in favor of it. Of particular note, support for Proposition 227 among Latino voters has eroded since the April survey, dropping from 58 percent to 48 percent. Latinos are now evenly divided on ending bilingual education programs. Despite the erosion of support, likely voters are not much more informed about the current bilingual education programs in California's public schools than they were a month ago. Only one in four say they know a great deal, 47 percent say they know a fair amount, and nearly three in 10 say they know little or nothing. Latinos are much more likely to say they know a great deal about the school programs than other voters (41% to 21%). As stated above, the Legislature has approved and the Governor is now considering legislation that provides an alternative to Proposition 227. If passed, this legislation would allow local school districts to choose their own approach to teaching children who are not fluent in English. Fifty-two percent of likely voters approve of this proposal, while 42 percent disapprove, and 6 percent are undecided. Proposition 227 currently has more support and, if passed, would take precedence over the legislation. "If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 227?" (Likely Voters) Yes No Don't know April 75% 21 4 May 67% 28 5 (Likely Voters) (May) Yes No Don't know Dem 57% 35 8 Party Rep 80% 17 3 Other 64% 32 4 LA Metro 69% 26 5 Region SF Bay Area 58% 37 5 Central Valley 70% 24 6 Ethnicity Latinos 48% 48 4 Others 71% 24 5 "How much do you know about current bilingual education programs in California's public schools?" (Likely Voters) Great deal Fair amount Little/nothing April 20% 47 33 May 24% 47 29 -6- California Primary Proposition 226: Campaign Reform California voters may be losing interest in passing Proposition 226, which would require that unions obtain permission from their members before using union dues for political contributions and would ban foreign contributions to state and local candidates. Fifty-nine percent of voters now say they support Proposition 226, and one-in-three likely voters are opposed to this ballot measure. The number saying they would vote yes on Proposition 226 has dropped by 8 points in one month. Less than 50 percent of Democrats now support Proposition 226. Republicans still strongly favor this measure, while a majority of independent voters are also in favor. There are no differences across regions. Interestingly, a majority of Latino voters are now opposed to placing these restrictions on using union dues for political contributions. Possible erosion in support for Proposition 226 is suggested by the response to a question about placing restrictions on labor unions' ability to make political contributions (aside from the issue of getting members' permission). Likely voters favor restrictions by a six-point margin. One month ago, they favored union restrictions by a 12-point margin. Republicans (60%) are much more likely to approve of union restrictions than are Democrats (43%) or independents (48%). There is, in fact, more support for placing restrictions on the ability of business corporations to contribute to political candidates and initiatives. Fifty-five percent of likely voters approve of corporate restrictions, while 39 percent disapprove and 6 percent are undecided. There are no differences between Democrats, Republicans, and independents. "If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 226?" (Likely Voters) Yes No Don't know April 67% 25 8 May 59% 33 8 (Likely Voters) (May) Yes No Don't know Party Dem 48% 43 9 Rep 73% 20 7 Other 58% 33 9 LA Metro 59% 34 7 Region SF Bay Area 57% 32 11 Central Valley 61% 31 8 Ethnicity Latinos 44% 51 5 Others 62% 30 8 "Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of labor unions to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives?" (Likely Voters) Approve Disapprove Don't know April 53% 41 6 May 50% 44 6 -7- California Primary Media Watch Californians are a little more tuned in to news stories about the elections than they were one month ago, and they are warming up to the job that the news organizations are doing in covering the candidates and initiatives. Six in 10 likely voters are following the election news stories either very or fairly closely, while four in 10 are paying little or no attention to the news coverage of the 1998 California elections. Compared to one month ago, following the election news either very or fairly closely has increased by 9 points. Yet, only 13 percent say they are following the news about the election very closely, with about one month to go before the June 2nd Primary. Thirty-five percent of likely voters give the news organizations either excellent or good marks on reporting about the 1998 California elections. Four in 10 think they are doing a fair job, while about one in six give them poor marks. Positive ratings of news coverage on the elections have improved by 10 points since the April survey. Still, only about one in three are giving positive grades for the news stories about the upcoming elections. Interestingly, Democrats (40%) are more likely to give the news organizations excellent or good ratings than are Republicans (29%) or independents and other party voters (31%). "How closely have you been following the news stories about the upcoming 1998 California elections?" (Likely Voters) Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely April 9% 43 39 9 May 13% 48 32 7 "How would you rate the job that news organizations are doing in reporting about the upcoming 1998 California elections?" (Likely Voters) Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know April 3% 22 46 24 5 May 4% 31 42 18 5 -8- California Policy Issues Problem Seriousness In our April survey, crime and education topped the list of public policy concerns among Californians. When asked to name the single biggest problem facing the state, 28 percent cited crime, while 20 percent said education. Follow-up questions in the current survey indicate that many Californians see crime and the quality of public schools as very serious problems facing the state of California, although crime is more worrisome. Two in three adult residents say that crime is a "big problem" in California today. Another three in 10 say it is "somewhat of a problem," while only 4 percent say it is "not much of a problem." Across regions, three in four of the Central Valley residents say that crime in the state is a big problem, compared to two in three in the Los Angeles region and about one-half in the San Francisco Bay area. There are no significant differences between Latinos and others. Republicans (71%) are more likely than Democrats (65%) or other voters (56%) to say that crime is a big problem. Forty-six percent of California adults think that quality of education in K-12 public schools is a big problem in the state today. One in three describe this issue as somewhat of a problem. Only one in seven say it is not a problem at all. Public school parents are slightly less likely (42 percent) to rate education as a big problem. A little more than one-half of San Francisco Bay area residents are most likely to say that the quality of public schools is a big problem, while those in the Los Angeles region are slightly less likely to have this view. About four in 10 in the Central Valley say the public schools are a big problem for the state. Latinos are less likely than others to say that the quality of California's K-12 public education is a big problem (36% to 49%). There are no differences by political party affiliation. "In your opinion, how much of a problem is ________ / ________ in California today?" Crime Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know Quality of K-12 Education Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 66% 28 4 2 46% 33 14 7 LA Metro 68% 25 4 3 48% 31 14 7 Region SF Bay Area 53% 42 5 0 53% 34 8 5 Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 76% 19 3 2 62% 24 5 9 67% 29 3 1 39% 37 17 7 36% 34 26 4 49% 34 10 7 -9- California Policy Issues Crime Perceptions Despite published reports that crime is decreasing, most Californians believe that crime rates have been rising in the state for the past few years. Nevertheless, most feel safe walking in their own neighborhoods. Nearly half think that crime rates have increased in California in the past few years. Another quarter view them as staying about the same. Only one in four believes that crime rates have been declining. Across groups and regions, Central Valley residents are the most likely to say that crime rates have been rising in the past few years. There are no differences between Latinos and others. Two in three Californians say they feel safe walking alone in their neighborhood at night, while one in three say they feel very safe. One in three say they feel unsafe, with one in six saying they feel very unsafe. Residents in the San Francisco Bay area (76%) are more likely to say they feel safe than those living in either the Los Angeles region (62%) or the Central Valley (66%). By a small margin, Californians feel safer walking around their neighborhood today than they did four years ago. In a KCAL-TV News Survey of Californians conducted in March 1994, 60 percent said they felt safe and 40 percent said they felt unsafe. The results of the current survey reflect a six-point improvement in perceptions of safety from neighborhood crime. "In the past few years, do you think the crime rate in California has increased or decreased or stayed about the same?" All Adults Increased Decreased Stayed about the same Don't know 46% 24 28 2 LA Metro 43% 27 28 2 Region SF Bay Area 45% 23 30 2 Central Valley 53% 20 25 2 Ethnicity Latino 47% 23 28 2 Other 46% 24 28 2 "How safe do you feel walking alone in your neighborhood at night?" Very safe Somewhat safe Somewhat unsafe Very unsafe Don't know All Adults 33% 33 17 16 1 LA Metro 29% 33 18 19 1 Region SF Bay Area 38% 38 13 10 1 Central Valley 34% 32 18 15 1 Ethnicity Latino 23% 33 20 23 1 Other 36% 33 16 14 1 - 10 - California Policy Issues Education Reforms Voters do not appear eager to change the requirement that local school taxes must pass with a super majority rather than a simple majority vote. At the same time, many favor increasing school choice with tax-supported vouchers. Fewer than four in 10 Californians favor allowing local school districts to raise local taxes with a simple majority instead of a two-thirds vote. This proposal is supported by a bare majority of voters in the San Francisco Bay area. In other regions and among all ethnic groups, a majority of adults oppose this reform measure, including public school parents (55 percent). Voter support for changing the super majority requirement does not reach a majority among Democrats (46%), Republicans (32%) or other registered voters (40%). Nearly six in 10 adults favor the concept of providing parents with tax-funded vouchers to send their children to any public, private, or parochial school they choose. About one in three are opposed to school vouchers. Public support is strongest in the Los Angeles region and weakest in the Central Valley. Nearly two in three Latinos favor school vouchers, reflecting higher support than among most other residents, except public school parents (67 percent). Republicans (63%) are more supportive of school vouchers than Democrats (52%) or other voters (53%). "Do you favor or oppose allowing local school districts to raise local taxes with a simple majority instead of two-thirds vote?" Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 38% 56 6 LA Metro 35% 59 6 Region SF Bay Area 52% 44 4 Central Valley 37% 56 7 Ethnicity Latino 36% 56 8 Other 39% 56 5 "Do you favor or oppose providing parents with tax-funded vouchers to send their children to any public, private, or parochial school they choose?" Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 58% 37 5 LA Metro 61% 34 5 Region SF Bay Area 56% 39 5 Central Valley 53% 40 7 Ethnicity Latino 63% 31 6 Other 57% 38 5 - 11 - California Policy Issues Quality of Life Californians are feeling good about the state of their state. Seven in 10 say things are going well in California, although only one in eight say that things are going very well. Three in 10 say things are going badly, with one in 11 saying that things are going very badly. There are no differences across regions, nor are there variations between Latinos and others. This is a remarkable change from the public's mood four years ago. Then, 37 percent thought that things were going well, and 63 percent thought that they were going badly. These results, from a KCAL-TV News survey of Californians in 1994, are nearly the reverse of those reported today. "Overall, thinking about the quality of life in California today, do you think things are going ..." Very well Somewhat well Somewhat badly Very badly All Adults 13% 57 21 9 LA Metro 14% 56 21 9 Region SF Bay Area 14% 55 24 7 Central Valley 10% 64 19 7 Ethnicity Latino 14% 59 18 9 Other 13% 57 22 8 Mood of the State The mood of the state today is unchanged from our April survey. Most Californians remain upbeat about the direction of the state. Fifty-six percent say that things in the state are headed in the right direction, while 34 percent feel that the state is on the wrong track. There are no differences across regions of the state. Latinos are as likely as other residents to express optimism. Four years ago, only 27 percent thought that the state was headed in the right direction, while 60 percent believed it was going the wrong way (May 1994 survey of Californians for KCAL-TV News by Mark Baldassare). "Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?" Right direction Wrong direction Don't know All Adults 56% 34 10 LA Metro 56% 35 9 Region SF Bay Area 55% 36 9 Central Valley 57% 33 10 Ethnicity Latino 59% 33 8 Other 56% 35 9 - 12 - Political Trends Job Performance Californians give mixed reviews to political leaders and legislative bodies. Most give high ratings to President Clinton's overall job performance, despite ongoing investigations into his actions. Six in 10 say he is doing an excellent or good job as President, while one in four say he is doing a fair job. Only one in six rates his performance as poor. These ratings vary by party affiliation. Most Democrats (75%) give him excellent or good marks, compared to about half of the independent voters (47%) and far fewer Republicans (33%). Californians are much less generous in evaluating Congress and the state Legislature. One in three residents say the U.S. Congress is doing an excellent or good job. Three in 10 give the California Legislature positive grades. Most residents give the state and federal legislative branches fair grades, while about one in six give poor marks to the U.S. Congress and the state Legislature. The ratings of the Republican-controlled Congress and the Democratic-controlled state Legislature do not vary across Republicans, Democrats, and independent voters. Governor Wilson gets more negative scores than Clinton, the Congress, or the California Legislature. One in three Californians give Pete Wilson either excellent or good scores for his performance as Governor. One in three say he is doing a fair job. About three in 10 give him poor marks. Like the President's ratings, the Governor's marks vary by party affiliation. Most Republicans give the Governor excellent or good grades (52%), compared to far fewer Democrats (24%) and independent voters (30%). President Clinton's ratings are much better today than they were four years ago, when 43 percent gave him excellent or good ratings in a KCAL-TV News Survey conducted in May 1994 by Mark Baldassare. In that same survey, 28 percent gave positive grades to Governor Wilson, indicating a small improvement today in his positive job ratings. The state Legislature's positive ratings have improved from 14 percent to 30 percent. "How do you rate the job performance of ..." (All Adults) Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know President Clinton 21% 37 25 16 1 U.S. Congress 3% 30 49 15 3 Governor Wilson 6% 28 34 29 3 California Legislature 2% 28 52 13 5 - 13 - Political Trends Fiscal Issues When it comes to fiscal issues, trust in government decreases with distance from the local level. Only one in 10 Californians choose the federal government as most trustworthy for spending tax money wisely. One in six say they trust the state government the most with their money. Half are most confident in their local governments, including their cities (31%) and counties (22%) in the fiscal realm. Fifteen percent say they don't trust the federal, state or local levels when it comes to spending tax money wisely. There are no differences across political party lines or regions. Residents are about equally divided when it comes to the prospect of reducing taxes or spending more on social programs such as health care, social security, and unemployment benefits. By a slight margin, Californians favor spending more on social programs – even if it means raising taxes – but 44 percent would rather cut taxes. A higher percentage of Californians than national residents would rather see government reduce taxes, even if this means spending less on social programs (44% to 31%). Latino residents are more likely than Californians as a whole to say that the government should spend more on social programs, even if this means higher taxes (58% to 51%). Republicans are much more open to the idea of reducing taxes (64%) than are Democrats (31%) or other voters (42%). "What level of government do you trust the most to spend your tax money wisely?" Federal government State government County government City government None of the above Other answer Don't know All Adults 10% 17 22 31 15 0 5 "If the government had a choice between reducing taxes or spending more on social programs like health care, social security, and unemployment benefits, which do you think it should do ..." Reduce taxes, spend less U.S.* 31% All Adults California 44% California Latinos 38% Spend more, raise taxes 47 51 58 Don't know, it depends 22 5 4 *Source: National survey conducted by National Opinion Research Center in 1996 - 14 - Political Trends Government Regulation While many Californians oppose increasing government taxes and spending, most are not against an active regulatory role for the government in the economy and the environment. Californians are more likely than the U.S. population as a whole to believe that government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest (54% to 45%). More Democrat (60%) than Republican (43%) and independent and other party voters (48%) express that opinion. Latinos are considerably less likely than Californians as a whole to think that government regulation of business usually does more harm than good (33% to 43%). Most Californians believe that stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. Central Valley residents (45%) are more likely than those living in the Los Angeles region (35%) and the San Francisco Bay area (30%) to believe that environmental laws harm the economy. Republicans (42%) are also more likely than Democrats (35%) and other voters (28%) to say that environmental regulations cost too many jobs. Latinos are a little less likely than Californians as a whole to say that stricter environmental regulations are worth the cost (52% to 58%). Government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest. Government regulation of business usually does more harm than good. U.S.* 45% 46 All Adults California California Latinos 54% 63% 43 33 Don't know 934 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1996 Stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. Stricter environmental laws and regulations cost too many jobs and hurt the economy. U.S.* 63% 30 All Adults California California Latinos 58% 52% 37 41 Don't know 7 57 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1996 - 15 - Political Trends Social Issues On the social issues considered, Californians as a whole respond very much like the U.S. population. They are somewhat more supportive in acceptance of gay lifestyles, but almost identical on abortion issues. Fifty-five percent say that homosexual lifestyles should be accepted in society, while 40 percent feel that homosexuality should be discouraged by society. Californians are more likely than the nation as a whole to say that homosexuality should be accepted (55% to 46%). However, Republicans (40%) are much less likely to express acceptance of gay lifestyles than are Democrats (64%) and other voters (58%). Residents in the San Francisco Bay area (65%) are more likely than those living in the Los Angeles region (55%) and the Central Valley (46%) to say that gay lifestyles should be accepted. Latinos are as likely as Californians as a whole to say that homosexuals should be accepted by society (58% to 55%). Six in 10 Californians favor leaving the decision on whether or not to have an abortion up to the woman and her doctor. One in four want abortion to be legal only in some cases, while one in eight want abortion to be illegal in all circumstances. The views of Californians are nearly identical to the nation as a whole on this topic. A majority of Democrats (73%), Republicans (53%), and other voters (68%) want the abortion choice to be left up to the woman and her doctor. A majority in the San Francisco Bay area (74%), the Los Angeles region (58%), and the Central Valley (57%) also hold this view. Latinos are less likely than Californians as a whole to say that the choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor (42% to 61%), while they are 11 points higher in their desire to make abortions legal in only some cases and 9 points higher in their preference to make abortions illegal in all circumstances. All Adults Homosexuality is a way of life that should be accepted by society. Homosexuality is a way of life that should be discouraged by society. Don't know U.S.* 46% 48 6 California 55% 40 5 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1997 California Latinos 58% 37 5 All Adults The choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor. Abortion should be legal only in cases where pregnancy results from rape or incest or when the life of the mother is at risk. Abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. U.S.* 60% 26 11 California 61% 26 12 Don't know 31 *Source: National survey conducted by Wall Street Journal and NBC News in 1998 California Latinos 42% 37 21 0 - 16 - Political Trends Sources of Political Information Television is the major source of political news in California today. When asked where they get most of their information about politics, 41 percent of adult residents say television, 33 percent say newspapers, and 10 percent say the radio. Fewer than 10 percent mention either talking to people (8%), magazines and the Internet or on-line services (3% each), or other sources (1%). Residents of the San Francisco Bay area are the least likely to say they rely primarily on television and are more likely to report reading the newspaper, listening to the radio, and using the Internet for political news. Those living in the Central Valley rely more on television for political news than do the residents in the Los Angeles region. Latinos rely more than others on television for political news. One-half of Latinos say they depend mostly on television for political news, while one-quarter are informed by newspapers. There are no differences among Republicans, Democrats, and independent voters. However, voters are equally likely to rely mainly on newspapers (36%) or television (38%), while nonvoters are more likely to get most of their political news from television. "Where do you get most of your information about what's going on in politics today?" Newspapers Television Radio Magazines Talking to people Internet/on-line services Other Don't know All Adults 33% 41 10 3 8 3 1 1 LA Metro 33% 41 10 3 9 2 1 1 Region SF Bay Area 36% 32 14 4 6 6 1 1 Central Valley 30% 46 7 3 10 2 1 1 Ethnicity Latino 27% 50 8 3 8 2 0 2 Other 34% 39 10 4 8 3 1 1 - 17 - Social and Economic Trends Consumer Confidence Consumer confidence is unchanged from the April survey. California residents continue to feel positive about their personal financial situation. In this survey, 36 percent report being better off financially than they were a year ago, 13 percent worse off, and 51 percent the same. These perceptions are much more positive than perceptions four years ago, when 16 percent reported being better off, 32 percent worse off, and 52 percent the same (KCAL-TV News Survey of Californians in May 1994 by Mark Baldassare). In the current survey, three in four Californians report that their standard of living is comfortable. About one in eight report being more than comfortable, while a similar one in eight describe their standard of living as not comfortable. San Francisco Bay area residents are a little more likely than others to say their standard of living is more than comfortable. Latinos are less likely to say their current standard of living is more than comfortable. Still, the vast number of Californians cluster in the middle, describing their economic circumstances as comfortable. One in four residents are concerned about themselves or family members losing their jobs in the next year. Three in four are not at all worried about job losses. Four years ago, 30 percent of Californians worried about job losses, 6 percent said they had already lost their jobs, and 64 percent said they were not concerned about job losses (1994 California Business Roundtable Survey by Mark Baldassare). Thus, the numbers who are not concerned about job losses has increased by 9 points. Residents in the Los Angeles region are more likely to worry about job losses (29%), and Latinos are more likely than others to express concern about job losses (35% to 24%). Still, most California adults feel secure about current job conditions for themselves and the members of their family. More than comfortable Comfortable Not comfortable "How would you describe your current standard of living? Would you say it is ..." All Adults 14% 73 13 LA Metro 13% 72 15 Region SF Bay Area 17% 74 9 Central Valley 12% 74 14 Ethnicity Latino 8% 76 16 Other 16% 72 12 "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 of somewhat concerned?") Very concerned Somewhat concerned Not concerned Already lost job All Adults 14% 12 73 1 LA Metro 17% 12 70 1 Region SF Bay Area 12% 10 78 0 Central Valley 11% 12 75 2 Ethnicity Latino 20% 15 64 1 Other 13% 11 75 1 - 19 - Social and Economic Trends Regional Problems Traffic, population growth, and environmental pollution are rarely mentioned as the top issues facing the state. However, many residents see these three issues as creating big problems in the regions where they live. One in three residents identify traffic and transportation as a big problem in their region, and another third rate this issue as somewhat of a problem. Only one in three say that traffic is not a regional problem. Traffic congestion is seen as a big problem by more than half of San Francisco Bay area residents, compared to one in three in the Los Angeles region and one in six in the Central Valley. In the Central Valley, half the residents say that traffic congestion is not a problem at all, compared to only one in six in the San Francisco Bay area. Latinos are less likely than other Californians to see traffic congestion and transportation as big problems in their region. About one in four Californians rate population growth and development as a big problem in their region, while 38 percent say it is somewhat of a problem. About one-third say that growth is not a regional problem. San Francisco Bay Area residents are the most likely to say that growth is a big problem, while Central Valley residents are the most likely to perceive that growth is not a problem in their region. Latinos are a little less likely than others to perceive population growth and development as problematical for their region. Approximately one in four believes that air, water, and environmental pollution are big problems for their region, while nearly half say these issues pose at least somewhat of a problem. Only one in four think that pollution is not a problem at all in their region. Residents of the Los Angeles region are the most likely to see pollution as a big problem, while those living in the Central Valley are the least likely. Latinos are somewhat more likely than others to believe that pollution is a big regional problem. "How much of a problem is ________ / ________ / ________ in your region?" Transportation/traffic congestion Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know Population growth and development Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 33% 35 31 1 27% 38 34 1 LA Metro 34% 39 26 1 27% 38 34 1 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 54% 29 17 0 15% 34 50 1 27% 33 38 2 35% 35 29 1 38% 40 21 1 15% 42 43 0 21% 38 39 2 28% 39 32 1 - 20 - Social and Economic Trends Environmental pollution Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 27% 46 26 1 LA Metro 32% 45 22 1 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 25% 51 24 0 21% 50 29 0 32% 43 24 1 26% 47 27 0 Personal Happiness Most Californians say they are currently happy and express satisfaction with their housing, jobs, and leisure activities. Twenty-eight percent say they are very happy, 59 percent are pretty happy, and 13 percent are not happy. There are no differences in personal happiness by region or ethnic and racial group. One-half of California residents are very satisfied with their house or apartment, four in 10 are somewhat satisfied, and about one in 10 are not satisfied. Central Valley residents tend to be the most satisfied with their current housing. Fewer Latinos are very satisfied with their housing circumstances (44% to 56% of others). About one-half of California's employed residents say they are very satisfied with their jobs, four in 10 are somewhat satisfied and one in 10 are not satisfied. There are no differences by region. Latinos are slightly less likely to be highly satisfied with their current jobs. Californians are less satisfied with their leisure activities than they are with their housing and jobs. Forty-seven percent report that they are very satisfied with their leisure activities, 41 percent are somewhat satisfied, and 12 percent are not satisfied. There are no differences in leisure satisfaction across regions. Latinos are a little less likely than others to be highly satisfied with their leisure activities. Your home or apartment Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Your job Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Your leisure activities Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied "How satisfied are you with ..." All Adults LA Metro Region SF Bay Area Central Valley 53% 38 9 50% 40 10 52% 39 9 60% 34 6 52% 38 10 50% 37 13 51% 39 10 54% 37 9 47% 41 12 45% 42 13 48% 40 12 44% 44 12 Ethnicity Latino Other 44% 44 12 56% 36 8 47% 42 11 53% 36 11 42% 46 12 48% 40 12 - 21 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. The findings of this survey, the second in the series, are based on a telephone survey of 2,008 California adult residents interviewed from May 1 to May 6, 1998. 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 four 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 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, as needed. 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 U.S. 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 2,008 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 1,557 voters is +/-2.5% and for the 960 likely voters is +/- 3%. 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 three geographic regions. “LA Metro” includes Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura counties. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma counties. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba counties. These three regions were chosen for analysis because they account for approximately 85 percent of the state population; moreover, the growth of the Central Valley has given it increasing political significance. We contrast the results for Latinos with results for “other” ethnic and racial groups. Latinos 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. Most of the "other" responses are non-Hispanic whites. We also contrast the opinions of Democrats and Republicans with "other" registered voters. The "other" category includes nonaffiliated voters and members of other political parties. In some cases we compare the PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted in 1996, 1997, and 1998 by the Pew Research Center, the National Opinion Research Center, and the Wall Street Journal and NBC News. In other cases we discuss differences between 1994 and 1998; the earlier data come from surveys of California voters conducted during the 1994 election cycle by Mark Baldassare for KCAL-TV News in Los Angeles and the California Business Roundtable. - 23 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: THE CHANGING POLITICAL LANDSCAPE OF CALIFORNIA MAY 1-6, 1998 2,008 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE [Responses recorded for first 15 questions are from likely voters. All other responses are from all adults.] First, I have a few questions about the June 2nd Primary. California is holding an open primary this year. That means voters are now able to vote for anyone they choose, regardless of the candidate’s party. 1. If the June Primary election for governor were being held today, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask "or someone else?") 19% Al Checchi, a Democrat 23 Gray Davis, a Democrat 8 Jane Harman, a Democrat 23 Dan Lungren, a Republican 2 or someone else (specify) 25 don't know 2. In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for governor? (if yes: in the past month ,whose ads have you seen the most?) 52% yes, Al Checchi 4 yes, Gray Davis 19 yes, Jane Harman 2 yes, Dan Lungren 0 yes, other answer 23 no 3. Next, if the June primary election for the U.S. Senate were being held today, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask "or someone else?") 39% Barbara Boxer, a Democrat 10 Matt Fong, a Republican 22 Darrell Issa, a Republican 2 or someone else (specify) 27 don't know 4. In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for the U.S. Senate? (if yes: in the past month, whose ads have you seen the most?) 0% yes, Barbara Boxer 1 yes, Matt Fong 19 yes, Daryl Issa 1 yes, other answer 79 no 5. People have different ideas about the qualifications they want when they vote for candidates for statewide office, such as Governor or U.S. Senator. Which of these is most important to you? (rotate a and b) (a) that the candidate has experience in elected office. (b) that the candidate has experience running a business. 46% experience in elected office 36 experience running a business 6 neither 7 both 5 don't know 6. People have different opinions on how candidates for statewide office should pay for their political campaigns. Which of these do you view most positively? (rotate a and b) (a) a candidate using mostly his or her own money to pay for political campaigning? (b) a candidate using mostly money collected from his or her supporters to pay for political campaigning? 34% own money 52 money from supporters 8 makes no difference 6 don't know 7. In deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor, how important to you are the candidates' performances in a public debate? 37% very important 48 somewhat important 13 not important 2 don't know 8. On another topic, Proposition 227, the “English Language in Public Schools” initiative on the June ballot, requires that all public school instruction be conducted in English. It provides short-term placement, usually for not more than one year, in English immersion programs for children not fluent in English. The measure would also provide 50 million dollars per year for ten years for English tutoring. If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 227? 67% yes 28 no 5 don't know - 25 - 9. How much do you know about current bilingual education programs in California's public schools? 24% great deal 47 fair amount 24 only a little 5 nothing 10. Do you approve or disapprove of allowing local school districts to choose their own approach to teaching children who are not fluent in English? 52% approve 42 disapprove 6 don't know 11. Proposition 226, the "Political Contributions by Employees, Union Members, and Foreign Entities" initiative on the June ballot, requires public and private employers and labor organizations to obtain permission from employees and members before withholding pay or using union dues or fees for political contributions. It also prohibits contributions to state and local candidates by foreign residents, governments, or entities. If the election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 226? 59% yes 33 no 8 don't know 12. Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of labor unions to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives? 50% approve 44 disapprove 6 don't know 13. Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of business corporations to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives? 55% approve 39 disapprove 6 don't know 14. On another topic – so far, how closely have you been following the news stories about the upcoming 1998 California elections? 13% very closely 48 fairly closely 32 not too closely 7 not at all closely 15. And how would you rate the job that news organizations are doing in reporting about the upcoming 1998 California elections? 4% excellent 31 good 42 fair 18 poor 5 don't know 16. Next, some questions about the state. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 56% right direction 34 wrong direction 10 don't know 17. Overall, thinking about the quality of life in California today, do you think things are going ... 13% very well 57 somewhat well 21 somewhat badly 9 very badly 18. On another issue – in your opinion, how much of a problem is crime in California today? Is it a ... 66% big problem 28 somewhat of a problem 4 not much of a problem 2 don't know 19. In the past few years, do you think the crime rate in California has increased, decreased, or stayed about the same? 46% increased 24 decreased 28 stayed about the same 2 don't know 20. And how safe do you feel walking alone in your neighborhood at night? 33% very safe 33 somewhat safe 17 somewhat unsafe 16 very unsafe 1 don't know 21. Turning to another issue, how much of a problem is the quality of education in kindergarten through twelfth grade public schools in California today? Is it a ... 46% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 14 not much of a problem 7 don't know - 26 - 25. How do you rate the job performance of President Bill Clinton at this time? 21% excellent 37 good 25 fair 16 poor 1 don't know 26. How do you rate the job performance of the legislative branch of the federal government at this time, including the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives? 3% excellent 30 good 49 fair 15 poor 3 don't know 27. How do you rate the job performance of California Governor Pete Wilson at this time? 6% excellent 28 good 34 fair 29 poor 3 don't know 28. And how do you rate the job performance of the California Legislature at this time, including the State Senate and Assembly? 2% excellent 28 good 52 fair 13 poor 5 don't know 29. What level of government do you trust the most to spend your tax money wisely? (rotate) 10% federal government 17 state government 22 county government 31 city government 15 none of the above 0 other answer 5 don't know Now, I'm going to read you some pairs of statements. As I read each pair, please tell me whether the first statement or the second statement comes closer to your own views – even if neither is exactly right. The first pair is ... (read and rotate) 30. (a) Government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest. (b) Government regulation of business usually does more harm than good. 54% government regulation necessary 43 government regulation more harm 3 neither, don't know 31. (a) Stricter environmental laws and regulations cost too many jobs and hurt the economy. (b) Stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. 37% stricter environmental laws cost jobs 58 stricter environmental laws worth cost 5 neither, don't know 32. (a) Homosexuality is a way of life that should be accepted by society. (b) Homosexuality is a way of life that should be discouraged by society. 55% homosexuality should be accepted 40 homosexuality should be discouraged 5 neither, don't know 33. If the government had a choice between reducing taxes or spending more on social programs like health care, social security, and unemployment benefits, which do you think it should do? (rotate) (a) reduce taxes, even if this means spending less on social programs. (b) spend more on social programs, even if this means higher taxes. 44% Reduce taxes, spend less 51 Spend more, raise taxes 5 don't know 34. And which of the following best represents your views about abortion – The choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor; abortion should be legal only in cases where pregnancy results from rape or incest or when the life of the mother is at risk; or abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. 61% up to woman and doctor 26 legal in some cases 12 illegal in all circumstances 1 don't know 35. On another topic, are you currently registered to vote as a Democrat, a Republican, another party or independent, or are you not registered to vote? 37% Democrat 29 Republican 14 other party, independent 20 not registered 36. Would you consider yourself to be politically: 8% very liberal 21 somewhat liberal 34 middle-of-the-road 25 somewhat conservative - 27 - 10 very conservative 2 don't know 37. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics? 15% a great deal 47 fair amount 31 only a little 7 none 0 don't know 43. 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?)? 14% yes, very concerned 12 yes, somewhat concerned 73 no 1 already lost job 38. Would you say you follow what’s going on in government and public affairs … 34% most of the time 39 some of the time 19 only now and then 6 hardly at all 2 never 0 don't know 39. Where do you get most of your information about what's going on in politics today? From … (rotate) 33% newspapers 41 television 10 radio 3 magazines 8 talking to people 3 the Internet or on-line services 1 other 1 don't know 40. How often would you say you vote? 47% always 24 nearly always 10 part of the time 6 seldom 13 never 0 other 0 don't know 41. On another topic, as far as your own situation, would you say you (and your family) are financially better off or worse off or just about the same as you were a year ago? 36% better off 13 worse off 51 same 42. How would you describe your current standard of living? Would you say it is ... 14% more than comfortable 73 comfortable 13 not comfortable 44. Next, a few questions about your region. How much of a problem is transportation and traffic congestion in your region? Is it a ... 33% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 31 not a problem 1 don't know 45. How much of a problem is population growth and development in your region? 27% big problem 38 somewhat of a problem 34 not a problem 1 don't know 46. And how much of a problem is air pollution, water pollution, and other forms of environmental pollution in your region? 27% big problem 46 somewhat of a problem 26 not a problem 1 don't know - 28 - How satisfied are you with each of the following ... (rotate) 47. The house or apartment in which you live? 53% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 9 not satisfied 48. Your job? [excludes those not working] 52% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 10 not satisfied 49. Your leisure activities? 47% very satisfied 41 somewhat satisfied 12 not satisfied 50. Taken all together, how would you say things are these days? Would you say you are ... 28% very happy 59 pretty happy 13 not too happy [51-60. Demographic Questions.] - 29 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee William Hauck, President, California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, Senior Associate, Claremont Graduate University Monica Lozano, Associate Publisher and Executive Editor, La Opinión Jerry Lubenow, Director of Publications, Institute of Governmental Studies, University of California, Berkeley Donna Lucas, President, Nelson Communications Max Neiman, Director, Center for Social and Behavioral Research, University of California, Riverside Carol J. Ramsey, Program Director, The James Irvine Foundation Jerry Roberts, Managing Editor, San Francisco Chronicle Dan Rosenheim, News Director, KRON-TV Cathy Taylor, Editorial Page Editor, Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson, Vice Chairman of the Board, The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside, President, Great Valley Center - 28 -" } ["___content":protected]=> string(102) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(107) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/ppic-statewide-survey-californians-and-their-government-may-1998/s_598mbs/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8111) ["ID"]=> int(8111) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:34:57" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3215) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(8) "S 598MBS" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(8) "s_598mbs" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(12) "S_598MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "229095" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(68173) "Preface California is now in the midst of historic changes that will profoundly affect the future of the state. To improve understanding of these changes and their effect on the political status quo, PPIC will conduct a series of large-scale public opinion surveys during the 1998 election cycle. This report presents the results of the second of these statewide surveys. The first was conducted in April. The purpose of the surveys is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces at work in California elections and in shaping the state's public policies. The surveys are intended to provide the public and policymakers with relevant—advocacyfree—information on the following: • Californians' overall impressions and concerns about the economy, population growth, governance, and quality of life and about key issues such as education, welfare, and immigration. • Differences in social and political attitudes among different demographic, age, and economic groups and across different regions of the state. • The characteristics of groups that are shaping the state's elections and policy debates. • The political attitudes underlying "voter distrust" of government and low voter turnout and how both affect the outcomes of elections and the success of ballot initiatives. Additional copies of this report or the April report may be ordered by calling (800) 232-5343 [mainland U.S.] or (415) 291-4415 [Canada, Hawaii, overseas]. Press Release MAJORITY SAY CANDIDATE DEBATES WILL INFLUENCE THEIR VOTE IN PRIMARY, SURVEY FINDS People Care How Candidates Fund Their Campaigns Latino Support for Bilingual Education Initiative Waning SAN FRANCISCO, California, May 11, 1998 — Eighty-five percent of California's likely voters say that candidate performances in public debates will influence how they vote, according to a statewide survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California. Ironically, although more Californians get their political news from television than from any other source (41%), no major network has agreed to televise the first gubernatorial debate, scheduled for Wednesday, May 13. The second in a series of large-scale surveys conducted by Mark Baldassare shows Democrat Gray Davis with 23%, Al Checchi with 19%, and Jane Harman with 8% support among likely voters. Republican Dan Lungren receives 23%. While support for Checchi and Lungren remains unchanged since PPIC’s April survey, Davis has gained 11 points and Harman has dropped 10. Crossover voting continues to influence the race, with Democratic candidates receiving one in four Republican votes. Latino voters still favor Checchi by a wide margin. In the U.S. Senate race, Darrell Issa has expanded his lead over Matt Fong, his challenger for the Republican nomination. Among likely voters, Issa receives 22% — an 8-point gain since April — and Fong 10%. Democrat Barbara Boxer has lost four points since the last survey and now receives 39%. She is backed by a majority of Latino voters (53%). Subtle but important shifts are under way in voter preferences about candidate qualifications and campaign financing. By 46% to 36%, likely voters now say experience in elected office is a more important qualification than experience running a business. One month ago, voters were almost equally divided when asked which qualifications they value more in candidates for statewide office. Last month’s survey also found that six in 10 California voters were indifferent about self-funding. Now, the current survey indicates that when voters are asked to choose, they prefer a candidate who collects money from supporters rather than one who uses personal wealth to finance a campaign, by a fairly wide margin (52% to 34%). “As Election Day draws nearer and more voters tune in, they seem to be returning to more traditional political values about candidates and losing enthusiasm for some of the more controversial initiatives,” said Mark Baldassare, director of the PPIC Statewide Survey. California voters continue to strongly support Proposition 227, the initiative that would end most bilingual education programs in public schools, but support has slipped since President Clinton announced his opposition and the state legislature passed a bill authorizing local school districts to make decisions about bilingual programs. Sixty-seven percent of likely voters support the initiative — an 8-point drop from last month’s survey — while 28% are opposed. Latino voters, who favored the initiative just one month ago (58% to 39%), are now equally divided (48% to 48%). Press Release Proposition 226, while still favored by a majority of likely voters, has also lost support. The initiative, which would require that unions obtain permission from their members before using union dues for political contributions, is supported by 59% of likely voters, with 33% opposed. PPIC’s April survey showed 67% in favor and 25% opposed. Voters more strongly support placing restrictions on corporate campaign contributions (55%) than on union contributions (50%). A majority of Latino voters (51%) oppose Proposition 226. Latinos differ from Californians as a whole on a number of diverse issues. They are more willing to increase funding for social programs, even if it means increasing taxes (58% to 51%). A greater number believe that government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest (63% to 54%). Latinos are less likely to support a woman’s right to choose: 42% are in favor, compared with 61% of all Californians. However, contrary to received wisdom, Latinos are as likely as Californians as a whole to believe that homosexuality should be accepted by society (55% to 58%). These findings support the conclusions of the April survey that California Latinos defy political, social, and economic labels. The April survey also revealed that crime and education, in that order, were Californians’ top public policy concerns. Responses to follow-up questions in the current survey indicate that Californians see crime and the quality of schools as very serious problems facing the state. Ninetyfour percent of Californians believe that crime is a problem, with 66% calling it a “big problem.” Although concern about crime pervades all regions of the state, residents in the Central Valley are more likely to consider it a big problem than San Francisco Bay area residents (76% to 53%). Despite recent reports of falling crime rates throughout the state, 46% of Californians believe that the crime rate is rising. Paradoxically, when asked how safe they feel in their own neighborhoods at night, the majority of Californians in all regions of the state say they feel very to somewhat safe. Nearly 80% of Californians also believe that the quality of K-12 education in the state is a problem, with 46% calling it a big problem. San Francisco Bay area residents express the most serious concern: 53% believe it is a big problem. Interestingly, parents of public school children are slightly less concerned than the population as a whole: 42% call K-12 education a big problem. Although they believe public education is in bad shape, residents are not in favor of making it easier for local school districts to raise taxes. Fifty-six percent oppose allowing a simple majority, rather than the current two-thirds requirement, to approve local tax increases for schools. Residents are more supportive of another proposal: 58% are in favor of providing parents with tax-funded vouchers. Parents of public school children overwhelmingly support this option (67% to 29%). The purpose of the PPIC Statewide Survey is to develop an in-depth profile of the social, economic, and political forces at work in California elections and in shaping the state’s public policies. The surveys are intended to provide the public and policymakers with relevant information on the following: Californians’ overall impressions of key policy issues and of quality of life; differences in social and political attitudes among demographic groups and across different regions of the state; the characteristics of groups that are shaping the state’s elections and policy debates; and the political attitudes underlying “voter distrust” of government and low voter turnout. A minimum of four surveys will be conducted and released during the 1998 election cycle. The first survey was released in April 1998. Findings are based on a telephone survey of 2,008 California adult residents interviewed from May 1 to May 6, 1998. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for the 1,557 voters is +/- 2.5% and for the 960 likely - ii - Press Release voters is +/- 3%. For additional information on survey methodology, see page 23 of the attached report. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow at PPIC. He is founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey at UC Irvine. For over two decades, he has conducted surveys for major news organizations, including the Orange County Edition of the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, KCAL-TV, KRON-TV, and the San Francisco Chronicle. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to independent, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect the lives of Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report appears in full on PPIC’s Web site (www.ppic.org). Media interested in contacting survey respondents for reinterview should call Abby Cook at 415/291-4436. - iii - California Primary Governor's Race Voter preferences for Governor have shifted since our April survey. The cross-over voting made possible by the new blanket/open primary rules continues to affect the Democratic Party's nomination. Al Checchi continues to attract a larger percent than his Democratic rivals of likely Republican voters but has lost the lead to Gray Davis, while Jane Harman has fallen into third place. Among voters most likely to go to the polls in June, Davis has 23 percent, Checchi receives 19 percent, and Harman 8 percent. Republican candidate Dan Lungren has 23 percent of the vote. Two percent are supporting other candidates and 25 percent of likely voters are undecided. Davis has surged ahead with an 11-point gain since our April survey, while Harman's support has dropped by 10 points. Support for Al Checchi and Dan Lungren are unchanged. Davis has a comfortable lead over Checchi and Harman among likely Democratic voters. Independent voters are also more likely to support Davis than any other candidate. Half of Republicans say they will support Dan Lungren; however, one-quarter would vote for one of the three Democrats, and one in four are still undecided. Checchi draws his strongest support in the Los Angeles area, Davis is most popular in the San Francisco Bay area, and Lungren leads all other candidates in the Central Valley. Among Latinos, Checchi continues to receive much stronger support than any other candidate. Men give equal favor to Davis and Lungren (25% each), while fewer support Checchi (18%), Harman (6%), or others (3%). Women are dividing their support fairly equally among Davis (22%), Lungren (20%), and Checchi (19%), with fewer saying they will vote for Harman (10%) and others (2%). "If the June Primary election for Governor were being held today, who would you vote for?" (Likely Voters) Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other Don't know April 19% 12 18 23 3 25 May 19% 23 8 23 2 25 (Likely Voters) (May) Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other Don't know Dem 25% 33 12 4 2 24 Party Rep 13% 9 4 50 1 23 Other 15% 28 7 10 7 33 LA Metro 26% 19 6 24 1 24 Region SF Bay Area 9% 37 11 13 4 26 Central Valley 17% 26 7 32 1 17 Ethnicity Latino 39% 23 7 10 3 18 Other 15% 24 8 25 2 26 -1- California Primary Television Advertising for the Governor's Race Awareness of television commercials remains high in the race for Governor, as more candidates have begun to advertise and the tone has become more negative. Three in four likely voters report seeing candidates' television ads in the past month, the same level of awareness that was evident in the April survey. Checchi's ads continue to be the ones that voters have seen the most. One in five mentions Harman's ads. Only a few voters have noticed ads by the front-runners, Davis and Lungren, both of whom have begun to advertise only in the last few weeks. Voters across all parties, regions, and ethnic and racial groups recall seeing the Checchi ads more than others. Republicans recall Harman's ads more often than Democrats, and people in the Central Valley recall them more than people in other regions. Recall of Checchi's ads is highest among likely Latino voters (62 percent). "In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for Governor?" (If yes, "whose ads have you seen the most?") (Likely Voters) YES Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other answer NO April 79% 56 1 22 0 0 21 May 77% 52 4 19 2 0 23 (Likely Voters) (May) YES Al Checchi Gray Davis Jane Harman Dan Lungren Other answer NO Dem Party Rep Other LA Metro 55% 5 18 1 0 21 45% 4 23 4 0 24 56% 3 12 1 1 27 51% 4 18 2 1 24 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 59% 5 14 0 0 22 51% 3 25 3 0 18 62% 2 15 1 1 19 49% 5 20 2 0 24 -2- California Primary U.S. Senate Race Although Senator Barbara Boxer retains a sizeable lead over all other candidates for the U.S. Senate seat, that lead has slipped slightly. At the same time, businessman Darrell Issa has greatly widened his lead over Matt Fong for the Republican nomination. Issa's support has increased by 8 points since the April survey, while Fong's is unchanged. Among likely voters, 22 percent favor Issa and 10 percent support Fong, while 2 percent support other candidates. Four in 10 voters say they will cast their ballots for incumbent U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer. About one in four voters are still undecided. Issa has a 20-point lead over Fong among Republicans. One in four independent voters say they will vote for a Republican candidate, with Issa receiving more of their support than Fong. One in eight Democrats say they will vote for a Republican, with Issa edging out Fong in this group as well. Boxer has solid support among Democrats (61%) and a sizable percentage of independents (42%). Women support Boxer (43%) over Issa (19%), Fong (9%), and others (1%). Men also favor Boxer (35%) over Issa (25%), Fong (12%), and others (2%). Boxer has the strongest support on her home turf in the San Francisco Bay area. Issa does well in the Central Valley and Los Angeles area, while Fong outpolls Issa in the San Francisco Bay area. Latino voters strongly support Boxer. "If the June Primary election for the U.S. Senate were being held today, who would you vote for?" (Likely Voters) Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other Don't know April 43% 9 14 5 29 May 39% 10 22 2 27 (Likely Voters) (May) Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other Don't know Dem 61% 4 9 1 25 Party Rep 11% 19 39 1 30 Other 42% 9 17 5 27 LA Metro 37% 8 25 2 28 Region SF Bay Area 56% 12 5 1 26 Central Valley 33% 12 28 1 26 Ethnicity Latino 53% 8 12 2 25 Other 37% 11 23 2 27 -3- California Primary Television Advertising for the U.S. Senate Race Television advertising for the California Senate race continues to attract far less attention than advertising for the Governor's race. Only one in five likely voters recalls seeing television advertisements for the Senate candidates, and Issa's are the most recalled. (It should be noted that, to date, Issa is the only Senate candidate who has advertised on television.) These numbers have changed very little since the April survey. There are no party, regional, or ethnic-group differences. "In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for the U.S. Senate?" (If yes, "whose ads have you seen the most?") (Likely Voters) YES Barbara Boxer Matt Fong Darrell Issa Other answer NO April 17% 0 1 15 1 83 May 21% 0 1 19 1 79 Importance of Debates The four candidates for Governor will have their first debate on May 13, and it could play a crucial role in the outcome. Eighty-five percent of likely voters say that the candidates' performances in a public debate are important to them in deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor. Significantly, 37 percent say that public debates are very important to them. The public debate has even more significance for Democratic voters, who are choosing among three candidates for their party's nomination. Forty-five percent of likely Democratic voters say that the public debate among the candidates is very important to them in deciding whom to support in the June Primary. Among Republicans, only 29 percent say it is important. Among independents, 32 percent say that the candidates' performance in a public debate is important in casting their vote for Governor. "In deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor, how important to you are the candidates' performances in a public debate?" Very important Somewhat important Not important Don't know Likely Voters 37% 48 13 2 Democrats 45% 46 7 2 -4- California Primary Candidate Qualifications The survey shows a shift in the qualifications California voters value most in candidates for statewide office. By a 10-point margin, likely voters are now saying that they prefer someone with experience in elected office to someone with experience in business. One month earlier, California voters were almost equally divided when asked about which qualifications they value more in candidates for Governor or U.S. Senator. Democrats are now favoring experience in office over experience in business by a wide margin (59% to 24%), while Republicans (51% to 32%) and to a lesser extent independents (40% to 35%) are still more likely to look for business experience. Women value experience in office more (49% to 32%), while men are evenly split (42% to 40%). "People have different ideas about the qualifications they want when they vote for candidates for statewide office, such as Governor or U.S. Senator. Which of these is most important to you, (a) that the candidate has experience in elected office, or (b) that the candidate has experience running a business?" (Likely Voters) Experience in elected office Experience running a business Neither Both Don't know April 43% 40 6 7 4 May 46% 36 6 7 5 Campaign Spending Voters are sending mixed signals about statewide candidates who fund their own campaigns. Last month, we found that six in 10 California voters were indifferent about self-funding. The current survey indicates that by a fairly wide margin (52% to 34%), voters prefer a candidate for statewide office who takes the conventional route of collecting money from supporters to one who funds his or her own campaign. Moreover, very few are now indifferent to this issue. There are no differences across political parties. Bay area voters more likely to favor candidates who use contributions (61% vs. 21%). These survey findings come at a time when two candidates who have gone the conventional route of campaign financing, Democrat Davis and Republican Lungren, are leading in the race for Governor. However, in the U.S. Senate race, the leading Republican candidate, Issa, is self-funding. "People have different opinions on how candidates for statewide office should pay for their political campaigns. Which of these do you view most positively, (a) a candidate using mostly his or her own money to pay for political campaigning, or (b) a candidate using mostly money collected from his or her supporters to pay for political campaigning?" Own money Money from supporters Makes no difference Don't know Likely Voters 34% 52 8 6 Democrats 35% 53 6 6 -5- California Primary Proposition 227: Bilingual Education California voters continue to strongly support Proposition 227, the initiative that would end most bilingual education in the public schools. However, support has slipped since President Clinton announced his opposition and the California Legislature has passed legislation that would leave the choice up to local school districts. Two in three say they would vote yes on Proposition 227, while about one in four would vote no. Support has dropped 8 points since the April survey. Republicans overwhelmingly support the measure. A majority of Democrats and San Francisco Bay area voters are in favor of it. Of particular note, support for Proposition 227 among Latino voters has eroded since the April survey, dropping from 58 percent to 48 percent. Latinos are now evenly divided on ending bilingual education programs. Despite the erosion of support, likely voters are not much more informed about the current bilingual education programs in California's public schools than they were a month ago. Only one in four say they know a great deal, 47 percent say they know a fair amount, and nearly three in 10 say they know little or nothing. Latinos are much more likely to say they know a great deal about the school programs than other voters (41% to 21%). As stated above, the Legislature has approved and the Governor is now considering legislation that provides an alternative to Proposition 227. If passed, this legislation would allow local school districts to choose their own approach to teaching children who are not fluent in English. Fifty-two percent of likely voters approve of this proposal, while 42 percent disapprove, and 6 percent are undecided. Proposition 227 currently has more support and, if passed, would take precedence over the legislation. "If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 227?" (Likely Voters) Yes No Don't know April 75% 21 4 May 67% 28 5 (Likely Voters) (May) Yes No Don't know Dem 57% 35 8 Party Rep 80% 17 3 Other 64% 32 4 LA Metro 69% 26 5 Region SF Bay Area 58% 37 5 Central Valley 70% 24 6 Ethnicity Latinos 48% 48 4 Others 71% 24 5 "How much do you know about current bilingual education programs in California's public schools?" (Likely Voters) Great deal Fair amount Little/nothing April 20% 47 33 May 24% 47 29 -6- California Primary Proposition 226: Campaign Reform California voters may be losing interest in passing Proposition 226, which would require that unions obtain permission from their members before using union dues for political contributions and would ban foreign contributions to state and local candidates. Fifty-nine percent of voters now say they support Proposition 226, and one-in-three likely voters are opposed to this ballot measure. The number saying they would vote yes on Proposition 226 has dropped by 8 points in one month. Less than 50 percent of Democrats now support Proposition 226. Republicans still strongly favor this measure, while a majority of independent voters are also in favor. There are no differences across regions. Interestingly, a majority of Latino voters are now opposed to placing these restrictions on using union dues for political contributions. Possible erosion in support for Proposition 226 is suggested by the response to a question about placing restrictions on labor unions' ability to make political contributions (aside from the issue of getting members' permission). Likely voters favor restrictions by a six-point margin. One month ago, they favored union restrictions by a 12-point margin. Republicans (60%) are much more likely to approve of union restrictions than are Democrats (43%) or independents (48%). There is, in fact, more support for placing restrictions on the ability of business corporations to contribute to political candidates and initiatives. Fifty-five percent of likely voters approve of corporate restrictions, while 39 percent disapprove and 6 percent are undecided. There are no differences between Democrats, Republicans, and independents. "If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 226?" (Likely Voters) Yes No Don't know April 67% 25 8 May 59% 33 8 (Likely Voters) (May) Yes No Don't know Party Dem 48% 43 9 Rep 73% 20 7 Other 58% 33 9 LA Metro 59% 34 7 Region SF Bay Area 57% 32 11 Central Valley 61% 31 8 Ethnicity Latinos 44% 51 5 Others 62% 30 8 "Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of labor unions to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives?" (Likely Voters) Approve Disapprove Don't know April 53% 41 6 May 50% 44 6 -7- California Primary Media Watch Californians are a little more tuned in to news stories about the elections than they were one month ago, and they are warming up to the job that the news organizations are doing in covering the candidates and initiatives. Six in 10 likely voters are following the election news stories either very or fairly closely, while four in 10 are paying little or no attention to the news coverage of the 1998 California elections. Compared to one month ago, following the election news either very or fairly closely has increased by 9 points. Yet, only 13 percent say they are following the news about the election very closely, with about one month to go before the June 2nd Primary. Thirty-five percent of likely voters give the news organizations either excellent or good marks on reporting about the 1998 California elections. Four in 10 think they are doing a fair job, while about one in six give them poor marks. Positive ratings of news coverage on the elections have improved by 10 points since the April survey. Still, only about one in three are giving positive grades for the news stories about the upcoming elections. Interestingly, Democrats (40%) are more likely to give the news organizations excellent or good ratings than are Republicans (29%) or independents and other party voters (31%). "How closely have you been following the news stories about the upcoming 1998 California elections?" (Likely Voters) Very closely Fairly closely Not too closely Not at all closely April 9% 43 39 9 May 13% 48 32 7 "How would you rate the job that news organizations are doing in reporting about the upcoming 1998 California elections?" (Likely Voters) Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know April 3% 22 46 24 5 May 4% 31 42 18 5 -8- California Policy Issues Problem Seriousness In our April survey, crime and education topped the list of public policy concerns among Californians. When asked to name the single biggest problem facing the state, 28 percent cited crime, while 20 percent said education. Follow-up questions in the current survey indicate that many Californians see crime and the quality of public schools as very serious problems facing the state of California, although crime is more worrisome. Two in three adult residents say that crime is a "big problem" in California today. Another three in 10 say it is "somewhat of a problem," while only 4 percent say it is "not much of a problem." Across regions, three in four of the Central Valley residents say that crime in the state is a big problem, compared to two in three in the Los Angeles region and about one-half in the San Francisco Bay area. There are no significant differences between Latinos and others. Republicans (71%) are more likely than Democrats (65%) or other voters (56%) to say that crime is a big problem. Forty-six percent of California adults think that quality of education in K-12 public schools is a big problem in the state today. One in three describe this issue as somewhat of a problem. Only one in seven say it is not a problem at all. Public school parents are slightly less likely (42 percent) to rate education as a big problem. A little more than one-half of San Francisco Bay area residents are most likely to say that the quality of public schools is a big problem, while those in the Los Angeles region are slightly less likely to have this view. About four in 10 in the Central Valley say the public schools are a big problem for the state. Latinos are less likely than others to say that the quality of California's K-12 public education is a big problem (36% to 49%). There are no differences by political party affiliation. "In your opinion, how much of a problem is ________ / ________ in California today?" Crime Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know Quality of K-12 Education Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not much of a problem Don't know All Adults 66% 28 4 2 46% 33 14 7 LA Metro 68% 25 4 3 48% 31 14 7 Region SF Bay Area 53% 42 5 0 53% 34 8 5 Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 76% 19 3 2 62% 24 5 9 67% 29 3 1 39% 37 17 7 36% 34 26 4 49% 34 10 7 -9- California Policy Issues Crime Perceptions Despite published reports that crime is decreasing, most Californians believe that crime rates have been rising in the state for the past few years. Nevertheless, most feel safe walking in their own neighborhoods. Nearly half think that crime rates have increased in California in the past few years. Another quarter view them as staying about the same. Only one in four believes that crime rates have been declining. Across groups and regions, Central Valley residents are the most likely to say that crime rates have been rising in the past few years. There are no differences between Latinos and others. Two in three Californians say they feel safe walking alone in their neighborhood at night, while one in three say they feel very safe. One in three say they feel unsafe, with one in six saying they feel very unsafe. Residents in the San Francisco Bay area (76%) are more likely to say they feel safe than those living in either the Los Angeles region (62%) or the Central Valley (66%). By a small margin, Californians feel safer walking around their neighborhood today than they did four years ago. In a KCAL-TV News Survey of Californians conducted in March 1994, 60 percent said they felt safe and 40 percent said they felt unsafe. The results of the current survey reflect a six-point improvement in perceptions of safety from neighborhood crime. "In the past few years, do you think the crime rate in California has increased or decreased or stayed about the same?" All Adults Increased Decreased Stayed about the same Don't know 46% 24 28 2 LA Metro 43% 27 28 2 Region SF Bay Area 45% 23 30 2 Central Valley 53% 20 25 2 Ethnicity Latino 47% 23 28 2 Other 46% 24 28 2 "How safe do you feel walking alone in your neighborhood at night?" Very safe Somewhat safe Somewhat unsafe Very unsafe Don't know All Adults 33% 33 17 16 1 LA Metro 29% 33 18 19 1 Region SF Bay Area 38% 38 13 10 1 Central Valley 34% 32 18 15 1 Ethnicity Latino 23% 33 20 23 1 Other 36% 33 16 14 1 - 10 - California Policy Issues Education Reforms Voters do not appear eager to change the requirement that local school taxes must pass with a super majority rather than a simple majority vote. At the same time, many favor increasing school choice with tax-supported vouchers. Fewer than four in 10 Californians favor allowing local school districts to raise local taxes with a simple majority instead of a two-thirds vote. This proposal is supported by a bare majority of voters in the San Francisco Bay area. In other regions and among all ethnic groups, a majority of adults oppose this reform measure, including public school parents (55 percent). Voter support for changing the super majority requirement does not reach a majority among Democrats (46%), Republicans (32%) or other registered voters (40%). Nearly six in 10 adults favor the concept of providing parents with tax-funded vouchers to send their children to any public, private, or parochial school they choose. About one in three are opposed to school vouchers. Public support is strongest in the Los Angeles region and weakest in the Central Valley. Nearly two in three Latinos favor school vouchers, reflecting higher support than among most other residents, except public school parents (67 percent). Republicans (63%) are more supportive of school vouchers than Democrats (52%) or other voters (53%). "Do you favor or oppose allowing local school districts to raise local taxes with a simple majority instead of two-thirds vote?" Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 38% 56 6 LA Metro 35% 59 6 Region SF Bay Area 52% 44 4 Central Valley 37% 56 7 Ethnicity Latino 36% 56 8 Other 39% 56 5 "Do you favor or oppose providing parents with tax-funded vouchers to send their children to any public, private, or parochial school they choose?" Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 58% 37 5 LA Metro 61% 34 5 Region SF Bay Area 56% 39 5 Central Valley 53% 40 7 Ethnicity Latino 63% 31 6 Other 57% 38 5 - 11 - California Policy Issues Quality of Life Californians are feeling good about the state of their state. Seven in 10 say things are going well in California, although only one in eight say that things are going very well. Three in 10 say things are going badly, with one in 11 saying that things are going very badly. There are no differences across regions, nor are there variations between Latinos and others. This is a remarkable change from the public's mood four years ago. Then, 37 percent thought that things were going well, and 63 percent thought that they were going badly. These results, from a KCAL-TV News survey of Californians in 1994, are nearly the reverse of those reported today. "Overall, thinking about the quality of life in California today, do you think things are going ..." Very well Somewhat well Somewhat badly Very badly All Adults 13% 57 21 9 LA Metro 14% 56 21 9 Region SF Bay Area 14% 55 24 7 Central Valley 10% 64 19 7 Ethnicity Latino 14% 59 18 9 Other 13% 57 22 8 Mood of the State The mood of the state today is unchanged from our April survey. Most Californians remain upbeat about the direction of the state. Fifty-six percent say that things in the state are headed in the right direction, while 34 percent feel that the state is on the wrong track. There are no differences across regions of the state. Latinos are as likely as other residents to express optimism. Four years ago, only 27 percent thought that the state was headed in the right direction, while 60 percent believed it was going the wrong way (May 1994 survey of Californians for KCAL-TV News by Mark Baldassare). "Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?" Right direction Wrong direction Don't know All Adults 56% 34 10 LA Metro 56% 35 9 Region SF Bay Area 55% 36 9 Central Valley 57% 33 10 Ethnicity Latino 59% 33 8 Other 56% 35 9 - 12 - Political Trends Job Performance Californians give mixed reviews to political leaders and legislative bodies. Most give high ratings to President Clinton's overall job performance, despite ongoing investigations into his actions. Six in 10 say he is doing an excellent or good job as President, while one in four say he is doing a fair job. Only one in six rates his performance as poor. These ratings vary by party affiliation. Most Democrats (75%) give him excellent or good marks, compared to about half of the independent voters (47%) and far fewer Republicans (33%). Californians are much less generous in evaluating Congress and the state Legislature. One in three residents say the U.S. Congress is doing an excellent or good job. Three in 10 give the California Legislature positive grades. Most residents give the state and federal legislative branches fair grades, while about one in six give poor marks to the U.S. Congress and the state Legislature. The ratings of the Republican-controlled Congress and the Democratic-controlled state Legislature do not vary across Republicans, Democrats, and independent voters. Governor Wilson gets more negative scores than Clinton, the Congress, or the California Legislature. One in three Californians give Pete Wilson either excellent or good scores for his performance as Governor. One in three say he is doing a fair job. About three in 10 give him poor marks. Like the President's ratings, the Governor's marks vary by party affiliation. Most Republicans give the Governor excellent or good grades (52%), compared to far fewer Democrats (24%) and independent voters (30%). President Clinton's ratings are much better today than they were four years ago, when 43 percent gave him excellent or good ratings in a KCAL-TV News Survey conducted in May 1994 by Mark Baldassare. In that same survey, 28 percent gave positive grades to Governor Wilson, indicating a small improvement today in his positive job ratings. The state Legislature's positive ratings have improved from 14 percent to 30 percent. "How do you rate the job performance of ..." (All Adults) Excellent Good Fair Poor Don't know President Clinton 21% 37 25 16 1 U.S. Congress 3% 30 49 15 3 Governor Wilson 6% 28 34 29 3 California Legislature 2% 28 52 13 5 - 13 - Political Trends Fiscal Issues When it comes to fiscal issues, trust in government decreases with distance from the local level. Only one in 10 Californians choose the federal government as most trustworthy for spending tax money wisely. One in six say they trust the state government the most with their money. Half are most confident in their local governments, including their cities (31%) and counties (22%) in the fiscal realm. Fifteen percent say they don't trust the federal, state or local levels when it comes to spending tax money wisely. There are no differences across political party lines or regions. Residents are about equally divided when it comes to the prospect of reducing taxes or spending more on social programs such as health care, social security, and unemployment benefits. By a slight margin, Californians favor spending more on social programs – even if it means raising taxes – but 44 percent would rather cut taxes. A higher percentage of Californians than national residents would rather see government reduce taxes, even if this means spending less on social programs (44% to 31%). Latino residents are more likely than Californians as a whole to say that the government should spend more on social programs, even if this means higher taxes (58% to 51%). Republicans are much more open to the idea of reducing taxes (64%) than are Democrats (31%) or other voters (42%). "What level of government do you trust the most to spend your tax money wisely?" Federal government State government County government City government None of the above Other answer Don't know All Adults 10% 17 22 31 15 0 5 "If the government had a choice between reducing taxes or spending more on social programs like health care, social security, and unemployment benefits, which do you think it should do ..." Reduce taxes, spend less U.S.* 31% All Adults California 44% California Latinos 38% Spend more, raise taxes 47 51 58 Don't know, it depends 22 5 4 *Source: National survey conducted by National Opinion Research Center in 1996 - 14 - Political Trends Government Regulation While many Californians oppose increasing government taxes and spending, most are not against an active regulatory role for the government in the economy and the environment. Californians are more likely than the U.S. population as a whole to believe that government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest (54% to 45%). More Democrat (60%) than Republican (43%) and independent and other party voters (48%) express that opinion. Latinos are considerably less likely than Californians as a whole to think that government regulation of business usually does more harm than good (33% to 43%). Most Californians believe that stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. Central Valley residents (45%) are more likely than those living in the Los Angeles region (35%) and the San Francisco Bay area (30%) to believe that environmental laws harm the economy. Republicans (42%) are also more likely than Democrats (35%) and other voters (28%) to say that environmental regulations cost too many jobs. Latinos are a little less likely than Californians as a whole to say that stricter environmental regulations are worth the cost (52% to 58%). Government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest. Government regulation of business usually does more harm than good. U.S.* 45% 46 All Adults California California Latinos 54% 63% 43 33 Don't know 934 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1996 Stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. Stricter environmental laws and regulations cost too many jobs and hurt the economy. U.S.* 63% 30 All Adults California California Latinos 58% 52% 37 41 Don't know 7 57 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1996 - 15 - Political Trends Social Issues On the social issues considered, Californians as a whole respond very much like the U.S. population. They are somewhat more supportive in acceptance of gay lifestyles, but almost identical on abortion issues. Fifty-five percent say that homosexual lifestyles should be accepted in society, while 40 percent feel that homosexuality should be discouraged by society. Californians are more likely than the nation as a whole to say that homosexuality should be accepted (55% to 46%). However, Republicans (40%) are much less likely to express acceptance of gay lifestyles than are Democrats (64%) and other voters (58%). Residents in the San Francisco Bay area (65%) are more likely than those living in the Los Angeles region (55%) and the Central Valley (46%) to say that gay lifestyles should be accepted. Latinos are as likely as Californians as a whole to say that homosexuals should be accepted by society (58% to 55%). Six in 10 Californians favor leaving the decision on whether or not to have an abortion up to the woman and her doctor. One in four want abortion to be legal only in some cases, while one in eight want abortion to be illegal in all circumstances. The views of Californians are nearly identical to the nation as a whole on this topic. A majority of Democrats (73%), Republicans (53%), and other voters (68%) want the abortion choice to be left up to the woman and her doctor. A majority in the San Francisco Bay area (74%), the Los Angeles region (58%), and the Central Valley (57%) also hold this view. Latinos are less likely than Californians as a whole to say that the choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor (42% to 61%), while they are 11 points higher in their desire to make abortions legal in only some cases and 9 points higher in their preference to make abortions illegal in all circumstances. All Adults Homosexuality is a way of life that should be accepted by society. Homosexuality is a way of life that should be discouraged by society. Don't know U.S.* 46% 48 6 California 55% 40 5 *Source: National survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 1997 California Latinos 58% 37 5 All Adults The choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor. Abortion should be legal only in cases where pregnancy results from rape or incest or when the life of the mother is at risk. Abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. U.S.* 60% 26 11 California 61% 26 12 Don't know 31 *Source: National survey conducted by Wall Street Journal and NBC News in 1998 California Latinos 42% 37 21 0 - 16 - Political Trends Sources of Political Information Television is the major source of political news in California today. When asked where they get most of their information about politics, 41 percent of adult residents say television, 33 percent say newspapers, and 10 percent say the radio. Fewer than 10 percent mention either talking to people (8%), magazines and the Internet or on-line services (3% each), or other sources (1%). Residents of the San Francisco Bay area are the least likely to say they rely primarily on television and are more likely to report reading the newspaper, listening to the radio, and using the Internet for political news. Those living in the Central Valley rely more on television for political news than do the residents in the Los Angeles region. Latinos rely more than others on television for political news. One-half of Latinos say they depend mostly on television for political news, while one-quarter are informed by newspapers. There are no differences among Republicans, Democrats, and independent voters. However, voters are equally likely to rely mainly on newspapers (36%) or television (38%), while nonvoters are more likely to get most of their political news from television. "Where do you get most of your information about what's going on in politics today?" Newspapers Television Radio Magazines Talking to people Internet/on-line services Other Don't know All Adults 33% 41 10 3 8 3 1 1 LA Metro 33% 41 10 3 9 2 1 1 Region SF Bay Area 36% 32 14 4 6 6 1 1 Central Valley 30% 46 7 3 10 2 1 1 Ethnicity Latino 27% 50 8 3 8 2 0 2 Other 34% 39 10 4 8 3 1 1 - 17 - Social and Economic Trends Consumer Confidence Consumer confidence is unchanged from the April survey. California residents continue to feel positive about their personal financial situation. In this survey, 36 percent report being better off financially than they were a year ago, 13 percent worse off, and 51 percent the same. These perceptions are much more positive than perceptions four years ago, when 16 percent reported being better off, 32 percent worse off, and 52 percent the same (KCAL-TV News Survey of Californians in May 1994 by Mark Baldassare). In the current survey, three in four Californians report that their standard of living is comfortable. About one in eight report being more than comfortable, while a similar one in eight describe their standard of living as not comfortable. San Francisco Bay area residents are a little more likely than others to say their standard of living is more than comfortable. Latinos are less likely to say their current standard of living is more than comfortable. Still, the vast number of Californians cluster in the middle, describing their economic circumstances as comfortable. One in four residents are concerned about themselves or family members losing their jobs in the next year. Three in four are not at all worried about job losses. Four years ago, 30 percent of Californians worried about job losses, 6 percent said they had already lost their jobs, and 64 percent said they were not concerned about job losses (1994 California Business Roundtable Survey by Mark Baldassare). Thus, the numbers who are not concerned about job losses has increased by 9 points. Residents in the Los Angeles region are more likely to worry about job losses (29%), and Latinos are more likely than others to express concern about job losses (35% to 24%). Still, most California adults feel secure about current job conditions for themselves and the members of their family. More than comfortable Comfortable Not comfortable "How would you describe your current standard of living? Would you say it is ..." All Adults 14% 73 13 LA Metro 13% 72 15 Region SF Bay Area 17% 74 9 Central Valley 12% 74 14 Ethnicity Latino 8% 76 16 Other 16% 72 12 "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 of somewhat concerned?") Very concerned Somewhat concerned Not concerned Already lost job All Adults 14% 12 73 1 LA Metro 17% 12 70 1 Region SF Bay Area 12% 10 78 0 Central Valley 11% 12 75 2 Ethnicity Latino 20% 15 64 1 Other 13% 11 75 1 - 19 - Social and Economic Trends Regional Problems Traffic, population growth, and environmental pollution are rarely mentioned as the top issues facing the state. However, many residents see these three issues as creating big problems in the regions where they live. One in three residents identify traffic and transportation as a big problem in their region, and another third rate this issue as somewhat of a problem. Only one in three say that traffic is not a regional problem. Traffic congestion is seen as a big problem by more than half of San Francisco Bay area residents, compared to one in three in the Los Angeles region and one in six in the Central Valley. In the Central Valley, half the residents say that traffic congestion is not a problem at all, compared to only one in six in the San Francisco Bay area. Latinos are less likely than other Californians to see traffic congestion and transportation as big problems in their region. About one in four Californians rate population growth and development as a big problem in their region, while 38 percent say it is somewhat of a problem. About one-third say that growth is not a regional problem. San Francisco Bay Area residents are the most likely to say that growth is a big problem, while Central Valley residents are the most likely to perceive that growth is not a problem in their region. Latinos are a little less likely than others to perceive population growth and development as problematical for their region. Approximately one in four believes that air, water, and environmental pollution are big problems for their region, while nearly half say these issues pose at least somewhat of a problem. Only one in four think that pollution is not a problem at all in their region. Residents of the Los Angeles region are the most likely to see pollution as a big problem, while those living in the Central Valley are the least likely. Latinos are somewhat more likely than others to believe that pollution is a big regional problem. "How much of a problem is ________ / ________ / ________ in your region?" Transportation/traffic congestion Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know Population growth and development Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 33% 35 31 1 27% 38 34 1 LA Metro 34% 39 26 1 27% 38 34 1 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 54% 29 17 0 15% 34 50 1 27% 33 38 2 35% 35 29 1 38% 40 21 1 15% 42 43 0 21% 38 39 2 28% 39 32 1 - 20 - Social and Economic Trends Environmental pollution Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 27% 46 26 1 LA Metro 32% 45 22 1 Region SF Bay Area Central Valley Ethnicity Latino Other 25% 51 24 0 21% 50 29 0 32% 43 24 1 26% 47 27 0 Personal Happiness Most Californians say they are currently happy and express satisfaction with their housing, jobs, and leisure activities. Twenty-eight percent say they are very happy, 59 percent are pretty happy, and 13 percent are not happy. There are no differences in personal happiness by region or ethnic and racial group. One-half of California residents are very satisfied with their house or apartment, four in 10 are somewhat satisfied, and about one in 10 are not satisfied. Central Valley residents tend to be the most satisfied with their current housing. Fewer Latinos are very satisfied with their housing circumstances (44% to 56% of others). About one-half of California's employed residents say they are very satisfied with their jobs, four in 10 are somewhat satisfied and one in 10 are not satisfied. There are no differences by region. Latinos are slightly less likely to be highly satisfied with their current jobs. Californians are less satisfied with their leisure activities than they are with their housing and jobs. Forty-seven percent report that they are very satisfied with their leisure activities, 41 percent are somewhat satisfied, and 12 percent are not satisfied. There are no differences in leisure satisfaction across regions. Latinos are a little less likely than others to be highly satisfied with their leisure activities. Your home or apartment Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Your job Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Your leisure activities Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied "How satisfied are you with ..." All Adults LA Metro Region SF Bay Area Central Valley 53% 38 9 50% 40 10 52% 39 9 60% 34 6 52% 38 10 50% 37 13 51% 39 10 54% 37 9 47% 41 12 45% 42 13 48% 40 12 44% 44 12 Ethnicity Latino Other 44% 44 12 56% 36 8 47% 42 11 53% 36 11 42% 46 12 48% 40 12 - 21 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. The findings of this survey, the second in the series, are based on a telephone survey of 2,008 California adult residents interviewed from May 1 to May 6, 1998. 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 four 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 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, as needed. 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 U.S. 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 2,008 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 1,557 voters is +/-2.5% and for the 960 likely voters is +/- 3%. 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 three geographic regions. “LA Metro” includes Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura counties. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma counties. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba counties. These three regions were chosen for analysis because they account for approximately 85 percent of the state population; moreover, the growth of the Central Valley has given it increasing political significance. We contrast the results for Latinos with results for “other” ethnic and racial groups. Latinos 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. Most of the "other" responses are non-Hispanic whites. We also contrast the opinions of Democrats and Republicans with "other" registered voters. The "other" category includes nonaffiliated voters and members of other political parties. In some cases we compare the PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted in 1996, 1997, and 1998 by the Pew Research Center, the National Opinion Research Center, and the Wall Street Journal and NBC News. In other cases we discuss differences between 1994 and 1998; the earlier data come from surveys of California voters conducted during the 1994 election cycle by Mark Baldassare for KCAL-TV News in Los Angeles and the California Business Roundtable. - 23 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: THE CHANGING POLITICAL LANDSCAPE OF CALIFORNIA MAY 1-6, 1998 2,008 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE [Responses recorded for first 15 questions are from likely voters. All other responses are from all adults.] First, I have a few questions about the June 2nd Primary. California is holding an open primary this year. That means voters are now able to vote for anyone they choose, regardless of the candidate’s party. 1. If the June Primary election for governor were being held today, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask "or someone else?") 19% Al Checchi, a Democrat 23 Gray Davis, a Democrat 8 Jane Harman, a Democrat 23 Dan Lungren, a Republican 2 or someone else (specify) 25 don't know 2. In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for governor? (if yes: in the past month ,whose ads have you seen the most?) 52% yes, Al Checchi 4 yes, Gray Davis 19 yes, Jane Harman 2 yes, Dan Lungren 0 yes, other answer 23 no 3. Next, if the June primary election for the U.S. Senate were being held today, who would you vote for? (rotate names, then ask "or someone else?") 39% Barbara Boxer, a Democrat 10 Matt Fong, a Republican 22 Darrell Issa, a Republican 2 or someone else (specify) 27 don't know 4. In the past month, have you seen any television advertisements by the candidates for the U.S. Senate? (if yes: in the past month, whose ads have you seen the most?) 0% yes, Barbara Boxer 1 yes, Matt Fong 19 yes, Daryl Issa 1 yes, other answer 79 no 5. People have different ideas about the qualifications they want when they vote for candidates for statewide office, such as Governor or U.S. Senator. Which of these is most important to you? (rotate a and b) (a) that the candidate has experience in elected office. (b) that the candidate has experience running a business. 46% experience in elected office 36 experience running a business 6 neither 7 both 5 don't know 6. People have different opinions on how candidates for statewide office should pay for their political campaigns. Which of these do you view most positively? (rotate a and b) (a) a candidate using mostly his or her own money to pay for political campaigning? (b) a candidate using mostly money collected from his or her supporters to pay for political campaigning? 34% own money 52 money from supporters 8 makes no difference 6 don't know 7. In deciding who to vote for in the June Primary election for Governor, how important to you are the candidates' performances in a public debate? 37% very important 48 somewhat important 13 not important 2 don't know 8. On another topic, Proposition 227, the “English Language in Public Schools” initiative on the June ballot, requires that all public school instruction be conducted in English. It provides short-term placement, usually for not more than one year, in English immersion programs for children not fluent in English. The measure would also provide 50 million dollars per year for ten years for English tutoring. If the election were being held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 227? 67% yes 28 no 5 don't know - 25 - 9. How much do you know about current bilingual education programs in California's public schools? 24% great deal 47 fair amount 24 only a little 5 nothing 10. Do you approve or disapprove of allowing local school districts to choose their own approach to teaching children who are not fluent in English? 52% approve 42 disapprove 6 don't know 11. Proposition 226, the "Political Contributions by Employees, Union Members, and Foreign Entities" initiative on the June ballot, requires public and private employers and labor organizations to obtain permission from employees and members before withholding pay or using union dues or fees for political contributions. It also prohibits contributions to state and local candidates by foreign residents, governments, or entities. If the election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 226? 59% yes 33 no 8 don't know 12. Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of labor unions to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives? 50% approve 44 disapprove 6 don't know 13. Do you approve or disapprove of placing restrictions on the ability of business corporations to contribute to political candidates and ballot initiatives? 55% approve 39 disapprove 6 don't know 14. On another topic – so far, how closely have you been following the news stories about the upcoming 1998 California elections? 13% very closely 48 fairly closely 32 not too closely 7 not at all closely 15. And how would you rate the job that news organizations are doing in reporting about the upcoming 1998 California elections? 4% excellent 31 good 42 fair 18 poor 5 don't know 16. Next, some questions about the state. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 56% right direction 34 wrong direction 10 don't know 17. Overall, thinking about the quality of life in California today, do you think things are going ... 13% very well 57 somewhat well 21 somewhat badly 9 very badly 18. On another issue – in your opinion, how much of a problem is crime in California today? Is it a ... 66% big problem 28 somewhat of a problem 4 not much of a problem 2 don't know 19. In the past few years, do you think the crime rate in California has increased, decreased, or stayed about the same? 46% increased 24 decreased 28 stayed about the same 2 don't know 20. And how safe do you feel walking alone in your neighborhood at night? 33% very safe 33 somewhat safe 17 somewhat unsafe 16 very unsafe 1 don't know 21. Turning to another issue, how much of a problem is the quality of education in kindergarten through twelfth grade public schools in California today? Is it a ... 46% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 14 not much of a problem 7 don't know - 26 - 25. How do you rate the job performance of President Bill Clinton at this time? 21% excellent 37 good 25 fair 16 poor 1 don't know 26. How do you rate the job performance of the legislative branch of the federal government at this time, including the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives? 3% excellent 30 good 49 fair 15 poor 3 don't know 27. How do you rate the job performance of California Governor Pete Wilson at this time? 6% excellent 28 good 34 fair 29 poor 3 don't know 28. And how do you rate the job performance of the California Legislature at this time, including the State Senate and Assembly? 2% excellent 28 good 52 fair 13 poor 5 don't know 29. What level of government do you trust the most to spend your tax money wisely? (rotate) 10% federal government 17 state government 22 county government 31 city government 15 none of the above 0 other answer 5 don't know Now, I'm going to read you some pairs of statements. As I read each pair, please tell me whether the first statement or the second statement comes closer to your own views – even if neither is exactly right. The first pair is ... (read and rotate) 30. (a) Government regulation of business is necessary to protect the public interest. (b) Government regulation of business usually does more harm than good. 54% government regulation necessary 43 government regulation more harm 3 neither, don't know 31. (a) Stricter environmental laws and regulations cost too many jobs and hurt the economy. (b) Stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost. 37% stricter environmental laws cost jobs 58 stricter environmental laws worth cost 5 neither, don't know 32. (a) Homosexuality is a way of life that should be accepted by society. (b) Homosexuality is a way of life that should be discouraged by society. 55% homosexuality should be accepted 40 homosexuality should be discouraged 5 neither, don't know 33. If the government had a choice between reducing taxes or spending more on social programs like health care, social security, and unemployment benefits, which do you think it should do? (rotate) (a) reduce taxes, even if this means spending less on social programs. (b) spend more on social programs, even if this means higher taxes. 44% Reduce taxes, spend less 51 Spend more, raise taxes 5 don't know 34. And which of the following best represents your views about abortion – The choice on abortion should be left up to the woman and her doctor; abortion should be legal only in cases where pregnancy results from rape or incest or when the life of the mother is at risk; or abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. 61% up to woman and doctor 26 legal in some cases 12 illegal in all circumstances 1 don't know 35. On another topic, are you currently registered to vote as a Democrat, a Republican, another party or independent, or are you not registered to vote? 37% Democrat 29 Republican 14 other party, independent 20 not registered 36. Would you consider yourself to be politically: 8% very liberal 21 somewhat liberal 34 middle-of-the-road 25 somewhat conservative - 27 - 10 very conservative 2 don't know 37. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics? 15% a great deal 47 fair amount 31 only a little 7 none 0 don't know 43. 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?)? 14% yes, very concerned 12 yes, somewhat concerned 73 no 1 already lost job 38. Would you say you follow what’s going on in government and public affairs … 34% most of the time 39 some of the time 19 only now and then 6 hardly at all 2 never 0 don't know 39. Where do you get most of your information about what's going on in politics today? From … (rotate) 33% newspapers 41 television 10 radio 3 magazines 8 talking to people 3 the Internet or on-line services 1 other 1 don't know 40. How often would you say you vote? 47% always 24 nearly always 10 part of the time 6 seldom 13 never 0 other 0 don't know 41. On another topic, as far as your own situation, would you say you (and your family) are financially better off or worse off or just about the same as you were a year ago? 36% better off 13 worse off 51 same 42. How would you describe your current standard of living? Would you say it is ... 14% more than comfortable 73 comfortable 13 not comfortable 44. Next, a few questions about your region. How much of a problem is transportation and traffic congestion in your region? Is it a ... 33% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 31 not a problem 1 don't know 45. How much of a problem is population growth and development in your region? 27% big problem 38 somewhat of a problem 34 not a problem 1 don't know 46. And how much of a problem is air pollution, water pollution, and other forms of environmental pollution in your region? 27% big problem 46 somewhat of a problem 26 not a problem 1 don't know - 28 - How satisfied are you with each of the following ... (rotate) 47. The house or apartment in which you live? 53% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 9 not satisfied 48. Your job? [excludes those not working] 52% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 10 not satisfied 49. Your leisure activities? 47% very satisfied 41 somewhat satisfied 12 not satisfied 50. Taken all together, how would you say things are these days? Would you say you are ... 28% very happy 59 pretty happy 13 not too happy [51-60. Demographic Questions.] - 29 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee William Hauck, President, California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, Senior Associate, Claremont Graduate University Monica Lozano, Associate Publisher and Executive Editor, La Opinión Jerry Lubenow, Director of Publications, Institute of Governmental Studies, University of California, Berkeley Donna Lucas, President, Nelson Communications Max Neiman, Director, Center for Social and Behavioral Research, University of California, Riverside Carol J. Ramsey, Program Director, The James Irvine Foundation Jerry Roberts, Managing Editor, San Francisco Chronicle Dan Rosenheim, News Director, KRON-TV Cathy Taylor, Editorial Page Editor, Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson, Vice Chairman of the Board, The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside, President, Great Valley Center - 28 -" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:34:57" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(8) "s_598mbs" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:34:57" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:34:57" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["guid"]=> string(50) "http://148.62.4.17/wp-content/uploads/S_598MBS.pdf" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_mime_type"]=> string(15) "application/pdf" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["attachment_authors"]=> bool(false) }