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The PPIC Statewide Survey provides a voice for the public and likely voters— informing policymakers, encouraging discussion, and raising awareness on critical issues of the day. © 2017 Public Policy Institute of California The Public Policy Institute of California is dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC is a public charity. It does not take or support positions on any ballot measures or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. Short sections of text, not to exceed three paragraphs, may be quoted without written permission provided that full attribution is given to the source. Research publications reflect the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of our funders or of the staff, officers, advisory councils, or board of directors of the Public Policy Institute of California. PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY News Release MAY 2017 CONTACT Linda Strean 415-291-4412 Serina Correa 415-291-4417 EMBARGOED: Do not publish or broadcast until 9:00 p.m. PDT on Wednesday, May 31, 2017. Para ver este comunicado de prensa en español, por favor visite nuestra página de internet: www.ppic.org/main/pressreleaseindex.asp PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT Health Care: Most Oppose House Bill, Favor Single-Payer Plan—Unless It Raises Taxes HALF SAY INCREASED US IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT WILL HURT REGIONAL ECONOMIES SAN FRANCISCO, May 31, 2017—Most Californians have an unfavorable opinion of the bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that was passed by the US House of Representatives. A majority favor a single-payer state health insurance program, although support drops to less than half if the plan would require raising taxes. These are among the key findings of a statewide survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) with funding from the James Irvine Foundation. A majority of all adults (57%) and likely voters (64%) say they have a generally unfavorable opinion of the House bill passed earlier this month. In the survey—taken before the Congressional Budget Office released its assessment—most Democrats (75%) and independents (63%) view the bill unfavorably. Republicans are more likely to view it favorably (48%) than unfavorably (33%). When asked about the Affordable Care Act, Californians are divided, with 48 percent of all adults and 49 percent of likely voters having a favorable view of the law. Opinions were similar in January of this year and in December 2015. Partisan differences on this question persist as well: 65 percent of Democrats view the ACA favorably and 72 percent of Republicans view it unfavorably. Independents are split (45% favorable, 45% unfavorable). As the state legislature considers Senate Bill 562, which would establish a single-payer state health insurance program, 65 percent of all adults and 56 percent of likely voters say they favor such a plan. But support falls to 42 percent of adults and 43 percent of likely voters if the plan would raise taxes. Overall, strong majorities of Democrats (75%) and independents (64%) favor a single-payer plan, while a strong majority of Republicans (66%) are opposed. Mark Baldassare, PPIC president and CEO, summed up: “Californians are open to the idea of single-payer health insurance at a time when they are divided about the Affordable Care Act and oppose the House Republicans’ bill to repeal and replace it.” Pessimism about Direction of the Nation Four months after the new president and Congress took office, two-thirds of Californians (65%) believe the United States is going in the wrong direction, and half (50%) expect that the nation will have bad times financially in the next year. About two-thirds (67%) disapprove of the way President Trump is handling his job (27% approve). Strong majorities of Democrats (88%) and independents (70%) disapprove of the president’s job performance, while PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 3 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 a strong majority of Republicans (74%) approve. Only 26 percent of adults approve of the way Congress is handling its job—a 10-point drop from March. Notably, approval of Congress among Republicans (32% approve) has declined by 16 points since March. “Californians have become more pessimistic about the nation’s direction and the US economy since the beginning of the year,” Baldassare said. “Less than a third of state residents approve of the president and Congress today.” Half Worry That Someone They Know Could Be Deported Asked about the effect of increased federal immigration enforcement, about half of Californians (49%) say it will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in their part of California. Fewer say it will have a positive impact (24%) or not much of an impact (21%). A strong majority of Democrats (66%) and half of independents (50%) say increased enforcement will hurt the economy in their part of the state, while 48 percent of Republicans say it will have a positive impact. The survey also asked a more personal question about immigration: how much do you worry that someone you know could be deported? Half of adults say they worry a lot (30%) or some (21%). Fewer say they don’t worry much (15%) or at all (32%). Most Latinos (59%) say they worry a lot that someone they know could be deported, as do half of residents born outside the United States (50%). Californians under age 55 are much more likely than older adults to say that they worry a lot (36% to 19%). “In the context of increased federal immigration enforcement, many Californians think this will have negative impacts on their local economy and fear that someone they know will be deported,” Baldassare said. The legislature is considering a “sanctuary state” law that would limit cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration officials. When asked their opinions of the proposal, 48 percent of adults are in favor and 42 percent are opposed. Our January survey asked more generally if Californians favored the state and local government making policies—separate from the federal government—to protect the legal rights of undocumented immigrants in California. The response then: 65 percent of adults and 58 percent of likely voters were in favor. Most Believe Russia Tried to Influence Election Amid investigations into Russia’s activities during the presidential campaign, 58 percent of Californians say they think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the election. Nearly half of Californians (47%) say members of the Trump campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. How confident are Californians that the congressional investigation of Russia’s role will be conducted fairly? Only 38 percent say they are confident and 54 percent say they are not. Again, partisan differences are stark: 56 percent of Republicans are confident the investigation will be fair, while 61 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of independents are not. Skeptical of Trump’s Approach on North Korea, Syria As North Korea continues tests to advance its missile technology, only 28 percent of Californians have confidence in the president’s ability to handle the situation with that nation’s nuclear program, and 68 percent are uneasy about his approach. Just 21 percent of Californians think Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, while 70 percent think he does not. Most Oppose Federal Enforcement of Marijuana Laws in State The Trump administration has indicated it may increase enforcement of federal laws prohibiting the use of marijuana in states that have legalized its use. Solid majorities of Californians (60% adults, 66% likely voters) oppose enforcement of these federal laws. Strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 4 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 as well as a slight majority of Republicans (51%) say the federal government should not enforce these laws. As local governments consider regulations to implement marijuana legalization, about half of adults (48%) and likely voters (53%) favor retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Residents of Orange/San Diego (43%) are the least likely to favor retail sales, compared with about half of residents in other regions. Jobs, Economy Seen as Top State Issue Californians are most likely to name jobs and the economy as the top issue facing people in California today (22%), as they did last May. However, this issue is less frequently mentioned than it was a year ago (30% May 2016). The second most frequently named issue today is immigration (11%). When asked to assess their own financial situation, 40 percent of adults say they are in excellent or good shape. On the issue of poverty, 39 percent of adults say it is a big problem in their part of the state (40% somewhat of a problem). A solid majority of adults (61%) say the gap between the rich and the poor is getting larger in their part of California, while a third (33%) say it has stayed the same and 2 percent say it is getting smaller. Should state government do more to reduce the gap between rich and poor? A solid majority (61%) say yes. A third (32%) say the state should not do more. Regional Housing Affordability Viewed as Big Problem Most adults (59%) say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of the state. Opinions range widely across California. Fewer than half say it is a big problem in the Central Valley (35%) and Inland Empire (46%), compared to majorities in Orange/San Diego (59%), Los Angeles (63%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (79%). As the legislature considers several bills focusing on affordability, 47 percent of adults say the cost of their housing is placing a financial strain on them—a lot of strain, according to 27 percent. Majorities of renters (61%), those who are younger than age 55 (54%), those with annual household incomes below $40,000 (59%), those with children in the household (57%), or those with no college education (55%) say that housing costs are a financial strain. Latinos (55%), African Americans (54%), and Asian Americans (48%) are somewhat more likely than whites (39%) to say that housing costs are a strain. The survey asks about two housing policies under consideration.  State bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects: 70 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters would vote yes, including solid majorities across the state’s regions. But partisans differ, with 81 percent of Democrats and 61 percent of independents in favor, compared to only 34 percent of Republicans.  Changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting: 61 percent of adults and just under half of likely voters (47%) are in favor of doing this to make housing more affordable in their part of the state. Across parties, Republicans (59%) are somewhat more likely than Democrats (51%) to be in favor. “Many Californians feel financial strain over their housing costs and even more perceive housing affordability to be a big problem in their region,” Baldassare said. “Many favor state government actions to address this crisis.” Majorities Favor Governor’s Revised Budget When Californians are read a brief description of Governor Brown’s revised state budget for the next fiscal year, 63 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters say they are in favor of the plan, which includes increased spending for K–12 education and the state’s rainy day fund. In January, opinion was less favorable toward his budget, which included slowing education spending (47% adults, 43% likely voters in favor). The governor’s job approval rating is 52 percent among all adults and 50 percent among likely voters, similar to his rating in April. The legislature’s job approval rating is also similar to what it was in April: 46 percent among all adults and 41 percent among likely voters. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 5 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Federal Issues Key Findings  Two in three Californians believe the United States is going in the wrong direction and half say they expect bad times financially. Twenty-seven percent of adults approve of President Trump and a similar share approve of Congress. (page 7)  Most Californians (58%) think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the presidential election—and nearly half of adults think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. Just over half are not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the election will be conducted fairly. (page 8)  About half of Californians view the Affordable Care Act favorably, with partisans sharply divided. One in four Californians have a favorable view of the health care bill recently passed by the House. Two in three Californians support single-payer health insurance. (page 9)  Half of Californians think increased federal immigration enforcement will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy. Half worry a lot (30%) or some (21%) about someone they know being deported. (page 10)  Two in three Californians are uneasy about Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program. A similar proportion think that Donald Trump does not have a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria. (page 11)  Most Californians would rather have a bigger government providing more services (54%) than a smaller government providing fewer services (39%). Sixty percent of Californians think gun laws should be stricter. (page 12) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Percent all adults Percent all adults MAY 2017 Do you think things in the United States are going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 100 80 60 50 43 40 Right direction Wrong direction 65 57 36 29 20 0 Oct-16 Jan-17 May-17 Do you think that during the next 12 months the US will have good times financially or bad times? 100 Good times Bad times 80 60 46 39 40 52 39 50 39 20 0 Oct-16 Jan-17 May-17 Support for guaranteed health insurance coverage through a single state government health plan Favor, even if it means raising taxes Favor, not if it means raising taxes Oppose Don't know 6 29 42 23 Californians and Their Government 6 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Approval of Federal Elected Officials Optimism about the country is low: only 29 percent of adults say things in the United States are going in the right direction (65% wrong direction), while 39 percent expect good economic times in the next 12 months (50% bad times). After four months in office, President Trump receives low approval ratings among Californians (27%) and likely voters (33%). Approval of the president was similarly low in January (30% adults, 34% likely voters) and March (31% adults, 35% likely voters). Today, a strong majority of Republicans (74%) approve, while strong majorities of Democrats (88%) and independents (70%) disapprove. Fewer than four in ten Californians across age, income, and education groups approve of the president. In a recent Gallup weekly tracking poll, adults nationwide (38%) are more likely to approve of President Trump. “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Donald Trump is handling his job as president?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 27% 67% 6% Likely voters 33 63 3 Democrats 10 88 2 Party Republicans 74 23 4 Independents 24 70 6 Central Valley 36 58 6 Inland Empire 35 55 11 Region Los Angeles 18 76 6 Orange/San Diego 31 64 5 San Francisco Bay Area 23 73 4 Only 26 percent of Californians approve of the way the US Congress is handling its job a 10 point decrease from March. Among likely voters, 19 percent approve of Congress  an 8 point decrease since March. Solid majorities across parties disapprove. Notably, among California Republicans, approval of Congress has declined by 16 points since March. A third of adults or fewer across all regions and demographic groups approve of the way Congress is handling its job. A recent Gallup poll found similar approval levels of Congress among adults nationwide (20% approve, 74% disapprove). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the US Congress is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 26% 66% 8% Likely voters 19 76 5 Democrats 15 82 3 Party Republicans 32 62 6 Independents 19 73 7 Central Valley 30 64 7 Inland Empire 28 57 15 Region Los Angeles 25 67 8 Orange/San Diego 29 65 7 San Francisco Bay Area 22 71 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 7 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 US Election and Russia Amid an ongoing investigation into the activities of the Russian government during the 2016 campaign and in the wake of President Trump firing FBI director James Comey, do Californians think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the presidential election? Fifty-eight percent of Californians think there was Russian interference—including 47 percent of Californians who think members of the Trump campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. According to an April Washington Post/ABC News poll, a similar share of adults nationwide think the Russian government tried to influence the election (56%), although somewhat fewer believe the Trump campaign was involved (39%). Partisans view this issue very differently: 79 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of independents think the Russians did try to influence the election, compared with only 28 percent of Republicans. Residents in Los Angeles (65%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (63%) are most likely to think there was Russian interference (57% Orange/San Diego, 53% Central Valley, 49% Inland Empire). Half or more across demographic groups hold this view. Among those who approve of President Trump, 64 percent say the Russian government did not interfere, while 66 percent of those who disapprove of his performance say members of his campaign helped Russian efforts. “Given what you’ve heard or read, do you think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of last fall’s US presidential election, or not? (If yes: Do you think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts to influence the election, or not?)” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Likely voters Yes 58% 79% 28% 59% 61% Yes, and Trump campaign intentionally helped 47 70 12 42 Yes, and Trump campaign did not intentionally help 7 5 13 11 Yes, don’t know if Trump campaign intentionally helped 4 4 3 6 No 29 13 59 33 47 9 5 32 Don’t know 13 8 13 9 7 How confident are Californians that the Congressional investigation of Russia’s role will be conducted fairly? Fewer than four in ten Californians (38%) are confident that Congress’s investigation will be fair, while 54 percent are not confident. Fifty percent of adults nationwide in the Washington Post/ABC News poll were not confident. Majorities of California Democrats and independents are not confident, while most Republicans are. Residents in Orange/San Diego (58%), Los Angeles (57%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (56%) are more likely to lack confidence compared to those in the Inland Empire (43%) and the Central Valley (41%). At least half across demographic groups are not confident. “Are you confident or not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the 2016 election will be conducted fairly?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Confident 38% 35% 56% 34% 41% Not confident 54 61 37 62 55 Don’t know 84 7 44 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 8 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Health Care Policy As the US Senate considers a bill that would replace the Affordable Care Act, 48 percent of Californians have a generally favorable opinion of the 2010 health reform law, while 41 percent have a generally unfavorable opinion. Opinions about the law were similar in January of this year (51% favorable, 39% unfavorable) and in December 2015 (51% favorable, 42% unfavorable). Californians’ views on the health reform law are similar to those of adults nationwide (48% favorable, 41% unfavorable), according to an April Kaiser Family Foundation survey. Notably, there are stark partisan differences on this issue: while two in three Democrats (65%) have a favorable opinion of the 2010 health reform law, nearly three in four Republicans (72%) view it unfavorably. Independents are divided (45% favorable, 45% unfavorable). Californians with health insurance (50%) are more likely than those without health insurance (37%) to have a favorable opinion of the law. “As you may know, a health reform bill was signed into law in 2010. Given what you know about the health reform law, do you have a generally favorable or generally unfavorable opinion of it?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favorable 48% 65% 19% 45% 49% Unfavorable 41 27 72 45 46 Don’t know 10 8 9 10 5 On May 4, by a vote of 217 to 213, the US House of Representatives passed a bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. When asked about the House bill, a majority of California adults (57%) and likely voters (64%) have a generally unfavorable opinion. Strong majorities of Democrats (75%) and independents (63%) have an unfavorable opinion of the bill while Republicans are more likely to view it favorably (48%) than unfavorably (33%). Across regions, fewer than four in ten Californians have a favorable view of the House bill. Moreover, fewer than three in ten Californians across age, income, and racial/ethnic groups have a favorable opinion of the House health care bill. “As you may know, the US House of Representatives recently passed a bill to replace the 2010 health reform law. Given what you know about the House bill, do you have a generally favorable or generally unfavorable opinion of it?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favorable 25% 12% 48% 20% 24% Unfavorable 57 75 33 63 64 Don’t know 19 13 18 17 11 The state legislature is currently considering Senate Bill 562, which would establish a single-payer state health insurance program to cover all Californians. How do Californians feel about this idea? Sixty-five percent of adults and 56 percent of likely voters favor a single-payer state plan. But if this plan would require raising taxes, support declines (42% adults still favor, 43% likely voters still favor). Overall across parties, a strong majority of Democrats (75%) and independents (64%) favor a single-payer state system while a strong majority of Republicans (66%) are opposed. Notably, 59 percent of Democrats would favor a single-payer program even if it means higher taxes, though support among independents falls to 44 percent. Though majorities across all demographic groups favor a single-payer system, if raising taxes is required, support falls below 50 percent for all groups with the exception of college graduates. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 9 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Immigration Policy Nearly half of adults and likely voters (49% each) think that increased immigration enforcement will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in their part of California. Fewer say that it will have a positive impact (24% adults, 27% likely voters) or not much of an impact (21% adults, 20% likely voters). While a strong majority of Democrats (66%) and half of independents (50%) say increased enforcement will have a negative impact on their local economy, a plurality of Republicans (48%) say it will have a positive impact. About half across regions, with the exception of the Inland Empire (36%), say it will have a negative impact. Latinos (56%) and African Americans (54%) are somewhat more likely than whites (45%) and Asian Americans (43%) to say increased immigration enforcement will have a negative economic impact in their part of California. College graduates are more likely than those without a college degree (58% to 45%), and Californians under age 55 are more likely than those 55 and older (52% to 42%) to say that it will have a negative impact. “When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, do you think it will have a positive impact, a negative impact, or not much of an impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in your part of California?” Positive impact All adults 24% Central Valley 27% Inland Empire 30% Region Los Angeles 20% Orange/ San Diego 23% San Francisco Bay Area 23% Likely voters 27% Negative impact 49 48 36 53 52 51 49 Not much of an impact 21 18 26 20 21 21 20 Don’t know 67 8 7 4 55 Half of Californians say they worry a lot (30%) or some (21%) that someone they know could be deported. Notably, 59 percent of Latinos and 50 percent of residents not born in the United States say they worry a lot. Californians under age 55 are much more likely than older adults to say that they worry a lot (36% to 19%). Across regions, between 27 and 34 percent say they worry a lot that someone they know could be deported. “When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, how much do you worry that someone that you know could be deported? Would you say that you worry a lot, some, not much, or not at all?” A lot Some Not much Not at all Don’t know All adults 30% 21 15 32 1 African Americans 33% 21 15 30 1 Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 13% 59% 29 19 16 7 37 15 5– Whites 14% 21 21 43 1 Born in United States Yes No 20% 50% 22 20 18 8 39 19 12 Likely voters 19% 21 20 38 2 In our January survey, 65 percent of adults and 58 percent of likely voters favored the state and local government making their own policies and taking action, separate from the federal government, to protect the legal rights of undocumented immigrants in California (80% Democrats, 59% independents, 27% Republicans in favor). Today, when asked specifically about a proposed “sanctuary state” law that would limit assistance and cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration enforcement, 48 percent of adults and 43 percent of likely voters are in favor. Partisans are divided (56% Democrats, 41% independents, 19% Republicans in favor). PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 10 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 International Affairs In Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office, two international affairs stand out: the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program and the situation in Syria. In both cases, Californians offer pessimistic assessments. North Korea has continued tests to advance its missile technology with the stated goal of eventually being able to deliver a nuclear warhead to the continental United States. Only 28 percent of Californians have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program; 68 percent are uneasy about his approach. Adults nationwide were more confident (39% confident, 56% uneasy) in an April CBS News poll. Most Republicans (71%) are confident about his ability to handle the situation, while most independents (67%) and Democrats (87%) are uneasy. Though majorities across regions and demographic groups are uneasy about his approach, differences do emerge. Across regions, more than seven in ten residents in Los Angeles (77%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (73%) are uneasy, with about six in ten in the other regions of the state holding this view. African Americans (89%) and Latinos (85%) are far more likely than Asian Americans and whites (56% each) to be uneasy about his approach. “In general, do you have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program, or are you uneasy about his approach?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Have confidence 28% 12% 71% 30% Uneasy about his approach 68 87 25 67 Don’t know 41 4 3 Likely voters 33% 64 2 In the wake of chemical weapons being used against Syrian civilians, including women and children, President Trump ordered a military strike against the Syrian regime. Seven in ten Californians think Donald Trump does not have a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, while one in five say that he does. Adults nationwide were more likely to say he has a clear plan (32% has a clear plan, 61% does not) in an April Pew Research Center poll. Nearly all Democrats (90%) and seven in ten independents think Donald Trump does not have a clear plan, while 56 percent of Republicans say that he does. Majorities of Californians across regions and more than six in ten across demographic groups say he does not have a clear plan. However, there are large regional differences, with residents in Los Angeles (80%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (77%) more likely than those in Orange/San Diego (64%), the Central Valley (61%), and the Inland Empire (54%) to say he does not have a clear plan. Differences also emerge across racial/ethnic groups, with African Americans (89%) the most likely to say he does not have a plan, followed by Asian Americans (77%), Latinos (75%), and whites (62%). “Do you think that Donald Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, or don’t you think so?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Has a clear plan 21% 7% 56% 21% Doesn’t have a clear plan 70 90 34 71 Don’t know 9 3 10 8 Likely voters 25% 69 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 11 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Role of Government More than half of Californians (54%) prefer a bigger government providing more services rather than a smaller government providing fewer services (39%). Californians held similar views last March (57% bigger government, 39% smaller government). Today, likely voters are evenly divided (46% bigger, 47% smaller). Adults nationwide were divided on this question (48% bigger, 45% smaller) in the April Pew Research Center survey. Unsurprisingly, partisans are deeply split on the optimal size of government: 67 percent of Democrats prefer a bigger government and 79 percent of Republicans prefer a smaller government. Residents in the San Francisco Bay Area (61%) and Los Angeles (59%) are the most likely to prefer a bigger government, followed by those in the Central Valley (50%), Orange/San Diego (49%), and the Inland Empire (44%). Majorities of Latinos (73%), Asian Americans (62%), and African Americans (55%) prefer a bigger government, while 54 percent of whites prefer a smaller government. The preference for a bigger government declines as age and income increase and is more common among those with a high school degree or less, compared with more-educated Californians. “If you had to choose, would you rather have a smaller government providing fewer services, or a bigger government providing more services?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Smaller government 39% 24% 79% 51% Bigger government 54 67 16 43 Don’t know 78 5 7 Likely voters 47% 46 7 In 2016, state legislation and a voter-approved ballot initiative both created new gun regulations in California. When asked if, in general, gun laws should be made more or less strict, most Californians (60%) think laws covering the sale of guns should be stricter; 15 percent say they should be less strict and 23 percent say they should be kept as they are now. Findings were similar in September 2015 (65% more strict, 10% less strict, 23% kept as they are now). According to the April CBS News poll, 54 percent of adults nationwide say laws should be more strict (11% less strict, 33% kept as they are now). Most Democrats (72%) and half of independents (51%) say gun laws should be stricter, while a plurality of Republicans (38%) say they should be kept as they are now (28% more strict, 32% less strict). Residents in Los Angeles (70%), the San Francisco Bay Area (69%), and Orange/San Diego (61%) are more likely than those in the Central Valley (47%) and the Inland Empire (43%) to think laws should be stricter. Women (70%) are far more likely than men (49%) to hold this view. Latinos (73%), Asian Americans (72%), and African Americans (67%) tend to think gun laws should be stricter while only 46 percent of whites hold this view. “In general, do you think laws covering the sale of guns should be made more strict, less strict, or kept as they are now?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind More strict 60% 72% 28% 51% Less strict 15 7 32 18 Kept as they are now 23 20 38 30 Don’t know 21 2 1 Likely voters 55% 19 25 1 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 12 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY State Issues Key Findings  Fifty-two percent of adults and 50 percent of likely voters approve of Governor Brown. Forty-six percent of adults and 41 percent of likely voters approve of the California Legislature. (page 14)  Forty-three percent of adults and half of likely voters think the state budget situation is a big problem today, with partisans divided. About six in ten favor Governor Brown’s revised budget plan. (page 15)  Twenty-two percent name jobs and the economy as the most important issue facing the state. Forty percent rate their personal financial situation as excellent or good, and 47 percent say the cost of housing is a financial strain, with wide differences by income. (page 16)  Six in ten say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of California, with wide differences across regions. Majorities of adults and likely voters would vote yes on a state bond for affordable housing. Adults and likely voters are more likely to favor than to oppose changing permitting and regulation to make housing more affordable. (page 17)  Four in ten adults and likely voters say poverty is a big problem in their part of California, and solid majorities say the gap between rich and poor is getting larger. Majorities say the state should do more to reduce this gap. (page 18)  Fifty-six percent of adults say that in general marijuana use should be legal, and about half favor retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Solid majorities of adults and likely voters say the federal government should not enforce federal marijuana laws in states that have allowed its use. (page 19) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Percent MAY 2017 Approval ratings of state elected officials 100 Governor Brown California Legislature 80 Percent all adults 60 52 46 40 20 0 May-12 May-13 May-14 May-15 May-16 May-17 Percent all adults Perception that the state budget situation is a big problem 100 80 60 40 20 0 43 Perception that housing affordability is a big problem in your part of California 100 79 80 63 59 60 46 40 35 20 0 Central Valley Inland Empire Los Orange/San SF Bay Angeles Diego Area Californians and Their Government 13 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Approval of State Elected Officials In the wake of the May budget revision, 52 percent of adults and 50 percent of likely voters approve of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California. Brown’s approval rating was similar in April (49% adults, 52% likely voters) and last May (52% adults, 50% likely voters). Democrats (71%) are much more likely than independents (46%) and Republicans (24%) to approve. Approval is highest in the San Francisco Bay Area (62%) and Los Angeles (56%); in other regions it is below 50 percent. Latinos (60%), African Americans (57%), and Asian Americans (56%) give higher approval ratings than whites (46%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 52% 32% 16% Likely voters 50 40 9 Democrats 71 17 12 Party Republicans 24 72 3 Independents 46 40 13 Central Valley 46 35 19 Inland Empire 47 36 17 Region Los Angeles 56 29 15 Orange/San Diego 45 38 16 San Francisco Bay Area 62 23 15 As the June budget deadline approaches, 46 percent of adults and 41 percent of likely voters approve of the way the California Legislature is handling its job. Approval was similar in April (49% adults, 44% likely voters) and last May (43% adults, 38% likely voters). Today, a solid majority of Democrats (64%) approve, while fewer independents (37%) and Republicans (14%) do so. Approval is highest in the San Francisco Bay Area (52%) and Los Angeles (50%); in other regions it is below 50 percent. Latinos (56%) and Asian Americans (55%) are somewhat more approving than African Americans (44%) and whites (38%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California Legislature is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 46% 38% 15% Likely voters 41 46 12 Democrats 64 23 13 Party Republicans 14 76 10 Independents 37 51 11 Central Valley 40 46 14 Inland Empire 40 47 12 Region Los Angeles 50 35 15 Orange/San Diego 45 42 13 San Francisco Bay Area 52 32 17 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 14 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Governor’s Budget Proposal As the legislature considers the governor’s state budget plan for the next fiscal year, fewer than one in ten Californians (6% adults, 8% likely voters) name the state budget as the top problem facing the people of California today. Reflecting a steep decline in the public’s level of concern five to seven years ago, 43 percent of California adults and 49 percent of likely voters say the state budget situation is a big problem today. The responses were lower among likely voters in January (37% adults, 38% likely voters) and similar last May (44% adults, 51% likely voters). Today, Republicans (72%) are much more likely than independents (51%) and Democrats (33%) to call the state budget situation a big problem. Fewer than half across age, education, and income groups say the state budget situation is a big problem. “Do you think the state budget situation in California—that is, the balance between government spending and revenues—is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Big problem 43% 33% 72% 51% 49% Somewhat of a problem 37 42 17 35 32 Not a problem 13 18 8 9 14 Don’t know 77 3 55 Governor Brown recently released his May revision of the $124 billion state General Fund budget plan for the next fiscal year. After hearing a description of the plan, which includes increased spending for K–12 education and the state’s rainy day fund, 63 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters are in favor. In January, opinion was much less favorable toward the governor’s budget plan (47% adults, 43% likely voters), which included slowing education spending. Last May, support was similar for the governor’s revised budget proposal, which also included increased education spending (65% adults, 60% likely voters). Today, Democrats (81%) are far more likely than independents (59%) and Republicans (28%) to favor the current plan. Majorities are in favor across the state’s regions and age, education, income, and racial/ethnic groups. “Governor Brown recently released a revised budget plan of about $124 billion in the General Fund for the next fiscal year, which will increase overall spending by about 1 percent, including $2.8 billion increased spending on K–12 education, about $1.8 billion for the state’s rainy day fund, and no new taxes. In general, do you favor or oppose the governor’s budget plan?” All adults Favor 63% Oppose 26% Don’t know/ have not heard anything about the budget 11% Likely voters 57 33 10 Democrats 81 13 6 Party Republicans 28 60 12 Independents 59 30 10 Central Valley 56 31 13 Inland Empire 60 30 10 Region Los Angeles 69 20 11 Orange/San Diego 61 31 8 San Francisco Bay Area 67 23 10 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 15 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 The Economy and Personal Finances Californians are most likely to name jobs and the economy as the top issue facing people in California today (22% adults, 19% likely voters). Last May, this was also the top issue, but at a higher rate (30% adults, 32% likely voters). Compared to a year ago, Californians mention water and the drought less often (16% to 6%) and more often name immigration (6% to 11%); government in general, elected officials, and President Trump (3% to 8%); and health care (2% to 6%). In light of current economic trends, how are Californians evaluating their own personal financial situation today? Forty percent of adults and 51 percent of likely voters say they are in excellent or good shape financially. In our December 2013 survey, similar proportions of adults (39%) and likely voters (51%) rated their personal finances as excellent or good, but fewer gave positive ratings in our December 2011 survey (33% adults, 40% likely voters). However, today there are large differences in the excellent or good ratings of personal finances across income groups (19% under $40,000; 41% $40,000 to $80,000; 72% $80,000 or more) and between renters (29%) and homeowners (57%). Excellent and good ratings of personal finances are higher among whites (50%) and Asian Americans (43%) than among Latinos (29%) and African Americans (28%). The excellent and good ratings of personal finances are higher in Orange/San Diego (48%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (45%) than in other regions (36% Inland Empire, 35% Central Valley, 35% Los Angeles). “How would you rate your own personal financial situation? Would you say you are in excellent shape, good shape, only fair shape, or poor shape financially?” Excellent shape All adults 7% Under $40,000 2% Household income $40,000 to $80,000 5% $80,000 or more 17% Likely voters 11% Good shape 33 17 36 55 40 Fair shape 40 48 43 25 35 Poor shape 19 32 15 4 13 Don’t know –– – – 1 As the legislature considers a plethora of bills to address the rising cost of housing in California, 47 percent of adults and 38 percent of likely voters say that their housing costs place a financial strain on them today. Twenty-seven percent of adults and 20 percent of likely voters say these costs place a lot of financial strain on them. The perception of “a lot” of strain is similar across regions (30% Central Valley, 30% Los Angeles, 27% Orange/San Diego, 26% San Francisco Bay Area, 25% Inland Empire) but it varies across partisan groups (29% independents, 25% Democrats, 14% Republicans). The cost of housing has more financial impact on certain groups. Majorities of renters (61%), those who are younger than age 55 (54%), those with annual household incomes below $40,000 (59%), those with children in the household (57%), or those with no college education (55%) say that housing costs are a financial strain. Latinos (55%), African Americans (54%), and Asian Americans (48%) are somewhat more likely than whites (39%) to say that housing costs are a strain. “Does the cost of your housing place a financial strain on you and your family today?” All adults Under $40,000 Household income $40,000 to $80,000 $80,000 or more Likely voters Yes 47% 59% 44% 35% 38% No 52 40 56 65 62 Don’t know 11 1 1 1 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 16 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Regional Housing Affordability Majorities of adults (59%) and likely voters (66%) say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of California (among adults, 28% say somewhat of a problem, 12% not a problem). Opinions range widely across the state: fewer than half say it is a big problem in the Central Valley (35%) and Inland Empire (46%), compared to majorities in Orange/San Diego (59%), Los Angeles (63%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (79%). Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (74%) are the most likely to say housing affordability is a big problem where they live (65% whites, 55% Asian Americans, 50% Latinos). Majorities across parties agree (64% Democrats, 62% independents, 58% Republicans). We asked Californians about two housing policies under consideration in the state legislature. Seven in ten adults and 57 percent of likely voters say they would vote yes on a state bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects. This includes solid majorities across the state’s regions (74% Inland Empire, 73% Los Angeles, 72% San Francisco Bay Area, 68% Central Valley, 64% Orange/San Diego). There are wide partisan differences on this question, with 81 percent of Democrats, 61 percent of independents, and 34 percent of Republicans saying they would vote yes. Across racial/ethnic groups, overwhelming majorities of African Americans (90%), Latinos (84%), and Asian Americans (82%) would vote yes, along with a smaller majority of whites (56%). “If the state ballot had a bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects, would you vote yes or no?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Yes 70% 81% 34% 61% 57% No 24 15 58 31 36 Don’t know 64 8 98 A solid majority of adults (61%) and a plurality of likely voters (47%) favor changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in their part of the state. Majorities across regions are in favor (68% Inland Empire, 63% Los Angeles, 60% Central Valley, 60% Orange/San Diego, 55% San Francisco Bay Area). Across parties, Republicans (59%) are somewhat more likely than Democrats (51%) to be in favor. Majorities of Latinos (80%), African Americans (72%), and Asian Americans (58%) are in favor, compared to fewer than half of whites (47%). “Do you favor or oppose changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in your part of California?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favor Oppose 61% 28 51% 37 59% 26 54% 32 47% 39 Don’t know 11 12 15 13 14 There are some similar patterns in support for both proposals to address housing affordability. Renters are far more likely than homeowners to support an affordable housing bond (82% to 54%) or to favor changing environmental regulations and permitting (70% to 50%). The likelihood of supporting either proposal decreases as income levels increase, and support is much more likely among those with no college education and among adults younger than age 55. Those who say their own housing costs are a financial strain are more likely than others to support a bond (79% to 63%) or to favor changing environmental regulations and permitting (66% to 56%). PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 17 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Poverty and Inequality About four in ten adults (39%) and likely voters (40%) say poverty is a big problem in their part of California (among adults, 40% say somewhat of a problem, 20% not much of a problem). Residents of Los Angeles (49%) and the Central Valley (45%) are more likely than those in the Inland Empire (35%), the San Francisco Bay Area (34%), and Orange/San Diego (27%) to say poverty is a big problem where they live. Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (58%) are the most likely to say poverty is a big problem in their area (41% Latinos, 39% whites, 25% Asian Americans). Renters (43%) are slightly more likely than homeowners (35%) to say the same. Across parties, Republicans are more likely than Democrats to say poverty is not much of a problem where they live (26% to 16%). Solid majorities of adults (61%) and likely voters (66%) think the gap between the rich and the poor is getting larger in their part of California. Majorities across racial/ethnic groups agree (72% African Americans, 64% whites, 57% Asian Americans, 56% Latinos), as do majorities across regions, including seven in ten San Francisco Bay Area residents (69%). Across parties, Democrats and independents (70% each) are more likely than Republicans (49%) to say the same. Homeowners and renters (61% each) are equally likely to say the gap between rich and poor is getting larger where they live, and similar shares hold this view across income and age groups. The likelihood of saying so is greater as education levels increase. “Do you think the gap between the rich and the poor in your part of California is getting larger, getting smaller, or has it stayed the same?” Getting larger Getting smaller Stayed the same Don’t know All adults 61% 2 33 4 Central Valley 58% 2 36 4 Inland Empire 53% 4 36 7 Region Los Angeles 64% 2 30 4 Orange/ San Diego 58% 2 35 4 San Francisco Bay Area 69% 2 25 4 Likely voters 66% 2 28 4 Six in ten adults (61%) and a majority of likely voters (52%) say the state government should do more to reduce the gap between rich and poor in California. A third of adults (32%) and 41 percent of likely voters say the state government should not do this. Three in four Democrats (74%) and 55 percent of independents say the state government should do more to reduce the gap, and a strong majority of Republicans (67%) say the state should not do so. Renters (69%) and those with household incomes below $40,000 (73%) are much more likely than homeowners (50%) and those with higher incomes (53%) to say the state should do more. Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (81%), Latinos (73%), and Asian Americans (62%) are more likely than whites (49%) to say the state should do more. Californians who think poverty is a big problem where they live are much more likely than those who think it is not much of a problem to say the state should do more (68% to 49%). “Should the state government do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor in California, or is this something the state government should not be doing?” Should do more All adults 61% African Americans 81% Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 62% 73% Whites 49% Should not be doing 32 13 28 19 45 Don’t know 7 6 10 8 6 Likely voters 52% 41 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 18 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Marijuana Legalization In 2016, California voters passed Proposition 64 to “In general, should the use of marijuana be legal?” legalize the recreational use of marijuana (57% yes). Today, 56 percent of adults and 63 percent of likely 80 Yes, legal No, not legal voters say that, in general, the use of marijuana should be legal. In our October survey, 53 percent of adults and 60 56 Percent all adults 57 percent of likely voters said the same. Currently, strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%) say use should be legal, while a 40 41 slight majority of Republicans (51%) say it should not be 20 legal. In an April CBS News poll, 61 percent of adults nationwide said marijuana use should be legal. The Trump administration has indicated that it may 0 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 increase enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states that have legalized its use. Solid majorities of California adults (60%) and likely voters (66%) say the federal government should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states. Opinion was similar when we asked another version of this question in September 2013 (61% adults and 68% likely voters said should not enforce). Today, strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%), and a slight majority of Republicans (51%), say the federal government should not enforce these laws. Whites and African Americans are more likely than Latinos to say so. Among those who say marijuana should be legal, 79 percent say the federal government should not enforce these laws, as do 37 percent of those who say marijuana use should not be legal. “As you may know, some states, including California, have decided to allow marijuana use, but it is still prohibited under federal law. Do you think the federal government should or should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states?” Should All adults 38% African Americans 30% Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 41% 50% Whites 29% Should not 60 68 56 49 69 Don’t know 22 41 2 Likely voters 32% 66 2 As local governments consider regulations to implement marijuana legalization, about half of adults (48%) and likely voters (53%) are in favor of retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Residents of Orange/San Diego (43%) are least likely to support this idea, while about half in other regions favor it. Young adults are more likely than older adults (age 35 and above), and whites (56%) and African Americans (55%) are somewhat more likely than Asian Americans (41%) and Latinos (40%) to be in favor. Democrats (61%) and independents (58%) are far more likely than Republicans (36%) to support this idea. “Regardless of your views on legalizing marijuana in California, do you favor or oppose retail sales of recreational marijuana in your city or community?” All adults 18 to 34 Age 35 to 54 55 and older Favor 48% 61% 43% 40% Oppose It depends (volunteered) 47 37 49 57 21 4 2 Don’t know 21 4 1 Likely voters 53% 43 3 2 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 19 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Regional Map MAY 2017 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 20 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Methodology MAY 2017 The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, president and CEO and survey director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance from survey research associate David Kordus, project manager for this survey, associate survey director Dean Bonner, and survey research associate Lunna Lopes. The Californians and Their Government series is supported with funding from the James Irvine Foundation, the California Endowment, and the PPIC Donor Circle. The PPIC Statewide Survey invites input, comments, and suggestions from policy and public opinion experts and from its own advisory committee, but survey methods, questions, and content are determined solely by PPIC’s survey team. Findings in this report are based on a survey of 1,707 California adult residents, including 1,107 interviewed on cell phones and 600 interviewed on landline telephones. Interviews took an average of 18 minutes to complete. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights from May 12–22, 2017. Cell phone interviews were conducted using a computer-generated random sample of cell phone numbers. All cell phone numbers with California area codes were eligible for selection. Once a cell phone user was reached, it was verified that this person was age 18 or older, a resident of California, and in a safe place to continue the survey (e.g., not driving). Cell phone respondents were offered a small reimbursement to help defray the cost of the call. Cell phone interviews were conducted with adults who have cell phone service only and with those who have both cell phone and landline service in the household. Landline interviews were conducted using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers that ensured that both listed and unlisted numbers were called. All landline telephone exchanges in California were eligible for selection. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (age 18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. For both cell phones and landlines, telephone numbers were called as many as eight times. When no contact with an individual was made, calls to a number were limited to six. Also, to increase our ability to interview Asian American adults, we made up to three additional calls to phone numbers estimated by Survey Sampling International as likely to be associated with Asian American individuals. Live landline and cell phone interviews were conducted by Abt Associates in English and Spanish, according to respondents’ preferences. Accent on Languages, Inc., translated new survey questions into Spanish, with assistance from Renatta DeFever. Abt Associates uses the US Census Bureau’s 2011–2015 American Community Survey’s (ACS) Public Use Microdata Series for California (with regional coding information from the University of Minnesota’s Integrated Public Use Microdata Series for California) to compare certain demographic characteristics of the survey sample—region, age, gender, race/ethnicity, and education—with the characteristics of California’s adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the ACS figures. To estimate landline and cell phone service in California, Abt Associates used 2015 state-level estimates released by the National Center for Health Statistics—which used data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) and the ACS—and 2016 estimates for the West Census Region in the latest NHIS report. The estimates for California were then compared against landline and cell phone service reported in this survey. We also used voter registration data from the California Secretary of State to compare the party registration of registered voters in our sample to party registration statewide. The landline and cell phone samples were then integrated using a frame integration weight, while sample balancing adjusted for differences across regional, age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, telephone service, and party registration groups. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 21 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 The sampling error, taking design effects from weighting into consideration, is ±3.2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level for the total unweighted sample of 1,707 adults. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 3.2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for unweighted subgroups is larger: for the 1,382 registered voters, the sampling error is ±3.6 percent; for the 1,019 likely voters, it is ±4.2 percent. Sampling error is only 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. We present results for five geographic regions, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba Counties. “San Francisco Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, “Inland Empire” refers to Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, and “Orange/San Diego” refers to Orange and San Diego Counties. Residents of other geographic areas are included in the results reported for all adults, registered voters, and likely voters, but sample sizes for these less populous areas are not large enough to report separately. We present specific results for non-Hispanic whites, who account for 43 percent of the state’s adult population, and also for Latinos, who account for about a third of the state’s adult population and constitute one of the fastest-growing voter groups. We also present results for non-Hispanic Asian Americans, who make up about 15 percent of the state’s adult population, and non-Hispanic African Americans, who comprise about 6 percent. Results for other racial/ethnic groups—such as Native Americans—are included in the results reported for all adults, registered voters, and likely voters, but sample sizes are not large enough for separate analysis. We compare the opinions of those who report they are registered Democrats, registered Republicans, and decline-to-state or independent voters; the results for those who say they are registered to vote in other parties are not large enough for separate analysis. We also analyze the responses of likely voters—so designated per their responses to survey questions about voter registration, previous election participation, and current interest in politics. The percentages presented in the report tables and in the questionnaire may not add to 100 due to rounding. We compare current PPIC Statewide Survey results to those in our earlier surveys and to those in national surveys by CBS News, Gallup, the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Pew Research Center, and the Washington Post/ABC News. Additional details about our methodology can be found at www.ppic.org/content/other/SurveyMethodology.pdf and are available upon request through surveys@ppic.org. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 22 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Questionnaire and Results MAY 2017 CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT May 12–22, 2017 1,707 California Adult Residents: English, Spanish MARGIN OF ERROR ±3.2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE PERCENTAGES MAY NOT ADD TO 100 DUE TO ROUNDING First, thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing people in California today? [code, don’t read] 22% 11 8 6 6 6 6 5 5 5 4 3 2 6 5 jobs, economy immigration, illegal immigration government in general, problems with elected officials, parties health care, health insurance housing costs, availability state budget, deficit, taxes water, drought crime, gangs, drugs education, schools, teachers environment, pollution, global warming infrastructure homelessness race relations, racial and ethnic issues other (specify) don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California? 52% 32 16 approve disapprove don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California Legislature is handling its job? 46% 38 15 approve disapprove don’t know Now thinking about your own personal finances… How would you rate your own personal financial situation? Would you say you are in excellent shape, good shape, only fair shape, or poor shape financially? 7% 33 40 19 – excellent good only fair poor don’t know Does the cost of your housing place a financial strain on you and your family today? (if yes, ask: “Is that a lot of financial strain or only a little?”) 47% 52 1 yes 27 yes, a lot 18 yes, a little 2 yes, don’t know how much no don’t know Next, Do you think the state budget situation in California—that is, the balance between government spending and revenues—is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today? 43% 37 13 7 big problem somewhat of a problem not a problem don’t know [question 7 not asked] PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 23 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Governor Brown recently released a revised budget plan of about $124 billion in the General Fund for the next fiscal year, which will increase overall spending by about 1 percent, including $2.8 billion increased spending on K–12 education, about $1.8 billion for the state’s rainy day fund, and no new taxes. In general, do you favor or oppose the governor’s budget plan? 63% 26 5 6 favor oppose haven’t heard anything about the budget (volunteered) don’t know [question 9 not asked] Next, How much of a problem is housing affordability in your part of California? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 59% 28 12 1 big problem somewhat of a problem not a problem don’t know If the state ballot had a bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects, would you vote yes or no? 70% 24 6 yes no don’t know Do you favor or oppose changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in your part of California? 61% 28 11 favor oppose don’t know MAY 2017 On another topic, How big a problem is poverty in your part of California? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 39% 40 20 2 big problem somewhat of a problem not much of a problem don’t know Do you think the gap between the rich and the poor in your part of California is getting larger, getting smaller, or has it stayed the same? 61% 2 33 4 getting larger getting smaller stayed the same don’t know Should the state government do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor in California, or is this something the state government should not be doing? 61% 32 7 should do more should not be doing don’t know Next, Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Donald Trump is handling his job as president? 27% 67 6 approve disapprove don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way the US Congress is handling its job? 26% 66 8 approve disapprove don’t know Do you think things in the United States are going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 29% 65 6 right direction wrong direction don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 24 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months the United States will have good times financially or bad times? 39% 50 11 good times bad times don’t know Changing topics, As you may know, a health reform bill was signed into law in 2010. Given what you know about the health reform law, do you have a [rotate] (1) [generally favorable] [or] (2) [generally unfavorable] opinion of it? [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the health reform law refers to the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, please answer “yes”] [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the health reform law refers to the plan being discussed in Congress last week, please answer “no”] 48% 41 10 generally favorable generally unfavorable don’t know As you may know, the US House of Representatives recently passed a bill to replace the 2010 health reform law. Given what you know about the House bill, do you have a [rotate] (1) [generally favorable] [or] (2) [generally unfavorable] opinion of it? [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the House bill refers to the American Health Care Act, or the Republicans’ and Donald Trump’s health care plan, please answer “yes”] 25% 57 19 generally favorable generally unfavorable don’t know MAY 2017 Do you favor or oppose having guaranteed health insurance coverage in which all Californians would get their insurance through a single state government health plan? (if favor, ask: “Do you favor it even if it means raising taxes?”) 65% 29 6 favor 42 favor, even if it means raising taxes 23 favor, not if it means raising taxes oppose don’t know Next, The California Legislature is considering a “sanctuary state” law that would limit assistance and cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration enforcement, to the fullest extent possible consistent with federal and state law. Do you favor or oppose this proposal? 48% 42 10 favor oppose don’t know When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, do you think it will have [rotate 1 and 2] (1) a positive impact, (2) a negative impact, (3) or not much of an impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in your part of California? 24% 49 21 6 positive impact negative impact not much of an impact don’t know When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, how much do you worry that someone that you know could be deported? Would you say that you worry a lot, some, not much, or not at all? 30% 21 15 32 1 a lot some not much not at all don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 25 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY On another topic, Given what you’ve heard or read, do you think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of last fall’s US presidential election, or not? (if yes, ask: “Do you think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts to influence the election, or not?”) 58% 29 13 yes 47 yes, and Trump campaign intentionally helped 7 yes, but Trump campaign did not help 4 yes, don’t know if Trump campaign helped no don’t know Are you confident or not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the 2016 election will be conducted fairly? 38% 54 8 confident not confident don’t know Changing topics, In general, do you have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program, or are you uneasy about his approach? 28% 68 4 have confidence uneasy don’t know Do you think that Donald Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, or don’t you think so? 21% 70 9 has a clear plan doesn’t have a clear plan don’t know [question 30 not asked] MAY 2017 On another topic, If you had to choose, would you rather have a smaller government providing fewer services, or a bigger government providing more services? 39% 54 7 smaller government, fewer services bigger government, more services don’t know In general, do you think laws covering the sale of guns should be made more strict, less strict, or kept as they are now? 60% 15 23 2 more strict less strict kept as they are now don’t know Next, Next, in general, do you think the use of marijuana should be legal, or not? 56% 41 3 yes, legal no, not legal don’t know As you may know, some states, including California, have decided to allow marijuana use, but it is still prohibited under federal law. Do you think the federal government should or should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states? 38% 60 2 should should not don’t know Regardless of your views on legalizing marijuana in California, do you favor or oppose retail sales of recreational marijuana in your city or community? 48% 47 2 2 favor oppose it depends (volunteered) don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 26 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Next, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote in California? 70% yes [ask q36a] 30 no [skip to q37b] 36a. Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent? 44% 26 5 25 Democrat [ask q37] Republican [skip to q37a] another party (specify) [skip to q38] independent [skip to q37b] Would you call yourself a strong Democrat or not a very strong Democrat? 57% 40 3 strong not very strong don’t know [skip to q38] 37a. Would you call yourself a strong Republican or not a very strong Republican? 57% 42 1 strong not very strong don’t know [skip to q38] 37b. Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican Party or Democratic Party? 20% 46 26 8 Republican Party Democratic Party neither (volunteered) don’t know MAY 2017 Would you consider yourself to be politically: [read list, rotate order top to bottom] 12% 23 30 20 11 4 very liberal somewhat liberal middle-of-the-road somewhat conservative very conservative don’t know Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics? 27% 36 28 8 1 great deal fair amount only a little none don’t know [d1-d14 demographic questions] PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 27 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY ADVISORY COMMITTEE Ruben Barrales President and CEO GROW Elect Angela Glover Blackwell President and CEO PolicyLink Mollyann Brodie Senior Vice President Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Bill Lane Center for the American West Stanford University Jon Cohen Vice President of Survey Research SurveyMonkey Joshua J. Dyck Co-Director Center for Public Opinion University of Massachusetts, Lowell Russell Hancock President and CEO Joint Venture Silicon Valley Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Professor Sol Price School of Public Policy University of Southern California Robert Lapsley President California Business Roundtable Carol S. Larson President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Donna Lucas Chief Executive Officer Lucas Public Affairs Sonja Petek Fiscal and Policy Analyst California Legislative Analyst’s Office Lisa Pitney Vice President of Government Relations The Walt Disney Company Mindy Romero Founder and Director California Civic Engagement Project at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change Robert K. Ross, MD President and CEO The California Endowment Most Reverend Jaime Soto Bishop of Sacramento Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento Carol Whiteside Principal California Strategies The PPIC Statewide Survey Advisory Committee is a diverse group of experts who provide advice on survey issues. However, survey methods, questions, content, and timing are determined solely by PPIC. PPIC BOARD OF DIRECTORS Mas Masumoto, Chair Author and Farmer Mark Baldassare President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Ruben Barrales President and CEO GROW Elect María Blanco Executive Director Undocumented Student Legal Services Center University of California Office of the President Louise Henry Bryson Chair Emerita, Board of Trustees J. Paul Getty Trust A. Marisa Chun Partner McDermott Will & Emery LLP Chet Hewitt President and CEO Sierra Health Foundation Phil Isenberg Former Chair Delta Stewardship Council Donna Lucas Chief Executive Officer Lucas Public Affairs Steven A. Merksamer Senior Partner Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Gross & Leoni, LLP Gerald L. Parsky Chairman Aurora Capital Group Kim Polese Chairman ClearStreet, Inc. Gaddi H. Vasquez Senior Vice President, Government Affairs Edison International Southern California Edison Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 600 San Francisco, CA 94111 T: 415.291.4400 F: 415.291.4401 PPIC.ORG PPIC Sacramento Center Senator Office Building 1121 L Street, Suite 801 Sacramento, CA 95814 T: 916.440.1120 F: 916.440.1121" } ["___content":protected]=> string(102) "

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The PPIC Statewide Survey provides a voice for the public and likely voters— informing policymakers, encouraging discussion, and raising awareness on critical issues of the day. © 2017 Public Policy Institute of California The Public Policy Institute of California is dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC is a public charity. It does not take or support positions on any ballot measures or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. Short sections of text, not to exceed three paragraphs, may be quoted without written permission provided that full attribution is given to the source. Research publications reflect the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of our funders or of the staff, officers, advisory councils, or board of directors of the Public Policy Institute of California. PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY News Release MAY 2017 CONTACT Linda Strean 415-291-4412 Serina Correa 415-291-4417 EMBARGOED: Do not publish or broadcast until 9:00 p.m. PDT on Wednesday, May 31, 2017. Para ver este comunicado de prensa en español, por favor visite nuestra página de internet: www.ppic.org/main/pressreleaseindex.asp PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT Health Care: Most Oppose House Bill, Favor Single-Payer Plan—Unless It Raises Taxes HALF SAY INCREASED US IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT WILL HURT REGIONAL ECONOMIES SAN FRANCISCO, May 31, 2017—Most Californians have an unfavorable opinion of the bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that was passed by the US House of Representatives. A majority favor a single-payer state health insurance program, although support drops to less than half if the plan would require raising taxes. These are among the key findings of a statewide survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) with funding from the James Irvine Foundation. A majority of all adults (57%) and likely voters (64%) say they have a generally unfavorable opinion of the House bill passed earlier this month. In the survey—taken before the Congressional Budget Office released its assessment—most Democrats (75%) and independents (63%) view the bill unfavorably. Republicans are more likely to view it favorably (48%) than unfavorably (33%). When asked about the Affordable Care Act, Californians are divided, with 48 percent of all adults and 49 percent of likely voters having a favorable view of the law. Opinions were similar in January of this year and in December 2015. Partisan differences on this question persist as well: 65 percent of Democrats view the ACA favorably and 72 percent of Republicans view it unfavorably. Independents are split (45% favorable, 45% unfavorable). As the state legislature considers Senate Bill 562, which would establish a single-payer state health insurance program, 65 percent of all adults and 56 percent of likely voters say they favor such a plan. But support falls to 42 percent of adults and 43 percent of likely voters if the plan would raise taxes. Overall, strong majorities of Democrats (75%) and independents (64%) favor a single-payer plan, while a strong majority of Republicans (66%) are opposed. Mark Baldassare, PPIC president and CEO, summed up: “Californians are open to the idea of single-payer health insurance at a time when they are divided about the Affordable Care Act and oppose the House Republicans’ bill to repeal and replace it.” Pessimism about Direction of the Nation Four months after the new president and Congress took office, two-thirds of Californians (65%) believe the United States is going in the wrong direction, and half (50%) expect that the nation will have bad times financially in the next year. About two-thirds (67%) disapprove of the way President Trump is handling his job (27% approve). Strong majorities of Democrats (88%) and independents (70%) disapprove of the president’s job performance, while PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 3 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 a strong majority of Republicans (74%) approve. Only 26 percent of adults approve of the way Congress is handling its job—a 10-point drop from March. Notably, approval of Congress among Republicans (32% approve) has declined by 16 points since March. “Californians have become more pessimistic about the nation’s direction and the US economy since the beginning of the year,” Baldassare said. “Less than a third of state residents approve of the president and Congress today.” Half Worry That Someone They Know Could Be Deported Asked about the effect of increased federal immigration enforcement, about half of Californians (49%) say it will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in their part of California. Fewer say it will have a positive impact (24%) or not much of an impact (21%). A strong majority of Democrats (66%) and half of independents (50%) say increased enforcement will hurt the economy in their part of the state, while 48 percent of Republicans say it will have a positive impact. The survey also asked a more personal question about immigration: how much do you worry that someone you know could be deported? Half of adults say they worry a lot (30%) or some (21%). Fewer say they don’t worry much (15%) or at all (32%). Most Latinos (59%) say they worry a lot that someone they know could be deported, as do half of residents born outside the United States (50%). Californians under age 55 are much more likely than older adults to say that they worry a lot (36% to 19%). “In the context of increased federal immigration enforcement, many Californians think this will have negative impacts on their local economy and fear that someone they know will be deported,” Baldassare said. The legislature is considering a “sanctuary state” law that would limit cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration officials. When asked their opinions of the proposal, 48 percent of adults are in favor and 42 percent are opposed. Our January survey asked more generally if Californians favored the state and local government making policies—separate from the federal government—to protect the legal rights of undocumented immigrants in California. The response then: 65 percent of adults and 58 percent of likely voters were in favor. Most Believe Russia Tried to Influence Election Amid investigations into Russia’s activities during the presidential campaign, 58 percent of Californians say they think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the election. Nearly half of Californians (47%) say members of the Trump campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. How confident are Californians that the congressional investigation of Russia’s role will be conducted fairly? Only 38 percent say they are confident and 54 percent say they are not. Again, partisan differences are stark: 56 percent of Republicans are confident the investigation will be fair, while 61 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of independents are not. Skeptical of Trump’s Approach on North Korea, Syria As North Korea continues tests to advance its missile technology, only 28 percent of Californians have confidence in the president’s ability to handle the situation with that nation’s nuclear program, and 68 percent are uneasy about his approach. Just 21 percent of Californians think Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, while 70 percent think he does not. Most Oppose Federal Enforcement of Marijuana Laws in State The Trump administration has indicated it may increase enforcement of federal laws prohibiting the use of marijuana in states that have legalized its use. Solid majorities of Californians (60% adults, 66% likely voters) oppose enforcement of these federal laws. Strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 4 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 as well as a slight majority of Republicans (51%) say the federal government should not enforce these laws. As local governments consider regulations to implement marijuana legalization, about half of adults (48%) and likely voters (53%) favor retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Residents of Orange/San Diego (43%) are the least likely to favor retail sales, compared with about half of residents in other regions. Jobs, Economy Seen as Top State Issue Californians are most likely to name jobs and the economy as the top issue facing people in California today (22%), as they did last May. However, this issue is less frequently mentioned than it was a year ago (30% May 2016). The second most frequently named issue today is immigration (11%). When asked to assess their own financial situation, 40 percent of adults say they are in excellent or good shape. On the issue of poverty, 39 percent of adults say it is a big problem in their part of the state (40% somewhat of a problem). A solid majority of adults (61%) say the gap between the rich and the poor is getting larger in their part of California, while a third (33%) say it has stayed the same and 2 percent say it is getting smaller. Should state government do more to reduce the gap between rich and poor? A solid majority (61%) say yes. A third (32%) say the state should not do more. Regional Housing Affordability Viewed as Big Problem Most adults (59%) say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of the state. Opinions range widely across California. Fewer than half say it is a big problem in the Central Valley (35%) and Inland Empire (46%), compared to majorities in Orange/San Diego (59%), Los Angeles (63%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (79%). As the legislature considers several bills focusing on affordability, 47 percent of adults say the cost of their housing is placing a financial strain on them—a lot of strain, according to 27 percent. Majorities of renters (61%), those who are younger than age 55 (54%), those with annual household incomes below $40,000 (59%), those with children in the household (57%), or those with no college education (55%) say that housing costs are a financial strain. Latinos (55%), African Americans (54%), and Asian Americans (48%) are somewhat more likely than whites (39%) to say that housing costs are a strain. The survey asks about two housing policies under consideration.  State bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects: 70 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters would vote yes, including solid majorities across the state’s regions. But partisans differ, with 81 percent of Democrats and 61 percent of independents in favor, compared to only 34 percent of Republicans.  Changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting: 61 percent of adults and just under half of likely voters (47%) are in favor of doing this to make housing more affordable in their part of the state. Across parties, Republicans (59%) are somewhat more likely than Democrats (51%) to be in favor. “Many Californians feel financial strain over their housing costs and even more perceive housing affordability to be a big problem in their region,” Baldassare said. “Many favor state government actions to address this crisis.” Majorities Favor Governor’s Revised Budget When Californians are read a brief description of Governor Brown’s revised state budget for the next fiscal year, 63 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters say they are in favor of the plan, which includes increased spending for K–12 education and the state’s rainy day fund. In January, opinion was less favorable toward his budget, which included slowing education spending (47% adults, 43% likely voters in favor). The governor’s job approval rating is 52 percent among all adults and 50 percent among likely voters, similar to his rating in April. The legislature’s job approval rating is also similar to what it was in April: 46 percent among all adults and 41 percent among likely voters. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 5 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Federal Issues Key Findings  Two in three Californians believe the United States is going in the wrong direction and half say they expect bad times financially. Twenty-seven percent of adults approve of President Trump and a similar share approve of Congress. (page 7)  Most Californians (58%) think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the presidential election—and nearly half of adults think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. Just over half are not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the election will be conducted fairly. (page 8)  About half of Californians view the Affordable Care Act favorably, with partisans sharply divided. One in four Californians have a favorable view of the health care bill recently passed by the House. Two in three Californians support single-payer health insurance. (page 9)  Half of Californians think increased federal immigration enforcement will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy. Half worry a lot (30%) or some (21%) about someone they know being deported. (page 10)  Two in three Californians are uneasy about Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program. A similar proportion think that Donald Trump does not have a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria. (page 11)  Most Californians would rather have a bigger government providing more services (54%) than a smaller government providing fewer services (39%). Sixty percent of Californians think gun laws should be stricter. (page 12) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Percent all adults Percent all adults MAY 2017 Do you think things in the United States are going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 100 80 60 50 43 40 Right direction Wrong direction 65 57 36 29 20 0 Oct-16 Jan-17 May-17 Do you think that during the next 12 months the US will have good times financially or bad times? 100 Good times Bad times 80 60 46 39 40 52 39 50 39 20 0 Oct-16 Jan-17 May-17 Support for guaranteed health insurance coverage through a single state government health plan Favor, even if it means raising taxes Favor, not if it means raising taxes Oppose Don't know 6 29 42 23 Californians and Their Government 6 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Approval of Federal Elected Officials Optimism about the country is low: only 29 percent of adults say things in the United States are going in the right direction (65% wrong direction), while 39 percent expect good economic times in the next 12 months (50% bad times). After four months in office, President Trump receives low approval ratings among Californians (27%) and likely voters (33%). Approval of the president was similarly low in January (30% adults, 34% likely voters) and March (31% adults, 35% likely voters). Today, a strong majority of Republicans (74%) approve, while strong majorities of Democrats (88%) and independents (70%) disapprove. Fewer than four in ten Californians across age, income, and education groups approve of the president. In a recent Gallup weekly tracking poll, adults nationwide (38%) are more likely to approve of President Trump. “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Donald Trump is handling his job as president?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 27% 67% 6% Likely voters 33 63 3 Democrats 10 88 2 Party Republicans 74 23 4 Independents 24 70 6 Central Valley 36 58 6 Inland Empire 35 55 11 Region Los Angeles 18 76 6 Orange/San Diego 31 64 5 San Francisco Bay Area 23 73 4 Only 26 percent of Californians approve of the way the US Congress is handling its job a 10 point decrease from March. Among likely voters, 19 percent approve of Congress  an 8 point decrease since March. Solid majorities across parties disapprove. Notably, among California Republicans, approval of Congress has declined by 16 points since March. A third of adults or fewer across all regions and demographic groups approve of the way Congress is handling its job. A recent Gallup poll found similar approval levels of Congress among adults nationwide (20% approve, 74% disapprove). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the US Congress is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 26% 66% 8% Likely voters 19 76 5 Democrats 15 82 3 Party Republicans 32 62 6 Independents 19 73 7 Central Valley 30 64 7 Inland Empire 28 57 15 Region Los Angeles 25 67 8 Orange/San Diego 29 65 7 San Francisco Bay Area 22 71 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 7 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 US Election and Russia Amid an ongoing investigation into the activities of the Russian government during the 2016 campaign and in the wake of President Trump firing FBI director James Comey, do Californians think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of the presidential election? Fifty-eight percent of Californians think there was Russian interference—including 47 percent of Californians who think members of the Trump campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts. According to an April Washington Post/ABC News poll, a similar share of adults nationwide think the Russian government tried to influence the election (56%), although somewhat fewer believe the Trump campaign was involved (39%). Partisans view this issue very differently: 79 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of independents think the Russians did try to influence the election, compared with only 28 percent of Republicans. Residents in Los Angeles (65%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (63%) are most likely to think there was Russian interference (57% Orange/San Diego, 53% Central Valley, 49% Inland Empire). Half or more across demographic groups hold this view. Among those who approve of President Trump, 64 percent say the Russian government did not interfere, while 66 percent of those who disapprove of his performance say members of his campaign helped Russian efforts. “Given what you’ve heard or read, do you think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of last fall’s US presidential election, or not? (If yes: Do you think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts to influence the election, or not?)” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Likely voters Yes 58% 79% 28% 59% 61% Yes, and Trump campaign intentionally helped 47 70 12 42 Yes, and Trump campaign did not intentionally help 7 5 13 11 Yes, don’t know if Trump campaign intentionally helped 4 4 3 6 No 29 13 59 33 47 9 5 32 Don’t know 13 8 13 9 7 How confident are Californians that the Congressional investigation of Russia’s role will be conducted fairly? Fewer than four in ten Californians (38%) are confident that Congress’s investigation will be fair, while 54 percent are not confident. Fifty percent of adults nationwide in the Washington Post/ABC News poll were not confident. Majorities of California Democrats and independents are not confident, while most Republicans are. Residents in Orange/San Diego (58%), Los Angeles (57%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (56%) are more likely to lack confidence compared to those in the Inland Empire (43%) and the Central Valley (41%). At least half across demographic groups are not confident. “Are you confident or not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the 2016 election will be conducted fairly?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Confident 38% 35% 56% 34% 41% Not confident 54 61 37 62 55 Don’t know 84 7 44 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 8 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Health Care Policy As the US Senate considers a bill that would replace the Affordable Care Act, 48 percent of Californians have a generally favorable opinion of the 2010 health reform law, while 41 percent have a generally unfavorable opinion. Opinions about the law were similar in January of this year (51% favorable, 39% unfavorable) and in December 2015 (51% favorable, 42% unfavorable). Californians’ views on the health reform law are similar to those of adults nationwide (48% favorable, 41% unfavorable), according to an April Kaiser Family Foundation survey. Notably, there are stark partisan differences on this issue: while two in three Democrats (65%) have a favorable opinion of the 2010 health reform law, nearly three in four Republicans (72%) view it unfavorably. Independents are divided (45% favorable, 45% unfavorable). Californians with health insurance (50%) are more likely than those without health insurance (37%) to have a favorable opinion of the law. “As you may know, a health reform bill was signed into law in 2010. Given what you know about the health reform law, do you have a generally favorable or generally unfavorable opinion of it?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favorable 48% 65% 19% 45% 49% Unfavorable 41 27 72 45 46 Don’t know 10 8 9 10 5 On May 4, by a vote of 217 to 213, the US House of Representatives passed a bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. When asked about the House bill, a majority of California adults (57%) and likely voters (64%) have a generally unfavorable opinion. Strong majorities of Democrats (75%) and independents (63%) have an unfavorable opinion of the bill while Republicans are more likely to view it favorably (48%) than unfavorably (33%). Across regions, fewer than four in ten Californians have a favorable view of the House bill. Moreover, fewer than three in ten Californians across age, income, and racial/ethnic groups have a favorable opinion of the House health care bill. “As you may know, the US House of Representatives recently passed a bill to replace the 2010 health reform law. Given what you know about the House bill, do you have a generally favorable or generally unfavorable opinion of it?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favorable 25% 12% 48% 20% 24% Unfavorable 57 75 33 63 64 Don’t know 19 13 18 17 11 The state legislature is currently considering Senate Bill 562, which would establish a single-payer state health insurance program to cover all Californians. How do Californians feel about this idea? Sixty-five percent of adults and 56 percent of likely voters favor a single-payer state plan. But if this plan would require raising taxes, support declines (42% adults still favor, 43% likely voters still favor). Overall across parties, a strong majority of Democrats (75%) and independents (64%) favor a single-payer state system while a strong majority of Republicans (66%) are opposed. Notably, 59 percent of Democrats would favor a single-payer program even if it means higher taxes, though support among independents falls to 44 percent. Though majorities across all demographic groups favor a single-payer system, if raising taxes is required, support falls below 50 percent for all groups with the exception of college graduates. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 9 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Immigration Policy Nearly half of adults and likely voters (49% each) think that increased immigration enforcement will have a negative impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in their part of California. Fewer say that it will have a positive impact (24% adults, 27% likely voters) or not much of an impact (21% adults, 20% likely voters). While a strong majority of Democrats (66%) and half of independents (50%) say increased enforcement will have a negative impact on their local economy, a plurality of Republicans (48%) say it will have a positive impact. About half across regions, with the exception of the Inland Empire (36%), say it will have a negative impact. Latinos (56%) and African Americans (54%) are somewhat more likely than whites (45%) and Asian Americans (43%) to say increased immigration enforcement will have a negative economic impact in their part of California. College graduates are more likely than those without a college degree (58% to 45%), and Californians under age 55 are more likely than those 55 and older (52% to 42%) to say that it will have a negative impact. “When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, do you think it will have a positive impact, a negative impact, or not much of an impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in your part of California?” Positive impact All adults 24% Central Valley 27% Inland Empire 30% Region Los Angeles 20% Orange/ San Diego 23% San Francisco Bay Area 23% Likely voters 27% Negative impact 49 48 36 53 52 51 49 Not much of an impact 21 18 26 20 21 21 20 Don’t know 67 8 7 4 55 Half of Californians say they worry a lot (30%) or some (21%) that someone they know could be deported. Notably, 59 percent of Latinos and 50 percent of residents not born in the United States say they worry a lot. Californians under age 55 are much more likely than older adults to say that they worry a lot (36% to 19%). Across regions, between 27 and 34 percent say they worry a lot that someone they know could be deported. “When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, how much do you worry that someone that you know could be deported? Would you say that you worry a lot, some, not much, or not at all?” A lot Some Not much Not at all Don’t know All adults 30% 21 15 32 1 African Americans 33% 21 15 30 1 Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 13% 59% 29 19 16 7 37 15 5– Whites 14% 21 21 43 1 Born in United States Yes No 20% 50% 22 20 18 8 39 19 12 Likely voters 19% 21 20 38 2 In our January survey, 65 percent of adults and 58 percent of likely voters favored the state and local government making their own policies and taking action, separate from the federal government, to protect the legal rights of undocumented immigrants in California (80% Democrats, 59% independents, 27% Republicans in favor). Today, when asked specifically about a proposed “sanctuary state” law that would limit assistance and cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration enforcement, 48 percent of adults and 43 percent of likely voters are in favor. Partisans are divided (56% Democrats, 41% independents, 19% Republicans in favor). PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 10 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 International Affairs In Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office, two international affairs stand out: the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program and the situation in Syria. In both cases, Californians offer pessimistic assessments. North Korea has continued tests to advance its missile technology with the stated goal of eventually being able to deliver a nuclear warhead to the continental United States. Only 28 percent of Californians have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program; 68 percent are uneasy about his approach. Adults nationwide were more confident (39% confident, 56% uneasy) in an April CBS News poll. Most Republicans (71%) are confident about his ability to handle the situation, while most independents (67%) and Democrats (87%) are uneasy. Though majorities across regions and demographic groups are uneasy about his approach, differences do emerge. Across regions, more than seven in ten residents in Los Angeles (77%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (73%) are uneasy, with about six in ten in the other regions of the state holding this view. African Americans (89%) and Latinos (85%) are far more likely than Asian Americans and whites (56% each) to be uneasy about his approach. “In general, do you have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program, or are you uneasy about his approach?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Have confidence 28% 12% 71% 30% Uneasy about his approach 68 87 25 67 Don’t know 41 4 3 Likely voters 33% 64 2 In the wake of chemical weapons being used against Syrian civilians, including women and children, President Trump ordered a military strike against the Syrian regime. Seven in ten Californians think Donald Trump does not have a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, while one in five say that he does. Adults nationwide were more likely to say he has a clear plan (32% has a clear plan, 61% does not) in an April Pew Research Center poll. Nearly all Democrats (90%) and seven in ten independents think Donald Trump does not have a clear plan, while 56 percent of Republicans say that he does. Majorities of Californians across regions and more than six in ten across demographic groups say he does not have a clear plan. However, there are large regional differences, with residents in Los Angeles (80%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (77%) more likely than those in Orange/San Diego (64%), the Central Valley (61%), and the Inland Empire (54%) to say he does not have a clear plan. Differences also emerge across racial/ethnic groups, with African Americans (89%) the most likely to say he does not have a plan, followed by Asian Americans (77%), Latinos (75%), and whites (62%). “Do you think that Donald Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, or don’t you think so?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Has a clear plan 21% 7% 56% 21% Doesn’t have a clear plan 70 90 34 71 Don’t know 9 3 10 8 Likely voters 25% 69 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 11 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Role of Government More than half of Californians (54%) prefer a bigger government providing more services rather than a smaller government providing fewer services (39%). Californians held similar views last March (57% bigger government, 39% smaller government). Today, likely voters are evenly divided (46% bigger, 47% smaller). Adults nationwide were divided on this question (48% bigger, 45% smaller) in the April Pew Research Center survey. Unsurprisingly, partisans are deeply split on the optimal size of government: 67 percent of Democrats prefer a bigger government and 79 percent of Republicans prefer a smaller government. Residents in the San Francisco Bay Area (61%) and Los Angeles (59%) are the most likely to prefer a bigger government, followed by those in the Central Valley (50%), Orange/San Diego (49%), and the Inland Empire (44%). Majorities of Latinos (73%), Asian Americans (62%), and African Americans (55%) prefer a bigger government, while 54 percent of whites prefer a smaller government. The preference for a bigger government declines as age and income increase and is more common among those with a high school degree or less, compared with more-educated Californians. “If you had to choose, would you rather have a smaller government providing fewer services, or a bigger government providing more services?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind Smaller government 39% 24% 79% 51% Bigger government 54 67 16 43 Don’t know 78 5 7 Likely voters 47% 46 7 In 2016, state legislation and a voter-approved ballot initiative both created new gun regulations in California. When asked if, in general, gun laws should be made more or less strict, most Californians (60%) think laws covering the sale of guns should be stricter; 15 percent say they should be less strict and 23 percent say they should be kept as they are now. Findings were similar in September 2015 (65% more strict, 10% less strict, 23% kept as they are now). According to the April CBS News poll, 54 percent of adults nationwide say laws should be more strict (11% less strict, 33% kept as they are now). Most Democrats (72%) and half of independents (51%) say gun laws should be stricter, while a plurality of Republicans (38%) say they should be kept as they are now (28% more strict, 32% less strict). Residents in Los Angeles (70%), the San Francisco Bay Area (69%), and Orange/San Diego (61%) are more likely than those in the Central Valley (47%) and the Inland Empire (43%) to think laws should be stricter. Women (70%) are far more likely than men (49%) to hold this view. Latinos (73%), Asian Americans (72%), and African Americans (67%) tend to think gun laws should be stricter while only 46 percent of whites hold this view. “In general, do you think laws covering the sale of guns should be made more strict, less strict, or kept as they are now?” All adults Dem Party Rep Ind More strict 60% 72% 28% 51% Less strict 15 7 32 18 Kept as they are now 23 20 38 30 Don’t know 21 2 1 Likely voters 55% 19 25 1 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 12 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY State Issues Key Findings  Fifty-two percent of adults and 50 percent of likely voters approve of Governor Brown. Forty-six percent of adults and 41 percent of likely voters approve of the California Legislature. (page 14)  Forty-three percent of adults and half of likely voters think the state budget situation is a big problem today, with partisans divided. About six in ten favor Governor Brown’s revised budget plan. (page 15)  Twenty-two percent name jobs and the economy as the most important issue facing the state. Forty percent rate their personal financial situation as excellent or good, and 47 percent say the cost of housing is a financial strain, with wide differences by income. (page 16)  Six in ten say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of California, with wide differences across regions. Majorities of adults and likely voters would vote yes on a state bond for affordable housing. Adults and likely voters are more likely to favor than to oppose changing permitting and regulation to make housing more affordable. (page 17)  Four in ten adults and likely voters say poverty is a big problem in their part of California, and solid majorities say the gap between rich and poor is getting larger. Majorities say the state should do more to reduce this gap. (page 18)  Fifty-six percent of adults say that in general marijuana use should be legal, and about half favor retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Solid majorities of adults and likely voters say the federal government should not enforce federal marijuana laws in states that have allowed its use. (page 19) PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Percent MAY 2017 Approval ratings of state elected officials 100 Governor Brown California Legislature 80 Percent all adults 60 52 46 40 20 0 May-12 May-13 May-14 May-15 May-16 May-17 Percent all adults Perception that the state budget situation is a big problem 100 80 60 40 20 0 43 Perception that housing affordability is a big problem in your part of California 100 79 80 63 59 60 46 40 35 20 0 Central Valley Inland Empire Los Orange/San SF Bay Angeles Diego Area Californians and Their Government 13 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Approval of State Elected Officials In the wake of the May budget revision, 52 percent of adults and 50 percent of likely voters approve of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California. Brown’s approval rating was similar in April (49% adults, 52% likely voters) and last May (52% adults, 50% likely voters). Democrats (71%) are much more likely than independents (46%) and Republicans (24%) to approve. Approval is highest in the San Francisco Bay Area (62%) and Los Angeles (56%); in other regions it is below 50 percent. Latinos (60%), African Americans (57%), and Asian Americans (56%) give higher approval ratings than whites (46%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 52% 32% 16% Likely voters 50 40 9 Democrats 71 17 12 Party Republicans 24 72 3 Independents 46 40 13 Central Valley 46 35 19 Inland Empire 47 36 17 Region Los Angeles 56 29 15 Orange/San Diego 45 38 16 San Francisco Bay Area 62 23 15 As the June budget deadline approaches, 46 percent of adults and 41 percent of likely voters approve of the way the California Legislature is handling its job. Approval was similar in April (49% adults, 44% likely voters) and last May (43% adults, 38% likely voters). Today, a solid majority of Democrats (64%) approve, while fewer independents (37%) and Republicans (14%) do so. Approval is highest in the San Francisco Bay Area (52%) and Los Angeles (50%); in other regions it is below 50 percent. Latinos (56%) and Asian Americans (55%) are somewhat more approving than African Americans (44%) and whites (38%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California Legislature is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don’t know All adults 46% 38% 15% Likely voters 41 46 12 Democrats 64 23 13 Party Republicans 14 76 10 Independents 37 51 11 Central Valley 40 46 14 Inland Empire 40 47 12 Region Los Angeles 50 35 15 Orange/San Diego 45 42 13 San Francisco Bay Area 52 32 17 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 14 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Governor’s Budget Proposal As the legislature considers the governor’s state budget plan for the next fiscal year, fewer than one in ten Californians (6% adults, 8% likely voters) name the state budget as the top problem facing the people of California today. Reflecting a steep decline in the public’s level of concern five to seven years ago, 43 percent of California adults and 49 percent of likely voters say the state budget situation is a big problem today. The responses were lower among likely voters in January (37% adults, 38% likely voters) and similar last May (44% adults, 51% likely voters). Today, Republicans (72%) are much more likely than independents (51%) and Democrats (33%) to call the state budget situation a big problem. Fewer than half across age, education, and income groups say the state budget situation is a big problem. “Do you think the state budget situation in California—that is, the balance between government spending and revenues—is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Big problem 43% 33% 72% 51% 49% Somewhat of a problem 37 42 17 35 32 Not a problem 13 18 8 9 14 Don’t know 77 3 55 Governor Brown recently released his May revision of the $124 billion state General Fund budget plan for the next fiscal year. After hearing a description of the plan, which includes increased spending for K–12 education and the state’s rainy day fund, 63 percent of adults and 57 percent of likely voters are in favor. In January, opinion was much less favorable toward the governor’s budget plan (47% adults, 43% likely voters), which included slowing education spending. Last May, support was similar for the governor’s revised budget proposal, which also included increased education spending (65% adults, 60% likely voters). Today, Democrats (81%) are far more likely than independents (59%) and Republicans (28%) to favor the current plan. Majorities are in favor across the state’s regions and age, education, income, and racial/ethnic groups. “Governor Brown recently released a revised budget plan of about $124 billion in the General Fund for the next fiscal year, which will increase overall spending by about 1 percent, including $2.8 billion increased spending on K–12 education, about $1.8 billion for the state’s rainy day fund, and no new taxes. In general, do you favor or oppose the governor’s budget plan?” All adults Favor 63% Oppose 26% Don’t know/ have not heard anything about the budget 11% Likely voters 57 33 10 Democrats 81 13 6 Party Republicans 28 60 12 Independents 59 30 10 Central Valley 56 31 13 Inland Empire 60 30 10 Region Los Angeles 69 20 11 Orange/San Diego 61 31 8 San Francisco Bay Area 67 23 10 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 15 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 The Economy and Personal Finances Californians are most likely to name jobs and the economy as the top issue facing people in California today (22% adults, 19% likely voters). Last May, this was also the top issue, but at a higher rate (30% adults, 32% likely voters). Compared to a year ago, Californians mention water and the drought less often (16% to 6%) and more often name immigration (6% to 11%); government in general, elected officials, and President Trump (3% to 8%); and health care (2% to 6%). In light of current economic trends, how are Californians evaluating their own personal financial situation today? Forty percent of adults and 51 percent of likely voters say they are in excellent or good shape financially. In our December 2013 survey, similar proportions of adults (39%) and likely voters (51%) rated their personal finances as excellent or good, but fewer gave positive ratings in our December 2011 survey (33% adults, 40% likely voters). However, today there are large differences in the excellent or good ratings of personal finances across income groups (19% under $40,000; 41% $40,000 to $80,000; 72% $80,000 or more) and between renters (29%) and homeowners (57%). Excellent and good ratings of personal finances are higher among whites (50%) and Asian Americans (43%) than among Latinos (29%) and African Americans (28%). The excellent and good ratings of personal finances are higher in Orange/San Diego (48%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (45%) than in other regions (36% Inland Empire, 35% Central Valley, 35% Los Angeles). “How would you rate your own personal financial situation? Would you say you are in excellent shape, good shape, only fair shape, or poor shape financially?” Excellent shape All adults 7% Under $40,000 2% Household income $40,000 to $80,000 5% $80,000 or more 17% Likely voters 11% Good shape 33 17 36 55 40 Fair shape 40 48 43 25 35 Poor shape 19 32 15 4 13 Don’t know –– – – 1 As the legislature considers a plethora of bills to address the rising cost of housing in California, 47 percent of adults and 38 percent of likely voters say that their housing costs place a financial strain on them today. Twenty-seven percent of adults and 20 percent of likely voters say these costs place a lot of financial strain on them. The perception of “a lot” of strain is similar across regions (30% Central Valley, 30% Los Angeles, 27% Orange/San Diego, 26% San Francisco Bay Area, 25% Inland Empire) but it varies across partisan groups (29% independents, 25% Democrats, 14% Republicans). The cost of housing has more financial impact on certain groups. Majorities of renters (61%), those who are younger than age 55 (54%), those with annual household incomes below $40,000 (59%), those with children in the household (57%), or those with no college education (55%) say that housing costs are a financial strain. Latinos (55%), African Americans (54%), and Asian Americans (48%) are somewhat more likely than whites (39%) to say that housing costs are a strain. “Does the cost of your housing place a financial strain on you and your family today?” All adults Under $40,000 Household income $40,000 to $80,000 $80,000 or more Likely voters Yes 47% 59% 44% 35% 38% No 52 40 56 65 62 Don’t know 11 1 1 1 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 16 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Regional Housing Affordability Majorities of adults (59%) and likely voters (66%) say housing affordability is a big problem in their part of California (among adults, 28% say somewhat of a problem, 12% not a problem). Opinions range widely across the state: fewer than half say it is a big problem in the Central Valley (35%) and Inland Empire (46%), compared to majorities in Orange/San Diego (59%), Los Angeles (63%), and the San Francisco Bay Area (79%). Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (74%) are the most likely to say housing affordability is a big problem where they live (65% whites, 55% Asian Americans, 50% Latinos). Majorities across parties agree (64% Democrats, 62% independents, 58% Republicans). We asked Californians about two housing policies under consideration in the state legislature. Seven in ten adults and 57 percent of likely voters say they would vote yes on a state bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects. This includes solid majorities across the state’s regions (74% Inland Empire, 73% Los Angeles, 72% San Francisco Bay Area, 68% Central Valley, 64% Orange/San Diego). There are wide partisan differences on this question, with 81 percent of Democrats, 61 percent of independents, and 34 percent of Republicans saying they would vote yes. Across racial/ethnic groups, overwhelming majorities of African Americans (90%), Latinos (84%), and Asian Americans (82%) would vote yes, along with a smaller majority of whites (56%). “If the state ballot had a bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects, would you vote yes or no?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Yes 70% 81% 34% 61% 57% No 24 15 58 31 36 Don’t know 64 8 98 A solid majority of adults (61%) and a plurality of likely voters (47%) favor changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in their part of the state. Majorities across regions are in favor (68% Inland Empire, 63% Los Angeles, 60% Central Valley, 60% Orange/San Diego, 55% San Francisco Bay Area). Across parties, Republicans (59%) are somewhat more likely than Democrats (51%) to be in favor. Majorities of Latinos (80%), African Americans (72%), and Asian Americans (58%) are in favor, compared to fewer than half of whites (47%). “Do you favor or oppose changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in your part of California?” All adults Dem Party Rep Likely Ind voters Favor Oppose 61% 28 51% 37 59% 26 54% 32 47% 39 Don’t know 11 12 15 13 14 There are some similar patterns in support for both proposals to address housing affordability. Renters are far more likely than homeowners to support an affordable housing bond (82% to 54%) or to favor changing environmental regulations and permitting (70% to 50%). The likelihood of supporting either proposal decreases as income levels increase, and support is much more likely among those with no college education and among adults younger than age 55. Those who say their own housing costs are a financial strain are more likely than others to support a bond (79% to 63%) or to favor changing environmental regulations and permitting (66% to 56%). PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 17 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Poverty and Inequality About four in ten adults (39%) and likely voters (40%) say poverty is a big problem in their part of California (among adults, 40% say somewhat of a problem, 20% not much of a problem). Residents of Los Angeles (49%) and the Central Valley (45%) are more likely than those in the Inland Empire (35%), the San Francisco Bay Area (34%), and Orange/San Diego (27%) to say poverty is a big problem where they live. Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (58%) are the most likely to say poverty is a big problem in their area (41% Latinos, 39% whites, 25% Asian Americans). Renters (43%) are slightly more likely than homeowners (35%) to say the same. Across parties, Republicans are more likely than Democrats to say poverty is not much of a problem where they live (26% to 16%). Solid majorities of adults (61%) and likely voters (66%) think the gap between the rich and the poor is getting larger in their part of California. Majorities across racial/ethnic groups agree (72% African Americans, 64% whites, 57% Asian Americans, 56% Latinos), as do majorities across regions, including seven in ten San Francisco Bay Area residents (69%). Across parties, Democrats and independents (70% each) are more likely than Republicans (49%) to say the same. Homeowners and renters (61% each) are equally likely to say the gap between rich and poor is getting larger where they live, and similar shares hold this view across income and age groups. The likelihood of saying so is greater as education levels increase. “Do you think the gap between the rich and the poor in your part of California is getting larger, getting smaller, or has it stayed the same?” Getting larger Getting smaller Stayed the same Don’t know All adults 61% 2 33 4 Central Valley 58% 2 36 4 Inland Empire 53% 4 36 7 Region Los Angeles 64% 2 30 4 Orange/ San Diego 58% 2 35 4 San Francisco Bay Area 69% 2 25 4 Likely voters 66% 2 28 4 Six in ten adults (61%) and a majority of likely voters (52%) say the state government should do more to reduce the gap between rich and poor in California. A third of adults (32%) and 41 percent of likely voters say the state government should not do this. Three in four Democrats (74%) and 55 percent of independents say the state government should do more to reduce the gap, and a strong majority of Republicans (67%) say the state should not do so. Renters (69%) and those with household incomes below $40,000 (73%) are much more likely than homeowners (50%) and those with higher incomes (53%) to say the state should do more. Across racial/ethnic groups, African Americans (81%), Latinos (73%), and Asian Americans (62%) are more likely than whites (49%) to say the state should do more. Californians who think poverty is a big problem where they live are much more likely than those who think it is not much of a problem to say the state should do more (68% to 49%). “Should the state government do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor in California, or is this something the state government should not be doing?” Should do more All adults 61% African Americans 81% Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 62% 73% Whites 49% Should not be doing 32 13 28 19 45 Don’t know 7 6 10 8 6 Likely voters 52% 41 7 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 18 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 Marijuana Legalization In 2016, California voters passed Proposition 64 to “In general, should the use of marijuana be legal?” legalize the recreational use of marijuana (57% yes). Today, 56 percent of adults and 63 percent of likely 80 Yes, legal No, not legal voters say that, in general, the use of marijuana should be legal. In our October survey, 53 percent of adults and 60 56 Percent all adults 57 percent of likely voters said the same. Currently, strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%) say use should be legal, while a 40 41 slight majority of Republicans (51%) say it should not be 20 legal. In an April CBS News poll, 61 percent of adults nationwide said marijuana use should be legal. The Trump administration has indicated that it may 0 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 increase enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states that have legalized its use. Solid majorities of California adults (60%) and likely voters (66%) say the federal government should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states. Opinion was similar when we asked another version of this question in September 2013 (61% adults and 68% likely voters said should not enforce). Today, strong majorities of Democrats (72%) and independents (68%), and a slight majority of Republicans (51%), say the federal government should not enforce these laws. Whites and African Americans are more likely than Latinos to say so. Among those who say marijuana should be legal, 79 percent say the federal government should not enforce these laws, as do 37 percent of those who say marijuana use should not be legal. “As you may know, some states, including California, have decided to allow marijuana use, but it is still prohibited under federal law. Do you think the federal government should or should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states?” Should All adults 38% African Americans 30% Race/Ethnicity Asian Americans Latinos 41% 50% Whites 29% Should not 60 68 56 49 69 Don’t know 22 41 2 Likely voters 32% 66 2 As local governments consider regulations to implement marijuana legalization, about half of adults (48%) and likely voters (53%) are in favor of retail sales of recreational marijuana in their communities. Residents of Orange/San Diego (43%) are least likely to support this idea, while about half in other regions favor it. Young adults are more likely than older adults (age 35 and above), and whites (56%) and African Americans (55%) are somewhat more likely than Asian Americans (41%) and Latinos (40%) to be in favor. Democrats (61%) and independents (58%) are far more likely than Republicans (36%) to support this idea. “Regardless of your views on legalizing marijuana in California, do you favor or oppose retail sales of recreational marijuana in your city or community?” All adults 18 to 34 Age 35 to 54 55 and older Favor 48% 61% 43% 40% Oppose It depends (volunteered) 47 37 49 57 21 4 2 Don’t know 21 4 1 Likely voters 53% 43 3 2 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 19 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Regional Map MAY 2017 PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 20 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Methodology MAY 2017 The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, president and CEO and survey director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance from survey research associate David Kordus, project manager for this survey, associate survey director Dean Bonner, and survey research associate Lunna Lopes. The Californians and Their Government series is supported with funding from the James Irvine Foundation, the California Endowment, and the PPIC Donor Circle. The PPIC Statewide Survey invites input, comments, and suggestions from policy and public opinion experts and from its own advisory committee, but survey methods, questions, and content are determined solely by PPIC’s survey team. Findings in this report are based on a survey of 1,707 California adult residents, including 1,107 interviewed on cell phones and 600 interviewed on landline telephones. Interviews took an average of 18 minutes to complete. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights from May 12–22, 2017. Cell phone interviews were conducted using a computer-generated random sample of cell phone numbers. All cell phone numbers with California area codes were eligible for selection. Once a cell phone user was reached, it was verified that this person was age 18 or older, a resident of California, and in a safe place to continue the survey (e.g., not driving). Cell phone respondents were offered a small reimbursement to help defray the cost of the call. Cell phone interviews were conducted with adults who have cell phone service only and with those who have both cell phone and landline service in the household. Landline interviews were conducted using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers that ensured that both listed and unlisted numbers were called. All landline telephone exchanges in California were eligible for selection. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (age 18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. For both cell phones and landlines, telephone numbers were called as many as eight times. When no contact with an individual was made, calls to a number were limited to six. Also, to increase our ability to interview Asian American adults, we made up to three additional calls to phone numbers estimated by Survey Sampling International as likely to be associated with Asian American individuals. Live landline and cell phone interviews were conducted by Abt Associates in English and Spanish, according to respondents’ preferences. Accent on Languages, Inc., translated new survey questions into Spanish, with assistance from Renatta DeFever. Abt Associates uses the US Census Bureau’s 2011–2015 American Community Survey’s (ACS) Public Use Microdata Series for California (with regional coding information from the University of Minnesota’s Integrated Public Use Microdata Series for California) to compare certain demographic characteristics of the survey sample—region, age, gender, race/ethnicity, and education—with the characteristics of California’s adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the ACS figures. To estimate landline and cell phone service in California, Abt Associates used 2015 state-level estimates released by the National Center for Health Statistics—which used data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) and the ACS—and 2016 estimates for the West Census Region in the latest NHIS report. The estimates for California were then compared against landline and cell phone service reported in this survey. We also used voter registration data from the California Secretary of State to compare the party registration of registered voters in our sample to party registration statewide. The landline and cell phone samples were then integrated using a frame integration weight, while sample balancing adjusted for differences across regional, age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, telephone service, and party registration groups. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 21 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY MAY 2017 The sampling error, taking design effects from weighting into consideration, is ±3.2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level for the total unweighted sample of 1,707 adults. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 3.2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for unweighted subgroups is larger: for the 1,382 registered voters, the sampling error is ±3.6 percent; for the 1,019 likely voters, it is ±4.2 percent. Sampling error is only 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. We present results for five geographic regions, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population. “Central Valley” includes Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, and Yuba Counties. “San Francisco Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, “Inland Empire” refers to Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, and “Orange/San Diego” refers to Orange and San Diego Counties. Residents of other geographic areas are included in the results reported for all adults, registered voters, and likely voters, but sample sizes for these less populous areas are not large enough to report separately. We present specific results for non-Hispanic whites, who account for 43 percent of the state’s adult population, and also for Latinos, who account for about a third of the state’s adult population and constitute one of the fastest-growing voter groups. We also present results for non-Hispanic Asian Americans, who make up about 15 percent of the state’s adult population, and non-Hispanic African Americans, who comprise about 6 percent. Results for other racial/ethnic groups—such as Native Americans—are included in the results reported for all adults, registered voters, and likely voters, but sample sizes are not large enough for separate analysis. We compare the opinions of those who report they are registered Democrats, registered Republicans, and decline-to-state or independent voters; the results for those who say they are registered to vote in other parties are not large enough for separate analysis. We also analyze the responses of likely voters—so designated per their responses to survey questions about voter registration, previous election participation, and current interest in politics. The percentages presented in the report tables and in the questionnaire may not add to 100 due to rounding. We compare current PPIC Statewide Survey results to those in our earlier surveys and to those in national surveys by CBS News, Gallup, the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Pew Research Center, and the Washington Post/ABC News. Additional details about our methodology can be found at www.ppic.org/content/other/SurveyMethodology.pdf and are available upon request through surveys@ppic.org. PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 22 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Questionnaire and Results MAY 2017 CALIFORNIANS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT May 12–22, 2017 1,707 California Adult Residents: English, Spanish MARGIN OF ERROR ±3.2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE PERCENTAGES MAY NOT ADD TO 100 DUE TO ROUNDING First, thinking about the state as a whole, what do you think is the most important issue facing people in California today? [code, don’t read] 22% 11 8 6 6 6 6 5 5 5 4 3 2 6 5 jobs, economy immigration, illegal immigration government in general, problems with elected officials, parties health care, health insurance housing costs, availability state budget, deficit, taxes water, drought crime, gangs, drugs education, schools, teachers environment, pollution, global warming infrastructure homelessness race relations, racial and ethnic issues other (specify) don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Jerry Brown is handling his job as governor of California? 52% 32 16 approve disapprove don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California Legislature is handling its job? 46% 38 15 approve disapprove don’t know Now thinking about your own personal finances… How would you rate your own personal financial situation? Would you say you are in excellent shape, good shape, only fair shape, or poor shape financially? 7% 33 40 19 – excellent good only fair poor don’t know Does the cost of your housing place a financial strain on you and your family today? (if yes, ask: “Is that a lot of financial strain or only a little?”) 47% 52 1 yes 27 yes, a lot 18 yes, a little 2 yes, don’t know how much no don’t know Next, Do you think the state budget situation in California—that is, the balance between government spending and revenues—is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today? 43% 37 13 7 big problem somewhat of a problem not a problem don’t know [question 7 not asked] PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 23 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Governor Brown recently released a revised budget plan of about $124 billion in the General Fund for the next fiscal year, which will increase overall spending by about 1 percent, including $2.8 billion increased spending on K–12 education, about $1.8 billion for the state’s rainy day fund, and no new taxes. In general, do you favor or oppose the governor’s budget plan? 63% 26 5 6 favor oppose haven’t heard anything about the budget (volunteered) don’t know [question 9 not asked] Next, How much of a problem is housing affordability in your part of California? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 59% 28 12 1 big problem somewhat of a problem not a problem don’t know If the state ballot had a bond measure to pay for affordable housing projects, would you vote yes or no? 70% 24 6 yes no don’t know Do you favor or oppose changing California’s environmental regulations and local permitting process as a way to make housing more affordable in your part of California? 61% 28 11 favor oppose don’t know MAY 2017 On another topic, How big a problem is poverty in your part of California? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not much of a problem? 39% 40 20 2 big problem somewhat of a problem not much of a problem don’t know Do you think the gap between the rich and the poor in your part of California is getting larger, getting smaller, or has it stayed the same? 61% 2 33 4 getting larger getting smaller stayed the same don’t know Should the state government do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor in California, or is this something the state government should not be doing? 61% 32 7 should do more should not be doing don’t know Next, Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Donald Trump is handling his job as president? 27% 67 6 approve disapprove don’t know Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way the US Congress is handling its job? 26% 66 8 approve disapprove don’t know Do you think things in the United States are going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 29% 65 6 right direction wrong direction don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 24 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months the United States will have good times financially or bad times? 39% 50 11 good times bad times don’t know Changing topics, As you may know, a health reform bill was signed into law in 2010. Given what you know about the health reform law, do you have a [rotate] (1) [generally favorable] [or] (2) [generally unfavorable] opinion of it? [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the health reform law refers to the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, please answer “yes”] [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the health reform law refers to the plan being discussed in Congress last week, please answer “no”] 48% 41 10 generally favorable generally unfavorable don’t know As you may know, the US House of Representatives recently passed a bill to replace the 2010 health reform law. Given what you know about the House bill, do you have a [rotate] (1) [generally favorable] [or] (2) [generally unfavorable] opinion of it? [Interviewer note: If respondent asks if the House bill refers to the American Health Care Act, or the Republicans’ and Donald Trump’s health care plan, please answer “yes”] 25% 57 19 generally favorable generally unfavorable don’t know MAY 2017 Do you favor or oppose having guaranteed health insurance coverage in which all Californians would get their insurance through a single state government health plan? (if favor, ask: “Do you favor it even if it means raising taxes?”) 65% 29 6 favor 42 favor, even if it means raising taxes 23 favor, not if it means raising taxes oppose don’t know Next, The California Legislature is considering a “sanctuary state” law that would limit assistance and cooperation between state and local government agencies and federal immigration enforcement, to the fullest extent possible consistent with federal and state law. Do you favor or oppose this proposal? 48% 42 10 favor oppose don’t know When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, do you think it will have [rotate 1 and 2] (1) a positive impact, (2) a negative impact, (3) or not much of an impact on businesses, jobs, and the economy in your part of California? 24% 49 21 6 positive impact negative impact not much of an impact don’t know When it comes to increased federal immigration enforcement, how much do you worry that someone that you know could be deported? Would you say that you worry a lot, some, not much, or not at all? 30% 21 15 32 1 a lot some not much not at all don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 25 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY On another topic, Given what you’ve heard or read, do you think the Russian government tried to influence the outcome of last fall’s US presidential election, or not? (if yes, ask: “Do you think some members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign intentionally helped Russian efforts to influence the election, or not?”) 58% 29 13 yes 47 yes, and Trump campaign intentionally helped 7 yes, but Trump campaign did not help 4 yes, don’t know if Trump campaign helped no don’t know Are you confident or not confident that Congress’s investigation of Russia’s role in the 2016 election will be conducted fairly? 38% 54 8 confident not confident don’t know Changing topics, In general, do you have confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to handle the situation with North Korea’s nuclear program, or are you uneasy about his approach? 28% 68 4 have confidence uneasy don’t know Do you think that Donald Trump has a clear plan for dealing with the situation in Syria, or don’t you think so? 21% 70 9 has a clear plan doesn’t have a clear plan don’t know [question 30 not asked] MAY 2017 On another topic, If you had to choose, would you rather have a smaller government providing fewer services, or a bigger government providing more services? 39% 54 7 smaller government, fewer services bigger government, more services don’t know In general, do you think laws covering the sale of guns should be made more strict, less strict, or kept as they are now? 60% 15 23 2 more strict less strict kept as they are now don’t know Next, Next, in general, do you think the use of marijuana should be legal, or not? 56% 41 3 yes, legal no, not legal don’t know As you may know, some states, including California, have decided to allow marijuana use, but it is still prohibited under federal law. Do you think the federal government should or should not enforce federal marijuana laws in these states? 38% 60 2 should should not don’t know Regardless of your views on legalizing marijuana in California, do you favor or oppose retail sales of recreational marijuana in your city or community? 48% 47 2 2 favor oppose it depends (volunteered) don’t know PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 26 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Next, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote in California? 70% yes [ask q36a] 30 no [skip to q37b] 36a. Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent? 44% 26 5 25 Democrat [ask q37] Republican [skip to q37a] another party (specify) [skip to q38] independent [skip to q37b] Would you call yourself a strong Democrat or not a very strong Democrat? 57% 40 3 strong not very strong don’t know [skip to q38] 37a. Would you call yourself a strong Republican or not a very strong Republican? 57% 42 1 strong not very strong don’t know [skip to q38] 37b. Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican Party or Democratic Party? 20% 46 26 8 Republican Party Democratic Party neither (volunteered) don’t know MAY 2017 Would you consider yourself to be politically: [read list, rotate order top to bottom] 12% 23 30 20 11 4 very liberal somewhat liberal middle-of-the-road somewhat conservative very conservative don’t know Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics? 27% 36 28 8 1 great deal fair amount only a little none don’t know [d1-d14 demographic questions] PPIC.ORG/SURVEY Californians and Their Government 27 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY ADVISORY COMMITTEE Ruben Barrales President and CEO GROW Elect Angela Glover Blackwell President and CEO PolicyLink Mollyann Brodie Senior Vice President Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Bill Lane Center for the American West Stanford University Jon Cohen Vice President of Survey Research SurveyMonkey Joshua J. Dyck Co-Director Center for Public Opinion University of Massachusetts, Lowell Russell Hancock President and CEO Joint Venture Silicon Valley Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Professor Sol Price School of Public Policy University of Southern California Robert Lapsley President California Business Roundtable Carol S. Larson President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Donna Lucas Chief Executive Officer Lucas Public Affairs Sonja Petek Fiscal and Policy Analyst California Legislative Analyst’s Office Lisa Pitney Vice President of Government Relations The Walt Disney Company Mindy Romero Founder and Director California Civic Engagement Project at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change Robert K. Ross, MD President and CEO The California Endowment Most Reverend Jaime Soto Bishop of Sacramento Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento Carol Whiteside Principal California Strategies The PPIC Statewide Survey Advisory Committee is a diverse group of experts who provide advice on survey issues. However, survey methods, questions, content, and timing are determined solely by PPIC. PPIC BOARD OF DIRECTORS Mas Masumoto, Chair Author and Farmer Mark Baldassare President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Ruben Barrales President and CEO GROW Elect María Blanco Executive Director Undocumented Student Legal Services Center University of California Office of the President Louise Henry Bryson Chair Emerita, Board of Trustees J. Paul Getty Trust A. Marisa Chun Partner McDermott Will & Emery LLP Chet Hewitt President and CEO Sierra Health Foundation Phil Isenberg Former Chair Delta Stewardship Council Donna Lucas Chief Executive Officer Lucas Public Affairs Steven A. Merksamer Senior Partner Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Gross & Leoni, LLP Gerald L. Parsky Chairman Aurora Capital Group Kim Polese Chairman ClearStreet, Inc. Gaddi H. Vasquez Senior Vice President, Government Affairs Edison International Southern California Edison Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 600 San Francisco, CA 94111 T: 415.291.4400 F: 415.291.4401 PPIC.ORG PPIC Sacramento Center Senator Office Building 1121 L Street, Suite 801 Sacramento, CA 95814 T: 916.440.1120 F: 916.440.1121" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-07-03 21:09:37" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(8) "s_517mbs" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-07-03 14:09:37" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-07-03 21:09:37" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["guid"]=> string(51) "http://www.ppic.org/wp-content/uploads/s_517mbs.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) }