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object(Timber\Post)#3742 (44) { ["ImageClass"]=> string(12) "Timber\Image" ["PostClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Post" ["TermClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Term" ["object_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["custom"]=> array(5) { ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(12) "S_105MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(7) "1282128" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(93370) "PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY JANUARY 2005 Public Policy Institute of California Special Survey on the California State Budget in collaboration with The James Irvine Foundation ○○○○○ Mark Baldassare Research Director & Survey Director The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) is a private operating foundation established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC’s research agenda focuses on three program areas: population, economy, and governance and public finance. Studies within these programs are examining the underlying forces shaping California’s future, cutting across a wide range of public policy concerns, including education, health care, immigration, income distribution, welfare, urban growth, and state and local finance. PPIC was created because three concerned citizens – William R. Hewlett, Roger W. Heyns, and Arjay Miller – recognized the need for linking objective research to the realities of California public policy. Their goal was to help the state’s leaders better understand the intricacies and implications of contemporary issues and make informed public policy decisions when confronted with challenges in the future. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. David W. Lyon is founding President and Chief Executive Officer of PPIC. Cheryl White Mason is Chair of the Board of Directors. Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 • San Francisco, California 94111 Telephone: (415) 291-4400 • Fax: (415) 291-4401 info@ppic.org • www.ppic.org Preface The PPIC Statewide Survey series provides policymakers, the media, and the general public with objective, advocacy-free information on the perceptions, opinions, and public policy preferences of California residents. Inaugurated in April 1998, the survey series has generated a database that includes the responses of more than 110,000 Californians. The current survey is the fourth in a series of special surveys on the California State Budget and Fiscal System, begun in June 2003 and conducted in collaboration with The James Irvine Foundation. At the same time that the state government faces the immediate challenge of addressing the current budget gap between state spending and state revenue, an array of structural reforms of the state and local finance system is being considered to cope with long-term issues involved in balancing the state budget. Public opinion surveys offer the state’s lawmakers an opportunity to consider the views of Californians on various fiscal proposals and their specific perceptions on spending and taxes. Over the years, California voters have made fiscal decisions through the initiative process—for example, Proposition 13 property tax reform, Proposition 98 state funding guarantees for K-12 public schools, Proposition 1A protection of local government revenues, and Proposition 57 state bonds to reduce the state’s budget shortfall—and the state’s residents will continue to have an important impact on the state and local fiscal system through the ballot box. This survey series seeks to raise public awareness, inform decisionmakers, and stimulate public discussions about the current state budget and the underlying state and local finance system. This report presents the responses of 2,002 adult residents throughout the state on a wide range of issues: • California state budget issues, including perceived severity of the state budget gap, preferred fiscal approach to the state’s budget gap, priorities for state spending, support for tax increases, perceptions of the state’s fiscal policymaking process, attitudes toward the governor’s State of the State address and related policy proposals, and overall satisfaction with the governor’s budget plan, support for his fiscal approach, and concerns about proposed spending reductions. • State issues, including the public’s perceptions of the most important problem in California, general direction of the state and outlook for the state’s economy, trust in state government officials, overall approval ratings of Governor Schwarzenegger and the state legislature, and approval ratings for the governor on specific issues. In addition, this survey considers attitudes toward a proposed special election and fiscal, political, and pension reforms. • National issues, including general direction of the nation and outlook for the national economy, trust in the federal government, overall approval ratings for President Bush and approval ratings for the president on specific issues, perceptions of Bush’s second term in the presidency, and attitudes regarding the federal budget and taxes, the Social Security system and proposed reforms, and the situation in Iraq. • The extent to which Californians may differ with regard to attitudes toward spending and taxes by party affiliation, demographics, race/ethnicity, and region of residence. This is the 53rd PPIC Statewide Survey, which has included a number of special editions on the Central Valley (11/99, 3/01, 4/02, 4/03, 4/04), Los Angeles County (3/03, 3/04), Orange County (9/01, 12/02, 12/03, 12/04), San Diego County (7/02), population growth (5/01), land use (11/01, 11/02), housing (11/04), the environment (6/00, 6/02, 7/03, 11/03, 7/04), the California state budget (6/03, 1/04, 5/04), and California’s future (8/04). Copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). Copies of this and earlier reports are posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). For questions about the survey, please contact survey@ppic.org. -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release California State Budget State Policy Issues National Political Context Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 7 13 19 21 27 - iii - Press Release Para ver este comunicado de prensa en español, por favor visite nuestra página de internet: http://www.ppic.org/main/pressreleaseindex.asp AS THE NATION GOES, SO GOES CALIFORNIA? PARTISANSHIP RETURNS WITH A VENGEANCE Big Concern About State Budget, Little Consensus About Solutions; Most Residents Pessimistic About Iraq Election SAN FRANCISCO, California, January 27, 2005 — The bipartisan support that characterized Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first year in office shows signs of cracking under the strain of a lingering budget crisis and renewed concern about the quality of public education, according to a new survey released by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) and The James Irvine Foundation. While overall support for the governor remains high – 60 percent of Californians say they approve of his performance – the percentage of Democrats and independents who disapprove of the job he is doing has grown substantially from one year ago. Democrats are now more likely to disapprove (49%) than approve (43%) of the governor’s job performance, a marked shift from one year ago (46% approve, 27% disapprove). While six in 10 independents still give the governor positive marks overall – the same as a year ago – his disapproval ratings among this group have nearly doubled (from 18% to 32%). When it comes to the three major issues that Californians want the state’s elected officials to tackle this year, support for the governor proves more elusive. Education (22%) has resurfaced as the top policy concern among Californians (up from 15% one year ago), followed by the state budget (20%), and the economy and jobs (15%). Currently, a majority of state residents disapprove of Governor Schwarzenegger’s performance with regard to schools (34% approve, 51% disapprove). And while a majority (56%) support his handling of economic issues, his approval ratings in handling the state budget have declined in the past year, falling from 54 percent to 48 percent. Driving the disappointing numbers on education and the state budget is a sharp partisan split: While Republicans remain supportive of the governor’s policies, Democrats and independents are far less charitable. Seventy-two percent of Democrats and 54 percent of independents disapprove of his handling of education issues. “Californians like Governor Schwarzenegger, but they no longer view him as being above the political fray,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. “This is problematic because politics-asusual is not an option for the governor – his plan to take a bold reform agenda to the people this year still requires broad bipartisan support.” In Us We Trust: Californians Want to Set Budget Priorities While education has claimed top billing, state budget issues weigh heavily on weary state residents. As in January 2004, the vast majority of Californians (70%) – and 76 percent of likely voters – view the multibillion dollar gap between revenues and spending as a big problem. Now, however, they do not endorse the governor’s budget: 38 percent of residents say they are satisfied and 55 percent say they are unsatisfied with his proposal. Last year, 57 percent were satisfied and 30 percent were unsatisfied with Schwarzenegger’s plan. Who do Californians want to make the tough choices involved in the current state budget? Thirty-five percent favor Democrats in the legislature, 29 percent prefer Governor Schwarzenegger, and 18 percent prefer Republicans in the legislature. A year ago, the governor was preferred over Democrats in the legislature by 33 percent to 27 percent. The increased support for the legislature on this dimension is notable, given that their dismal approval ratings (37%) remain virtually unchanged from one year ago. Ultimately, state residents trust themselves to make the call: 68 percent believe voters should make decisions about the budget process rather than abdicate that responsibility to the governor and legislature (27%). -v- Press Release Taxes or Spending Cuts? Yes, But … The governor’s proposed budget included a variety of spending reductions but no new taxes. Where does the public stand? Forty percent favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases, 34 percent favor mostly spending cuts, and only 11 percent prefer mostly tax increases. Although 45 percent of Californians oppose new taxes, 49 percent think tax increases should have been included in the budget plan – a seven-point increase over a year ago that reflects growing support for taxes among Democrats and independents. So who should pay to help get the state out of its current financial hole? Someone else. As in past PPIC surveys, a majority of Californians support raising the tax rate on the state’s top income bracket (69% favor, 28% oppose) and increasing cigarette and alcohol taxes (74% favor, 25% oppose). However, they steadfastly oppose increasing the state portion of the sales tax (64% oppose, 32% favor). Residents are also not willing to bite the bullet when it comes to cuts in spending. Most Californians (73%) express concern about the effects of budget cuts in the governor’s plan. And most are also opposed to spending cuts in the major programs that dominate the state budget. Rather than cutting program funding, majorities support spending more or the same amount on K-12 education (62% more, 27% same amount), health and human services (47% more, 33% same amount), and colleges and universities (44% more, 37% same amount). Support for spending cuts (46%) is apparent in only one area — prisons and corrections. Political Reform a Mixed Bag for State Residents While Governor Schwarzenegger’s State of the State address was moderately well received (42% favorable, 32% unfavorable), his request that the legislature go into special session clearly resonated with state residents: 67 percent say they approve of this plan. Residents are also supportive of the governor’s call for reorganizing state agencies and eliminating unnecessary boards and commissions, with most saying these reforms would help a lot (25%) or somewhat (47%) with the state’s fiscal situation. The governor’s suggestion that he might call a special election in 2005 to allow voters to decide on a package of reforms receives a far more mixed response. Half of state residents (50%) and likely voters (52%) say it would be better to wait until the next scheduled election in June 2006. When residents are told the estimated price tag for a special election – $50 million to $70 million – support drops to 20 percent. Californians are also mixed in their responses to the specific set of reforms being proposed for the special ballot: • Redistricting Reform – 44 percent support legislative redistricting reform. A majority of Republicans (56%) support such a reform, while a majority of Democrats (53%) oppose it. • Fiscal Reform – 59 percent support limiting state spending to what is raised in revenues in a given year. • Pension Reform – 61 percent support changing the pension system for new public employees from defined benefits to defined contributions. However, only three in 10 residents view the pension and retirement system as a big problem for state and local government budgets. Partisan Differences Abound Over Social Security, Taxes, Iraq As President George W. Bush begins his second term in office, Californians are resigned to a national schism: 60 percent believe the county will be divided under his leadership, while 35 percent say the nation will unite. In January 2001, 50 percent expected a nation divided while 44 percent were betting on unity. Demonstrating the overall lack of consensus are Californians’ views of the president’s capabilities as a leader as well as his overall job approval ratings: 51 percent agree that the president will be a strong and capable leader in his second term and 45 percent disagree, while 52 percent disapprove of the way he is handling his duties and 46 percent approve. Attitudes about important national issues also reflect the charged partisan atmosphere. Californians are divided about the Bush administration’s plan to allow people to invest their Social Security contributions in the stock market – 49 percent support such a plan and 46 percent oppose it. If such a program existed, 36 percent of state residents say they would invest in the market while 60 percent would not. A rare point of agreement? Few state residents (29%) – Democrats (26%) and Republicans (30%) – buy the hype that the program is in crisis. But 42 percent do believe that Social Security has major problems. - vi - Press Release Similar to their view of retirement programs, few Californians (29%) are inclined to believe that the federal budget deficit is a crisis rather than a major problem (50%). However, the consensus ends there: Exactly half of state residents oppose making the 2001 temporary tax cuts permanent, while 37 percent support the notion. Sixty percent of Republicans support a permanent cut, while 66 percent of Democrats oppose it. On a related note, a majority of residents (53%) disapprove of the way the president – who supports permanent cuts – is handling the federal budget and taxes. A large majority of Californians (63%) are also critical of the way President Bush is handling the situation in Iraq, and only 30 percent say things are going very (5%) or somewhat (25%) well there. As a further sign of pessimism, only three in 10 have at least some confidence that the upcoming Iraqi elections will produce a stable and effective government. While Republicans are more likely to express confidence in the election process (51%), only 14 percent of Democrats hold out such hope. More Key Findings • Fairy Wings? (page 9) Governor Schwarzenegger receives poor ratings on another State of the State topic – transportation. Currently, 35 percent approve and 37 percent disapprove of his handling of this issue. The governor receives less than majority support from Republicans, Democrats, and independents on this subject. • State: Right Track – Nation: Wrong Track (pages 13, 21) More state residents than not believe the state is currently headed in the right direction (46% right direction, 41% wrong direction) and see good economic times ahead (47% good times, 39% bad times). However, a majority (51%) think the nation is headed in the wrong direction. They are somewhat more optimistic about national economic conditions (48% good times, 43% bad times). • Distrust of Government (pages 24, 25) Only one in three Californians say they can trust the state or federal governments to do what is right just about always (5% state government, 6% federal government) or most of the time (25% state government, 26% federal government). About the Survey The California State Budget and Fiscal System Survey — a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and The James Irvine Foundation — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the fourth in a series intended to raise public awareness, inform decisionmakers, and stimulate public discussions about the current budget and the underlying state and local finance systems. Findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,002 California adult residents interviewed between January 11 and January 18, 2005. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. For more information on methodology, see page 19. Mark Baldassare is research director at PPIC, where he holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has directed since 1998. His recent book, A California State of Mind: The Conflicted Voter in a Changing World, is available at www.ppic.org. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public policy through objective, nonpartisan research on the economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. This report will be posted on PPIC’s website (www.ppic.org) on January 27. ### - vii - Percent Saying State Budget Gap Is a Big Problem 43 23 70 Legislative Redistricting Reform Measure 14 46 40 Percent all adults Big problem Somew hat of a problem Not a problem Don't know Percent Most Important Problem for Governor and Legislature to Work on in 2005 25 22 20 20 15 15 10 5 0 Education Budget Economy and Jobs Country Will Be United Under President Bush 5 35 60 Percent all adults Able to unite Divided Don't know Percent Percent likely voters Yes No Don't know Governor's Approval Ratings 70 60 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Overall 34 Education 56 48 Budget Economy and Jobs Percent Support for Investing Social Security Money in Stock Market 70 65 60 49 50 51 40 36 30 20 10 0 All adults Dem Rep Ind Percent California State Budget Approaching the Budget Gap Californians are as concerned today as they were a year ago about the state’s budget. After Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger released his budget plan on January 10th, a large majority of adult residents (70%) and likely voters (76%) said they saw the gap between spending and revenues as a big problem for the people of California. An identical 70 percent of residents saw the budget gap as a big problem in January 2004. Public concern about the state’s budget gap is high across all regions and political and demographic groups. Democrats (77%) and independents (71%) are more likely than Republicans (66%), whites (74%) are more likely than Latinos (61%), and San Francisco Bay Area residents (75%) are more likely than people in other regions to think the budget gap is a big problem. Concern also increases with age, education, income, and homeownership. “The state government has an annual budget of around $110 billion and currently faces a multibillion dollar gap between state spending and state revenue. Do you think that this budget gap is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today?” Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 70% 23 4 3 Central Valley 69% 23 5 3 Region SF Bay Area 75% 19 2 4 Los Angeles 68% 24 5 3 Other Southern California 67% 25 4 4 Likely Voters 76% 20 3 1 Given the concern, what do Californians want their state government to do about the budget gap? Forty percent favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases; 34 percent favor mostly spending cuts. Only a few are in favor of mostly tax increases (11%) or think it is okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit (6%). A year ago, support for a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases was higher (50%). The decline reflects growing support since then for mostly spending cuts (28% to 34%) and mostly tax increases (7% to 11%). Currently, 54 percent of Democrats prefer to deal with the budget gap through a mix of spending cuts and tax increases, while 41 percent of independents favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases, and 55 percent of Republicans prefer mostly spending cuts. “How would you prefer to deal with the state’s budget gap …” Mixture of spending cuts and tax increases Mostly through spending cuts Mostly through tax increases Okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit Don't know / Other answer All Adults 40% 34 11 6 9 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 54% 28% 41% 20 55 34 16 5 12 455 678 Likely Voters 43% 37 11 3 6 -1- California State Budget State Spending Priorities In light of their preference for spending cuts, where are Californians most willing to see the state spend less money? Support for spending cuts falls short of a majority in all four of the program areas that account for most of the spending in the state budget. In terms of priorities for increased spending, education tops the list. Californians’ fiscal priorities now are similar to those reported two years ago. About six in 10 adults and likely voters think that the state should spend more money for K-12 public schools. Democrats (72%) and independents (62%) are more likely than Republicans (43%) to favor increased spending. Majorities with children (69%) and without children (56%) favor spending more on schools. Public support for more school spending declines with age, income, and education. Forty-seven percent of residents and 40 percent of likely voters think the state should spend more on health and human services. Few adults and voters would prefer less spending in this area, but there are political differences about spending more: Democrats (58%) and independents (42%) are much more likely than Republicans (24%) to favor increased spending on health and human services. There is less than majority support for increased spending on public colleges and universities among all residents (44%) and likely voters (39%). Again, Democrats (52%) and independents (40%) are much more likely than Republicans (27%) to favor spending more, but few residents support less spending on higher education. Corrections is the only area in which about half of California adults (46%) and likely voters (50%) think the state should spend less money. Across party lines, few residents support more spending on the state’s correction system. “Given the budget gap, do you think the state should spend more money than it does now, the same amount as now, or less money than now on ..." K-12 public education Health and human services Public colleges and universities State’s corrections system More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know All Adults 62% 27 10 1 47 33 17 3 44 37 16 3 13 36 46 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 72% 43% 62% 22 36 29 6 18 6 033 58 24 42 30 40 39 9 34 17 322 52 27 40 35 45 41 11 25 16 233 12 12 11 35 39 37 48 46 47 535 Likely Voters 56% 29 13 2 40 36 22 2 39 39 19 3 11 35 50 4 -2- California State Budget State Tax Preferences Californians have definite ideas about the kinds of tax increases they would accept for reducing the budget gap. Although they oppose tax increases aimed at the general public, many support increases aimed at specific groups. Seventy-four percent favor increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcohol, and 69 percent support raising the top rate on the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians. In contrast, 64 percent oppose raising the state sales tax. These tax preferences are similar to those we found a year ago. Today, as in January 2004, only one of the three increases is favored across political groups: 79 percent of Democrats, 76 percent of independents, and 65 percent of Republicans support increasing cigarette and alcohol taxes. In contrast, 84 percent of Democrats, 73 percent of independents, but only 45 percent of Republicans favor raising taxes of the wealthiest Californians. Majorities across political groups and regions of the state oppose raising the state portion of the sales tax. “Do you favor or oppose …” Increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcoholic beverages? Favor Oppose Don't know Raising the top rate of the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians? Favor Oppose Don't know Raising the state portion of the sales tax? Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 74% 25 1 69 28 3 32 64 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 79% 20 1 65% 34 1 76% 24 0 84 45 73 14 52 25 232 38 27 33 58 71 62 425 Likely Voters 72% 27 1 65 32 3 35 62 3 Californians are closely divided when asked if they prefer a smaller state government with lower taxes and fewer services (44%) or a larger state government with higher taxes and more services (49%). A year ago, 48 percent favored lower taxes with fewer services while 43 percent favored higher taxes. The differences across political groups on this issue are large today: Democrats (59%) prefer to pay higher taxes for a larger state government with more services, Republicans (71%) would rather have lower taxes and a smaller state government with fewer services, and independents are divided. Likely voters tend to favor lower taxes and a smaller government with fewer services (50% to 41%). Whites (38%) are much less likely than Latinos (70%) to prefer the higher tax option. Support for paying higher taxes for a larger government with more services declines sharply with age, education, income, and homeownership. “Which statement do you agree with more: I’d rather pay higher taxes to support a larger state government that provides more services, or lower taxes and have a smaller state government that provides fewer services?” Higher taxes, more services Lower taxes, fewer services Don't know All Adults 49% 44 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 59% 31 24% 71 49% 43 10 5 8 Likely Voters 41% 50 9 - 3 - January 2005 California State Budget Fiscal Policymaking Process Whose approach to budget choices do Californians prefer? Thirty-five percent prefer the Democrats’ choice, 29 percent prefer Governor Schwarzenegger’s, and 18 percent prefer the Republicans’. A year ago, Governor Schwarzenegger got the nod over Democrats in the legislature by 33 percent to 27 percent, and 17 percent preferred the Republicans’ approach. Across party lines, Democrats now choose Democratic legislators by a wider margin than a year ago (50%, January 2004; 66%, January 2005). However, Republicans favor Governor Schwarzenegger by about the same margin (50%, January 2004; 46%, January 2005). About one in three independents continue to pick Governor Schwarzenegger’s approach to the budget as their favorite, and three in 10 still name the legislative Democrats. The Democratic legislators’ approach is most preferred by San Francisco Bay Area residents and by those who want to have a larger government with more services and higher taxes. Public support for Governor Schwarzenegger’s approach to the state budget is higher among whites than Latinos, homeowners than renters, and upper-income than lower-income residents. “When it comes to the tough choices involved in the current state budget, both in deciding how much Californians should pay in taxes and how to fund state programs, whose approach do you most prefer …” Governor Schwarzenegger's Democrats’ in the legislature Republicans’ in the legislature Other answer Don't know All Adults 29% 35 18 4 14 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 17% 66 5 4 8 46% 6 36 2 10 35% 29 13 7 16 Likely Voters 31% 37 18 5 9 However, Californians strongly prefer to have the state’s voters make decisions about reforming the budget process—a trend that we also noted a year ago. Two in three adults (68%) and likely voters (64%) would rather have the voters decide at the ballot box how to change the way that the state taxes and spends money. Only three in 10 would prefer that the governor and the legislature make these fiscal decisions by passing new laws. On this issue, there is no partisan divide. Solid majorities across regions and racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups prefer a vote at the ballot box to reform the budget process. “When it comes to long-term issues of reforming the state budget process, both in terms of changing the way the state taxes and the state spends money, which approach do you most prefer ...?” California voters should decide at the ballot box Governor and legislature should pass new laws Other answer Don't know All Adults 68% 27 2 3 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 69% 68% 66% 27 27 28 221 235 Likely Voters 64% 31 2 3 -4- California State Budget State of the State Address Governor Schwarzenegger’s second ”state of the state” speech, delivered on January 5th, was fairly well received. Overall, 42 percent of Californians had a favorable impression of the governor’s plans and policies, while 32 percent had an unfavorable impression. Eighteen percent had not heard about the speech and 8 percent had no opinion. A year ago, a similar proportion were favorably impressed (44%) or had no opinion (8%), but fewer were unfavorably impressed (18%), and more had not heard about his speech (30%). Among likely voters, 52 percent were favorably impressed and 33 percent were unfavorably impressed. Across parties, 68 percent of Republicans and 44 percent of independents were favorably impressed, but nearly half of Democrats had an unfavorable reaction (47%). “Overall, do you have a favorable or an unfavorable impression of the plans and policies for California that Governor Schwarzenegger presented in his ‘state of the state’ speech?” Favorable Unfavorable Haven't heard about the speech (volunteered) Don't know All Adults 42% 32 18 8 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 28% 47 68% 11 44% 33 16 17 15 948 Likely Voters 52% 33 10 5 One popular message in the State of the State address was the governor’s announcement that he was calling the state legislature into a special session to pass new laws on finance, education, pensions, and redistricting reform. Solid majorities of all adults (67%) and likely voters (69%) say they approve of this plan. Consensus is high across all regions in the state, political parties, and racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Approval is significantly higher among those who believe California is going in the right direction (80%) than among those who believe the state is going in the wrong direction (55%). “Do you approve or disapprove of the governor’s plan to call a special session of the state legislature to pass new laws on finance, education, pension, and redistricting reforms?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 67% 21 12 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 55% 33 12 80% 10 10 73% 18 9 Likely Voters 69% 22 9 Governor Schwarzenegger also mentioned recommendations of the California Performance Review that he would like to see implemented this year. Specifically, he called for reorganizing state agencies and eliminating unnecessary boards and commissions. Most Californians think that these reforms would help a lot (25%) or somewhat (47%) with the state’s fiscal situation. However, Republicans (40%) are much more likely than Democrats (17%) and independents (24%) to say these reforms would help a lot. - 5 - January 2005 California State Budget Governor’s Budget Proposal On January 10th, Governor Schwarzenegger released a budget plan for the 2005-2006 fiscal year that emphasizes curbing state spending to help reduce the budget gap. The plan includes withholding money from K-12 public education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of the gasoline sales tax away from transportation projects, and borrowing with state bonds. As was true last year, the governor’s budget plan has no new taxes. Overall, 55 percent of adults and 54 percent of likely voters were dissatisfied with this budget plan and about four in 10 were satisfied. This contrasts with January 2004, when 57 percent of adults were satisfied and 30 percent were dissatisfied with the budget plan. Dissatisfaction with the budget plan is higher now than a year ago among Democrats (74% to 42%) and independents (54% to 17%) and even among Republicans (32% to 10%). Concerning taxes, 45 percent of Californians said there shouldn’t be any new taxes, but 49 percent think tax increases should have been included in the budget plan—a 7-point increase over a year ago. The proportion favoring new taxes increased among Democrats (58% to 65%) and independents (32% to 57%) but not Republicans (31% to 28%). Today, three in four residents are very concerned (31%) or somewhat concerned (42%) about the effects of the spending cuts in the governor’s plan, reflecting a higher level of concern than a year ago (26% very concerned, 42% somewhat concerned). “The governor recently proposed a budget that includes withholding money from education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of gasoline sales tax, and using state bonds. In general, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with this budget plan?” Satisfied Dissatisfied Don't know All Adults 38% 55 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 21% 62% 38% 74 32 54 568 Likely Voters 40% 54 6 “Do you think that tax increases should have been included in the budget plan?” Yes, should have No, should not have Don't know All Adults 49% 45 6 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 65% 31 4 28% 68 4 57% 38 5 Likely Voters 49% 48 3 “How concerned are you about the effects of the spending cuts in the budget plan?” Very concerned Somewhat concerned Not too concerned Not at all concerned Don't know All Adults 31% 42 15 10 2 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 45% 43 8 3 1 18% 38 27 16 1 29% 43 16 10 2 Likely Voters 34% 39 16 10 1 -6- State Policy Issues Most Important Problem in 2005 When Californians are asked to name the one issue that is most important for the governor and legislature to work on this year, their top three concerns are schools and education (22%), the state budget (20%), and jobs and the economy (15%). Fewer than one in 10 name any other issue, including immigration, health care, crime and gangs, driver’s licenses, transportation, and the environment. The most significant change in our past three surveys is the increasing percentage of residents who mention schools (11% in February 2003; 15% in January 2004; 22% in January 2005) and the declining percentage who mention the economy (28% in February 2003; 21% in January 2004; 15% in January 2005) as the most important issue for the governor and legislature to work on. Compared to a year ago, the public’s consideration of the state budget as a top policy priority has sharply declined (31% to 20%) Indeed, the mention of schools and education as the most important issue is at its highest point since January 2002. Schools are the top issue in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, while a slightly higher percentage of residents elsewhere name the state budget as the top issue. Latinos mention education ahead of all other issues; however, Latinos (8%) are more inclined than whites (0%) to name driver’s licenses as their top issue, while whites (26%) are more likely than Latinos (8%) to name the state budget. The ranking of issues by likely voters is similar to all adults. However, there are differences across political groups. Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to mention education as the top priority (29% to 15%). In contrast, Republicans and independents name the state budget as their most important concern (26% in both cases). Education is a top priority for those under the age of 55 and those with children in their homes. Upper-income, college-educated residents, and those age 55 and older name the state budget as their top priority. “Which one issue facing California today do you think is the most important for the governor and state legislature to work on in 2005?” Region Central All Adults Valley SF Bay Area Education, schools 22% 20% 31% State budget, deficit, taxes 20 22 20 Economy, jobs, unemployment 15 17 18 Immigration, illegal immigration 8 6 5 Health care/costs, HMO reform 5 6 4 Crime, gangs 211 Driver’s licenses 221 Other* 17 14 13 Don't know 9 12 7 *No single issue was mentioned by more than 2 percent of respondents. Los Angeles 23% 15 14 11 6 3 2 16 10 Other Southern California 16% 22 12 11 5 2 2 20 10 Latinos 22% 9 14 9 5 4 8 15 14 -7- State Policy Issues Job Performance Ratings for State Officials While 37 percent approve of the overall job the state legislature is doing today, 50 percent of Californians are not happy with the legislators’ performance. This represents a decline from the 43 percent approval rating given to the legislature in October 2004, although similar to a year ago in January 2004 (36%). Today’s approval ratings are, however, higher than in August 2003, when our survey showed an historic low of 28 percent of Californians approving of the way the legislature was handling its job. Among likely voters, 57 percent disapprove of the legislature’s performance, and a majority across all political groups also disapprove of the way that the lawmakers are handling their responsibilities. Latinos (49% approve, 38% disapprove) give higher ratings than whites (32% approve, 54% disapprove). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California legislature is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 37% 50 13 Party Registration Dem 36% 51 13 Rep 35% 56 9 Central Ind Valley 39% 52 38% 51 9 11 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 30% 56 40% 47 38% 49 14 13 13 Likely Voters 33% 57 10 In the wake of Governor Schwarzenegger’s highly publicized “state of the state” address and budget plan for the next fiscal year, six in 10 Californians approve of the way he is handling his job, while one in three disapprove. Among likely voters, a similar 63 percent approve and 32 percent disapprove. The governor’s approval rating among all Californians is virtually the same as his rating in January (59%) and October (61%) 2004. However, compared to a year ago, the percentage of Californians expressing disapproval is higher (22% then, 33% today), with fewer Californians expressing no opinion (19% then, 7% today). Republicans (88%) overwhelmingly approve of the governor’s job performance, just as they did a year ago. However, Democrats are now more likely to disapprove (49%) than approve (43%) of the way the governor is handling his job—a marked shift from his overall ratings among Democrats a year ago (46% approve, 27% disapprove, 27% don’t know). Six in 10 independents give the governor positive marks for his overall job performance—the same as a year ago—while disapproval ratings have increased since January 2004 (18% to 32%). We did find a significant racial/ethnic gap in Schwarzenegger’s approval ratings: Two in three whites (68%) compared to 47 percent of Latinos approve of his performance in office. While a majority of residents across all regions approve of the way the governor is handling state affairs, those who live in Other Southern California (68%) and the Central Valley (63%) give higher approval ratings than residents in Los Angeles (56%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (50%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Arnold Schwarzenegger is handling his job as governor of California?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 60% 33 7 Party Registration Dem 43% 49 8 Rep 88% 8 4 Ind 60% 32 8 Central Valley 63% 31 6 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 50% 56% 68% 42 38 25 86 7 Likely Voters 63% 32 5 -8- State Policy Issues Governor’s Report Card When it comes to the top three issues that Californians want their state’s elected officials to tackle this year, the governor’s approval ratings fall short of his overall job approval rating of 60 percent. A majority disapprove of his performance when it comes to schools, with just one in three approving of the way he is handling school issues. As for the state budget and taxes, the percentage who say they approve of the job he is doing falls just short of a majority, with four in 10 saying they aren’t happy with the way he is handling the situation. However, when it comes to jobs and the economy, a solid majority (56%) approve of the governor’s performance, with just one in three expressing dissatisfaction. The governor’s approval ratings on handling the state budget and taxes have declined in the past year (54% in January 2004, 55% in May 2004, 58% in August 2004, 48% in January 2005), while his disapproval ratings have climbed sharply from one year ago (26% to 41%). We do not have time trends available at this time for schools, the economy, government reform, or traffic and transportation. The governor receives high marks for his government reform efforts (58% approve, 30% disapprove). When asked about traffic congestion and transportation—in light of the high percentage of residents in our recent surveys who say this issue is a big problem in their part of California—the governor’s ratings are decidedly mixed (35% approve, 37% disapprove, 28% don’t know). San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents give the governor lower approval ratings than residents in the Central Valley and Other Southern California across these five domains. We also found sharply lower approval ratings among Democrats than Republicans. Latinos give lower approval ratings than whites when it comes to jobs and the economy, the state budget and taxes, and government reform. "Do you approve or disapprove of the way Governor Schwarzenegger is handling …" Reforming California government? Jobs and the economy? The state budget and taxes? Transportation and traffic congestion? The state’s K-12 public education system? Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 58% 30 12 56 32 12 48 41 11 35 37 28 34 51 15 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 40% 84% 65% 48 8 26 12 8 9 43 81 59 44 11 30 13 8 11 29 77 49 62 14 44 997 25 48 30 49 22 37 26 30 33 18 54 32 72 29 54 10 17 14 Latinos 50% 40 10 47 42 11 42 48 10 42 40 18 40 48 12 - 9 - January 2005 State Policy Issues Special Election and Political Reforms Governor Schwarzenegger’s recent suggestion that he might call a special election later in 2005 to allow voters to decide on a package of reforms receives a mixed response. About half of adults and likely voters think it would be better to wait until the next scheduled election in June 2006 to vote on reforms, while slightly fewer prefer to have a special election. A majority of Democrats are opposed to having a special election, while a majority of Republicans are in favor of it; independents are evenly divided. When voters are told the estimated price tag for a special election – $50 million to $70 million –about half of those who initially favored the special election say they no longer do so. As a result, only 20 percent of adults and 24 percent of likely voters would still prefer to have a special election in spite of the cost. This proposal has limited support across political groups as well when the cost is understood (Democrats: 14%; Republicans: 31%; independents: 23%). Among those who approve of the governor’s performance in office, 27 percent would prefer to have a special election, given the estimated price tag. “Governor Schwarzenegger is considering calling a special election to vote on financial, educational, and governmental reforms. Do you think it is better to have a special election later this year or is it better to wait until the scheduled election of June 2006?” Special election Wait until 2006 Don't know All Adults 45% 50 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 34% 58% 47% 62 37 51 452 Likely Voters 44% 52 4 Among the proposals that Governor Schwarzenegger might place on a special election ballot is a political reform of the legislative redistricting process. His idea of taking the decisionmaking power on drawing political boundaries away from the governor and state legislature, and giving this authority to an independent panel of retired judges, does not garner majority support. The California electorate is deeply divided over this issue: A majority of Democrats are opposed, a majority of Republicans are in favor of it, and independent voters show a slight favor for the proposal, although support falls below a majority in this group. A majority of Californians who approve of the governor’s overall performance in office favor this reform (53% yes, 32% no). Support for changing the political redistricting process increases with education and income. This proposal to create an independent redistricting commission received a similar response in September 2004 among likely voters (44% yes, 38% no). “If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, how would you vote on a legislative redistricting reform measure that requires an independent panel of three retired judges, instead of the state legislature and governor, to adopt a new redistricting plan. Would you vote yes or no?” Yes No Don't know All Adults 44% 41 15 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 34% 53 56% 30 47% 41 13 14 12 Likely Voters 46% 40 14 - 10 - State Policy Issues Special Election and Fiscal Reforms Governor Schwarzenegger mentioned in his state of the state address that he would like to place two fiscal reforms on a special election ballot for voter approval. The general concepts of state spending limits and changes in the government pension system both have majority support at this time. Six in 10 of the state’s adult residents (59%) and likely voters (64%) say they would vote yes on a state ballot measure that would limit the amount that the state could spend each year to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across-the-board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Public support for this reform falls just under a majority among Democrats, but the proposal is strongly favored by Republicans and independents. The “yes” vote for spending limits increases with age, education, income, and homeownership and is higher among whites (64%) than Latinos (50%). A year ago, seven in 10 adults (70%) and likely voters (71%) said a strict limit on state spending was a good idea. Another proposal would change the government pension system from defined benefits to defined contributions – a plan similar to the 401(k) system offered by many private employers. Three in 10 residents think that the public employee pension and retirement systems are a big problem for state and local government budgets, while seven in ten residents say this is at least somewhat of a problem. Six in 10 adult residents (61%) and likely voters (64%) would vote in favor of changing the government pension systems from defined benefits to defined contributions. The general concept is favored by a majority of residents across the regions of the state and increases with income. The proposal receives considerably less support among Democrats (53%) than among Republicans (72%) and independents (66%). How are the public’s attitudes toward Schwarzenegger tied to support of these proposed changes? Seven in 10 of those who currently approve of the governor’s overall performance in office would vote yes on state spending limits (72%) and are in favor of the proposed government pension reform (69%). “If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, how would you vote on limiting the amount that the state could spend each year equal to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across-the-board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Would you vote yes or no?” Yes No Don't know All Adults 59% 32 9 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 49% 77% 65% 41 16 29 10 7 6 Likely Voters 64% 28 8 “Would you favor or oppose changing the pension system for new public employees from defined benefits to a defined contribution system similar to a 401(k) plan?” Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 61% 25 14 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 53% 72% 66% 34 19 22 13 9 12 Likely Voters 64% 26 10 - 11 - January 2005 State Policy Issues Supermajority Voting Reforms Californians are less supportive of fiscal reform measures that would make it easier to pass a state budget and raise local special taxes than they are of proposed fiscal reforms that would limit government spending and reform the government pension system. Currently, there are no efforts underway to place measures on the ballot that would lower the supermajority vote requirements for certain taxes; however, such changes have been proposed in the past as part of state and local fiscal reforms. California voters also rejected a lower threshold for passing a state budget in Proposition 56 last year (34% yes, 66% no). Forty-three percent of state residents think that replacing the two-thirds vote requirement with a 55 percent majority vote to raise local special taxes is a good idea; 50 percent think it is a bad idea. The proportion of residents who think this fiscal reform is a good idea was similar in June 2003 (46%), January 2004 (45%), and May 2004 (40%). Today, public opposition to this local fiscal change among the state’s likely voters stands at 56 percent. Majority opposition to relaxing this low supermajority vote requirement exists across political parties. The proportion of residents who think this fiscal policy change is a bad idea increases with income and homeownership. Latinos are more likely than whites to say that changing the local supermajority vote requirement on taxes is a good idea (53% to 40%). While the governor and legislature have struggled in recent years to muster the votes needed to pass a state budget on time, there is public opposition to changing the state rule that requires two-thirds of each house of the legislature to pass a state budget and new taxes. Less than half of adult residents (45%) favor replacing the two-thirds vote requirement with a 55 percent requirement, and a slight majority of likely voters (53%) say this is a bad idea. We also found less than a majority in June 2003 (46%) and August 2003 (39%) who believed that this fiscal reform was a good idea. The response to changing the supermajority vote requirement to pass a state budget and new taxes is similar across political groups and regions of the state. Public support for lowering this vote requirement declines with age, education, and homeownership. Latinos (56%) are more likely than whites (41%) to want to replace the two-thirds requirement for passing the state budget and taxes with a 55 percent majority vote of the legislature. “Do you think it is a good idea or bad idea to replace the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for voters to pass local special taxes?” Good idea Bad idea Don't know All Adults 43% 50 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 43% 39% 42% 51 56 54 654 Likely Voters 40% 56 4 “Do you think it is a good idea or a bad idea to replace the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for the state legislature to pass a budget?” Good idea Bad idea Don't know All Adults 45% 47 8 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 43% 42% 46% 49 52 47 867 Likely Voters 41% 53 6 - 12 - National Political Context Overall Direction As President George W. Bush begins his second term in office, a majority of Californians (51%) think the nation is headed in the wrong direction, while 43 percent think things are generally going right. Likely voters are similarly negative (52% wrong direction, 43% right direction). These views are virtually unchanged from September 2004 (54% wrong direction, 42% right direction) and September 2003 (51% wrong direction, 42% right direction). Californians are more positive about the state of the state (46% right direction, 41% wrong direction) than the state of the nation. There is a sharp partisan divide in perceptions of the nation: 75 percent of Republicans say the country is headed in the right direction; 74 percent of Democrats say it is headed in the wrong direction; and independents are more likely to be negative than positive (53% wrong direction, 40% right direction). There is also a strong regional divide: A majority of residents in the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles think things are going in the wrong direction; a majority in Other Southern California think they are going in the right direction; and Central Valley residents are divided. Fewer than half of Latinos (46%) and whites (45%) think the nation is now headed in the right direction. “Do you think that things in the United States are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?” Right direction Wrong direction Don't know All Adults 43% 51 6 Party Registration Dem 22% 74 4 Rep 75% 22 3 Central Ind Valley 40% 48% 53 46 76 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 30% 39% 53% 65 55 43 56 4 Likely Voters 43% 52 5 Californians’ perceptions are slightly more upbeat when it comes to the national economic outlook: 48 percent of all adults and likely voters expect good financial times over the next 12 months, while 43 percent anticipate bad times. There has been little change in economic expectations of all adults and likely voters since our September 2004 and September 2003 surveys. Most Republicans (72%) and nearly half of independents (46%) think good economic times are ahead, but most Democrats (60%) expect bad times. We found regional and gender differences as well. San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles County residents have the most negative economic outlook. And women are more negative than men. Californians’ expectations for the nation are similar to their expectations for the state economy during the next 12 months (47% good times, 39% bad times). “Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months, the United States will have good times financially or bad times?” Good times Bad times Don't know All Adults 48% 43 9 Party Registration Dem 32% 60 8 Rep 72% 22 6 Central Ind Valley 46% 53% 44 40 10 7 Region SF Bay Los Area Angeles 41% 45% 48 47 11 8 Other Southern California 56% 37 7 Likely Voters 48% 43 9 - 13 - National Political Context President’s Ratings President Bush’s overall job approval ratings in California have not changed significantly since his reelection. Today, 46 percent of California adults approve of the way he is handling his job, while 52 percent disapprove. In October 2004, 42 percent approved and 55 percent disapproved of his performance – ratings similar to his approval ratings in August and September 2004. Bush’s approval rating is lower than his first approval rating in our May 2001 survey – 57 percent – and is off sharply from its high point of 79 percent in December 2001. Californians give lower approval ratings to the president than Americans in general, according to surveys in January by CBS News/New York Times (49%) and ABC News/Washington Post (52%). Likely voters’ evaluations of the president are similar to all Californians’ ratings: 45 percent approve; 53 percent disapprove. However, there are sharp partisan differences: 86 percent of Republicans approve and 80 percent of Democrats disapprove of the way Bush is handling his job as president. Independents are more likely to disapprove than approve (57% to 39%). Most San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents disapprove, while most of those in the Central Valley and other Southern California say they approve of the president’s overall performance in office. Whites (48%) and Latinos (51%) give the president similar approval ratings for his overall job performance. President Bush’s ratings on handling the federal budget and taxes are lower, with only 40 percent of Californians approving of his performance and 53 percent disapproving. Among likely voters, 55 percent disapprove. The percentage of all Californians who disapprove has increased 9 points (from 44%) since January 2004. Today, most Republicans approve of the president’s performance on fiscal issues (76%), and most Democrats (78%) and independents (59%) disapprove. The percentages with negative opinions have climbed 10 points among Democrats and 13 points among independents since a year ago. Approval ratings on fiscal issues are similar among Latinos (45%) and whites (41%). On the situation in Iraq, President Bush’s approval ratings have not changed since August 2004: 34 percent approve; 63 percent disapprove. This is a 16-point drop from his 50 percent approval rating in August 2003. Opinions among all adults and likely voters are similar today. Nationwide, 40 percent approve of the president’s actions in Iraq, according to the January 2005 ABC News/Washington Post and the CBS News/New York Times surveys. In California today, approval ratings divide sharply along party lines: 71 percent of Republicans approve but 86 percent of Democrats and 70 percent of independents disapprove. A majority of residents in all regions disapprove of the president’s handling of the situation in Iraq. “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling …” his job as president of the United States? Approve Disapprove Don't know the federal budget and taxes? Approve Disapprove Don't know the situation in Iraq? Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 46% 52 2 40 53 7 34 63 3 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 17% 86% 39% 80 12 57 324 18 76 35 78 18 59 466 12 71 26 86 26 70 234 Likely Voters 45% 53 2 41 55 4 37 61 2 - 14 - National Political Context Second Presidential Term Californians have only modest hopes for President Bush’s second term. Overall, 51 percent agree strongly (31%) or somewhat (20%) that he will be a strong and capable president. However, 45 percent disagree somewhat (10%) or strongly (35%) with that perception. Likely voters have similar views. In our January 2001 survey, as Bush was beginning his first term in office, 54 percent of Californians expected him to be a strong president and 36 percent did not. Republicans are very upbeat about their candidate’s second term: Nine in 10 agree that he will be a strong and capable leader. However, seven in 10 Democrats disagree, 60 percent of them strongly. Independents are divided (48% agree; 50% disagree). By region, more than six in 10 in the Central Valley and Other Southern California think Bush will have an effective second term; 59 percent in the San Francisco Bay Area disagree; and Los Angeles residents are evenly divided, with 49 agreeing and 49 percent disagreeing. Men are more optimistic than women about Bush’s second term (55% to 48%). Confidence in the president relates strongly to his ratings on the Iraq situation and budget and taxes: Of those who approve of his efforts in Iraq, 77 percent strongly agree that he will have an effective second term; of those who like his fiscal policies, 64 percent have high expectations for the next four years. Six in 10 California adults (60%) and likely voters (63%) think the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush to accomplish a lot in the next four years. Californians are less optimistic today than they were in January 2001, when 50 percent thought the country would be divided and 44 percent thought the country would be able to unite behind President Bush and that he would be able to accomplish a lot over the next four years. Again, there are partisan differences: 56 percent of Republicans think the country will unite behind the president, but 75 percent of Democrats and 68 percent of independents think the national rift will persist. Across all party lines, Californians are more likely today than four years ago to think the nation will be divided and that it will be difficult for President Bush to accomplish a lot in office (Democrats: 75% to 68%; Republicans: 39% to 25%; independents: 68% to 55%). “Do you agree or disagree that George W. Bush will be a strong and capable president in his second term?” Strongly agree Somewhat agree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree Don't know All Adults 31% 20 10 35 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 9% 70% 21% 16 19 27 12 3 12 60 8 38 302 Likely Voters 34% 17 8 39 2 “Which of these statements comes closer to your point of view ...?” Country will be able to unite behind President Bush The country will be divided Don't know All Adults 35% 60 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 19% 56% 26% 75 39 68 656 Likely Voters 32% 63 5 - 15 - January 2005 National Political Context Situation in Iraq Californians have grown increasingly negative about the U.S. military effort in Iraq. Today, only three in 10 say things are going very (5%) or somewhat well (25%), while seven in 10 say things are going not too well (26%) or not at all well (43%). The proportion of California adults who say that things are going “not at all well” in Iraq has increased 7 points since August 2004 (36% to 43%) and 24 points since August 2003 (19% to 43%). Opinions about the situation in Iraq differ strongly across political parties. Democrats (64%) and independents (45%) are much more likely than Republicans (11%) to say things are not going at all well. Regionally, San Francisco Bay area residents (56%) are more likely than others to say things are not going at all well in Iraq. Latinos (44%) and whites (40%) are about equally negative about the situation. “In general, how would you say things are going for the U.S. in Iraq— very well, somewhat well, not too well, or not at all well?” Very well Somewhat well Not too well Not at all well Don't know All Adults 5% 25 26 43 1 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 1% 11% 6% 11 49 16 24 27 32 64 11 45 021 Likely Voters 6% 26 26 42 0 As a further sign of pessimism, only three in 10 Californians have at least some confidence that the upcoming Iraqi elections will produce a stable and effective government in that country. Seven in 10 say they are not too confident or not confident at all about the election’s outcome. Californians are more pessimistic than adults nationwide, with 56 percent of Americans expressing a lack of confidence and 42 percent feeling confident, according to a January ABC/Washington Post poll. Many Democrats (50%) and independents (39%) are not confident at all in the Iraqi election outcome, while half of Republicans are very or somewhat confident. San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents are more pessimistic than residents of other regions about the Iraqi elections. However, among those who approve of President Bush’s handling of the situation in Iraq, 61 percent are either very or somewhat confident that the elections will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively. “How confident are you that the elections in Iraq will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively?” Very confident Somewhat confident Not too confident Not confident at all Don't know All Adults 5% 26 33 35 1 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 1% 9% 4% 13 42 24 34 33 32 50 15 39 211 Likely Voters 5% 25 31 37 2 - 16 - National Political Context Social Security Reforms Only 29 percent of Californians believe the Bush administration’s claims that the Social Security program is in “crisis.” Forty-two percent agree that the system has major problems but no crisis, and 21 percent think the problems are minor. Nationwide, according to a December 2004 ABC News/Washington Post survey, a similar 25 percent think there is a Social Security crisis, while 49 percent believe there are major problems and 23 percent think there are only minor issues. In California, partisan views of the Social Security issue are similar, with about three in 10 across parties perceiving it as a crisis. Concerns about Social Security decline with age: Among those age 65 and older, only 12 percent think the program is in a crisis, compared to 34 percent of those under age 45. Californians are divided about whether to allow people to invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market – 49 percent of adults and 48 percent of likely voters support such an idea. Public support has declined since the 2000 election (64% in August 2000, 55% in February 2002, and 49% in January 2005). Nationwide, 53 percent support the plan, and 44 percent oppose it, according to a December ABC News/Washington Post survey. There are strong partisan differences about this proposal in California today: 65 percent of Republicans and 51 percent of independents favor it, but 60 percent of Democrats oppose it. The strongest opposition comes from those age 65 and older (63%), while 56 percent of those under age 45 favor the private investment plan. Favor for this Social Security reform also increases with income. Among those who think the program is in crisis, 58 percent favor the private investment plan. Among those who think there are major problems but no crisis, 52 percent support it. Thirty-six percent of Californians said they would invest their own Social Security funds in the stock market, but 60 percent would not. Nationwide, the December ABC/Washington Post survey found a similar 37 percent would invest in stocks, but 62 percent would not. In California, those with incomes above $80,000 are the most likely to say they would put their Social Security funds in the stock market. “Which of the following four statements comes closest to your own view of the Social Security program …” Program is in crisis Program has major problems but is not in crisis Program has minor problems Program has no problems Don't know All Adults 29% 42 21 4 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 26% 30% 30% 42 49 41 25 15 23 444 322 18-44 34% 40 19 4 3 Age 45-64 29% 47 19 3 2 65+ 12% 43 32 8 5 “Would you support or oppose a plan in which people who chose to could invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market?” Support Oppose Don't know All Adults 49% 46 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 36% 65% 51% 60 31 45 444 18-44 56% 39 5 Age 45-64 46% 49 5 65+ 29% 63 8 - 17 - January 2005 National Political Context Federal Budget and Tax Issues The federal budget deficit is also more likely to be seen as a “major problem” (50%) rather than a “crisis” (29%). However, less than one in five Californians considers it a minor problem or not a problem. Among likely voters, one in three says the budget deficit is a national crisis. Democrats (41%) and independents (34%) are much more likely than Republicans (15%) to call the federal budget deficit a crisis. Perceptions of a crisis are also higher among college graduates (35%) than less-educated residents and among San Francisco Bay Area residents (36%) than those living elsewhere in the state. Among the seven in 10 California adults who describe their state government’s budget gap between spending and revenues as a “big problem,” 36 percent think that the federal budget deficit is a crisis, 49 percent believe it as a major problem, and 13 percent see it as a minor problem or no problem. By a 13-point margin, more Californians oppose (50%) than support (37%) making the 2001 tax cuts permanent. Among likely voters, opinions are similar, with 50 percent opposed and 39 percent in support. Sixty percent of Republicans want the tax cuts implemented in 2001 to be permanent, while 66 percent of Democrats and 56 percent of independents oppose this tax policy. Opposition to making the tax cuts permanent outweighs support in all demographic groups and in all regions except for Other Southern California, which is divided. Support is stronger among those with incomes of $80,000 or more (44%) than among those with less income. Of those who approve of the way President Bush is handling the federal budget and taxes, 59 percent favor and 32 percent oppose making the tax cuts permanent. “Which of these statements best describes the federal budget deficit …” It is in a crisis It is a major problem for the country but is not a crisis It is a minor problem for the country It is not a problem for the country Don't know All Adults 29% 50 15 3 3 Dem 41% Party Registration Rep 15% 47 56 Ind 34% 50 8 25 13 123 320 Likely Voters 33% 51 13 2 1 “As you may know, the 2001 tax cuts are set to expire in 2011. Do you support or oppose making those tax cuts permanent?” Support Oppose Don't know All Adults 37% 50 13 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 22% 60% 31% 66 29 56 12 11 13 Likely Voters 39% 50 11 - 18 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, research director and survey director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance in research and writing from Renatta DeFever, Kristy Michaud, and Kim Curry, survey research associates; and Jennifer Paluch, PPIC research associate. The survey was conducted with funding from The James Irvine Foundation and benefited from discussions with Irvine staff and grantees and regional focus groups with voters, funded by the foundation; however, the survey methods, questions, and content of the report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,002 California adult residents interviewed between January 11 and January 18, 2005. Interviewing took place on weekday nights and weekend days, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers that ensured that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in California were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to six times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (age 18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Publication Services translated the survey into Spanish, and Schulman, Ronca & Bucuvalas, Inc. conducted the telephone interviewing. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of California’s adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,002 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. The sampling error for the 1,613 registered voters is +/- 2.5 percent. The sampling error for the 1,169 likely voters is +/- 3 percent, and the sampling error for each of the half samples is also +/- 3 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. Throughout the report, we refer to four geographic regions. “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. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, and “Other Southern California” includes the mostly suburban regions of Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Diego Counties. These four regions were chosen for analysis because they are the major population centers of the state, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population. We present specific results for Latinos because they account for about 30 percent of the state’s adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing voter groups. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. We do compare the opinions of registered Democrats, Republicans, and independents. The “independents” category includes only those who are registered to vote as “decline to state.” We compare PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted by ABC News/Washington Post and CBS News/New York Times. We used earlier PPIC Statewide Surveys to analyze trends over time in California. - 19 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY ON THE CALIFORNIA STATE BUDGET JANUARY 11— JANUARY 18, 2005 2,002 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/-2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. Which one issue facing California today do you think is the most important for the governor and state legislature to work on in 2005? [code, don’t read] 22% education, schools 20 state budget, deficit, taxes 15 economy, jobs, unemployment 8 immigration, illegal immigration 5 health care, health costs, HMO reform 2 crime, gangs 2 driver’s licenses for immigrants 17 other (specify) 9 don’t know 2. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 46% right direction 41 wrong direction 13 don't know 3. Turning to economic conditions in California, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 47% good times 39 bad times 14 don't know 4. As you may know, the state government has an annual budget of around 110 billion dollars and currently faces a multibillion dollar gap between state spending and state revenue. Do you think that this budget gap is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today? 70% big problem 23 somewhat of a problem 4 not a problem 3 don't know 5. How would you prefer to deal with the state's budget gap – mostly through spending cuts, mostly through tax increases, through a mix of spending cuts and tax increases, or do you think that it is okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit? 34% mostly through spending cuts 11 mostly through tax increases 40 mixture of spending cuts and tax increases 6 okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit 3 other answer (specify) 6 don't know - 21 - 6. In general, do you think the state government could spend less and still provide the same level of services? 64% yes, could spend less [ask q. 6a] 31 no, could not spend less [ask q. 7] 5 don't know [ask q. 7] 6a. How much could the state government cut its spending without reducing services? [read list] 18% under 10 percent 42 10 percent to under 20 percent 15 20 percent to under 30 percent 11 30 percent or more 14 don't know I am going to ask about specific areas where the State of California spends money. Given the budget gap, please tell me if you think that the state government should, in the next fiscal year beginning July 1st, spend more money than it does now, the same amount as now, or less money than now. [rotate questions 7 to 10] 7. How about the state's corrections system, including prisons? 13% more money 36 same amount of money 46 less money 5 don't know 8. How about the K through 12 public education system? 62% more money 27 same amount of money 10 less money 1 don't know 9. How about public colleges and universities? 44% more money 37 same amount of money 16 less money 3 don't know 10. How about health and human services? 47% more money 33 same amount of money 17 less money 3 don't know Tax and fee increases could be used to help reduce the state’s large gap between spending and revenue. For each of the following, please say if you favor or oppose the proposal. [rotate questions 11 to 13] 11. How about raising the top rate of the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians? 69% favor 28 oppose 3 don't know 12. How about increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcoholic beverages? 74% favor 25 oppose 1 don't know 13. How about raising the state portion of the sales tax? 32% favor 64 oppose 4 don't know 14. In general, which of the following statements do you agree with more – I'd rather pay higher taxes to support a larger state government that provides more services, or I'd rather pay lower taxes and have a smaller state government that provides fewer services? 49% higher taxes and more services 44 lower taxes and fewer services 7 don't know 15. When it comes to the tough choices involved in the state budget, both in deciding how much Californians should pay in taxes and how to fund state programs, whose approach do you most prefer: [rotate] (1) Governor Schwarzenegger's, (2) the Democrats’ in the legislature, [or] (3) the Republicans’ in the legislature? 29% Governor Schwarzenegger's 35 the Democrats' in the legislature 18 the Republicans' in the legislature 4 other answer (specify) 14 don't know 16. When it comes to long-term issues of reforming the state budget process, both in terms of changing the way the state taxes and the state spends money, which approach do you most prefer: [rotate] (1) the governor and legislature should pass new laws [or] (2) the California voters should decide at the ballot box? 27% the governor and legislature should pass new laws 68 the California voters should decide at the ballot box 2 other answer (specify) 3 don't know 17. Overall, do you have a favorable or an unfavorable impression of the plans and policies for California that Governor Schwarzenegger presented in his recent "state of the state" speech? 42% favorable 32 unfavorable 18 haven't heard about the speech (volunteered) 8 don't know 18. Do you approve or disapprove of the governor's plan to call a special session of the state legislature to pass new laws on finance, education, pension, and redistricting reforms? 67% approve 21 disapprove 12 don't know 18a.Governor Schwarzenegger also plans to use the "California Performance Review" report that was completed last year to reorganize state agencies and eliminate unnecessary boards and commissions. Do you think this will help the state's fiscal situation a lot, somewhat, not much, or not at all? 25% a lot 47 somewhat 14 not much 7 not at all 1 haven't heard about it (volunteered) 6 don't know - 22 - 19. Recently, Governor Schwarzenegger proposed a budget plan for the next fiscal year that includes withholding money from K to 12 public education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of the gasoline sales tax away from transportation projects, and using state bonds. The plan includes no new taxes. In general, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the governor’s budget plan? 38% satisfied 55 dissatisfied 7 don't know [rotate questions 20 and 21] 20. Do you think that tax increases should have been included in the governor's budget plan? 49% yes 45 no 6 don't know 21. Overall, how concerned are you about the effects of the spending reductions in the governor's budget plan – very concerned, somewhat concerned, not too concerned, or not at all concerned? 31% very concerned 42 somewhat concerned 15 not too concerned 10 not at all concerned 2 don't know 22. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California legislature is handling its job? 37% approve 50 disapprove 13 don't know 23. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Arnold Schwarzenegger is handling his job as Governor of California? 60% approve 33 disapprove 7 don't know [rotate questions 24 to 28] 24. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of the state budget and taxes? 48% approve 41 disapprove 11 don't know 25. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the state's kindergarten through twelfth grade public education system? 34% approve 51 disapprove 15 don't know 26. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of transportation and traffic congestion? 35% approve 37 disapprove 28 don't know 27. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is reforming California government? 58% approve 30 disapprove 12 don't know 28. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? 56% approve 32 disapprove 12 don't know 29. Governor Schwarzenegger is considering calling a special election to vote on financial, educational, and governmental reforms. Do you think it is better to have a special election later this year or is it better to wait until the scheduled election of June 2006? 45% better to have a special election [ask q. 29a] 50 better to wait until scheduled election in 2006 [ask q. 30] 5 don't know [ask q. 30] 29a.Would this be true if you knew that special elections cost the state between 50 and 70 million dollars to run? 46% yes 47 no 7 don't know - 23 - January 2005 If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, he may ask the voters to approve the following measures on the state ballot. [rotate questions 30 and 31] 30. A legislative redistricting reform measure that requires an independent panel of three retired judges, instead of the state legislature and governor, to adopt a new redistricting plan. Would you vote yes or no? 44% yes 41 no 15 don't know 31. A limit on the amount of money that the state could spend each year equal to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across the board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Would you vote yes or no? 59% yes 32 no 9 don't know Spending and tax reforms have been proposed to address issues in the state budget. For each of the following, please say whether you think the proposal is a good idea or a bad idea. [rotate questions 32 and 33] 32. How about replacing the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for voters to pass local special taxes? 43% good idea 50 bad idea 7 don't know 33. How about replacing the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for the state legislature to pass a budget? 45% good idea 47 bad idea 8 don't know 34. At this time, how much of a problem for state and local government budgets is the amount that is being spent on their public employee pension or retirement systems? Is this a big problem, somewhat of a problem or not a problem in California today? 31% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 17 not a problem 11 don't know 35. Would you favor or oppose changing the pension systems for new public employees from defined benefits to a defined contribution system similar to a 401(k) plan? 61% favor 25 oppose 14 don't know 36. How much of the time do you think you can trust the government in Sacramento to do what is right – just about always, most of the time, or only some of the time? 5% just about always 25 most of the time 63 only some of the time 5 none of the time/not at all (volunteered) 2 don't know 37. Do you think things in the United States are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 43% right direction 51 wrong direction 6 don't know 38. Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months the United States will have good times financially or bad times? 48% good times 43 bad times 9 don't know 39. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president of the United States? 46% approve 52 disapprove 2 don't know 40. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the federal budget and taxes? 40% approve 53 disapprove 7 don't know 41. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the situation in Iraq? 34% approve 63 disapprove 3 don't know - 24 - 42. Do you agree or disagree that George W. Bush will be a strong and capable president in his second term? (if agree or disagree: Is that strongly or somewhat)? 31% strongly agree 20 somewhat agree 10 somewhat disagree 35 strongly disagree 4 don't know 43. Which of these statements comes closer to your point of view: [rotate] (1) the country will be able to unite behind President Bush, who will be able to accomplish a lot in the next four years [or] (2) the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush to accomplish a lot over the next four years? 35% the country will be able to unite behind President Bush 60 the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush 5 don't know 44. Which of the following four statements comes closest to your own view of the Social Security program: Would you say the program is in crisis, the program has major problems but is not in crisis, the program has minor problems, or the program has no problems? 29% program is in crisis 42 program has major problems but is not in crisis 21 program has minor problems 4 program has no problems 4 don't know 45. Would you support or oppose a plan in which people who choose to could invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market? 49% support 46 oppose 5 don't know 46. People in a plan like this would get: [rotate] (1) higher Social Security benefits if the stock market went up but (2) lower Social Security benefits if the stock market went down. Knowing that, would you personally put some of your Social Security money in the stock market or not? 36% yes 60 no 1 other (specify) 3 don't know 47. As you may know, the 2001 tax cuts are set to expire in 2011. Do you support or oppose making those tax cuts permanent? 37% support 50 oppose 13 don't know 48. Which of these statements do you think best describes the federal budget deficit: It is a crisis, it is a major problem for the country but not a crisis, it is a minor problem for the country, or it is not a problem for the country at all? 29% it is a crisis 50 it is a major problem for the country but not a crisis 15 it is a minor problem for the country 3 it is not a problem for the country at all 3 don't know 49. In general, how would you say things are going for the U.S. in Iraq – very well, somewhat well, not too well, or not at all well? 5% very well 25 somewhat well 26 not too well 43 not at all well 1 don't know 50. As you may know, elections for a new national government in Iraq are scheduled for late January. How confident are you that these elections will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively – very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident, or not confident at all? 5% very confident 26 somewhat confident 33 not too confident 35 not confident at all 1 don't know 51. How much of the time do you think you can trust the government in Washington to do what is right – just about always, most of the time, or only some of the time? 6% just about always 26 most of the time 59 only some of the time 7 none of the time/not at all (volunteered) 2 don't know - 25 - January 2005 52. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote? 81% yes [ask q. 53] 19 no [skip to q. 54] 53. Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent? 43% Democrat [ask q. 53b] 35 Republican [ask q. 53c] 4 another party (specify) [skip to q. 54] 18 independent [ask q. 53a] 53a.Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican Party or Democratic Party? 27% Republican party 43 Democratic party 21 neither 9 don’t know [go to q. 54] 53b. Would you call yourself a strong Democrat or not a very strong Democrat? 55% strong 43 not very strong 2 don’t know [go to q. 54] 53c. Would you call yourself a strong Republican or not a very strong Republican? 63% strong 35 not very strong 2 don’t know 54. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics – a great deal, a fair amount, only a little, or none? 28% great deal 43 fair amount 24 only a little 5 none 55. How often would you say you vote – always, nearly always, part of the time, seldom, or never? 60% always 17 nearly always 6 part of the time 3 seldom 14 never 56. Would you consider yourself to be politically … [rotate] 9% very liberal 22 somewhat liberal 29 middle-of-the-road 25 somewhat conservative 11 very conservative 4 don't know [57-67: demographic questions] - 26 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Angela Blackwell Founder and CEO PolicyLink Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley James E. Canales President The James Irvine Foundation Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Dennis A. Hunt Vice President Communications and Public Affairs The California Endowment Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Carol S. Larson President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Monica Lozano Publisher and CEO La Opinión Donna Lucas Deputy Chief of Staff Office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Max Neiman Professor Political Science Department University of California, Riverside Mark Paul Deputy Treasurer California Treasurer Phil Angelides Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board Emeritus The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center - 27 - PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA Board of Directors Cheryl White Mason, Chair Chief, Civil Liability Management Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office Edward K. Hamilton Chairman Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Alschuler, Inc. Gary K. Hart Founder Institute for Education Reform California State University, Sacramento Walter B. Hewlett Director Center for Computer Assisted Research in the Humanities David W. Lyon President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Arjay Miller Dean Emeritus Graduate School of Business Stanford University Ki Suh Park Design and Managing Partner Gruen Associates Constance L. Rice Co-Director The Advancement Project Thomas C. Sutton Chairman & CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board Emeritus The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center Advisory Council Mary C. Daly Research Advisor Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco Clifford W. Graves General Manager Department of Community Development City of Los Angeles Elizabeth G. Hill Legislative Analyst State of California Hilary W. Hoynes Associate Professor Department of Economics University of California, Davis Andrés E. Jiménez Director California Policy Research Center University of California Office of the President Norman R. King Executive Director San Bernardino Associated Governments Daniel A. Mazmanian C. Erwin and Ione Piper Dean and Professor School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Dean Misczynski Director California Research Bureau Rudolf Nothenberg Chief Administrative Officer (Retired) City and County of San Francisco Manuel Pastor Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies University of California, Santa Cruz Peter Schrag Contributing Editor The Sacramento Bee James P. Smith Senior Economist RAND Corporation PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 San Francisco, California 94111 Phone: (415) 291-4400 Fax: (415) 291-4401 www.ppic.org info@ppic.org" } ["___content":protected]=> string(102) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(123) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/ppic-statewide-survey-special-survey-on-the-california-state-budget-january-2005/s_105mbs/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8457) ["ID"]=> int(8457) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:37:46" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3663) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(8) "S 105MBS" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(8) "s_105mbs" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(12) "S_105MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(7) "1282128" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(93370) "PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY JANUARY 2005 Public Policy Institute of California Special Survey on the California State Budget in collaboration with The James Irvine Foundation ○○○○○ Mark Baldassare Research Director & Survey Director The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) is a private operating foundation established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC’s research agenda focuses on three program areas: population, economy, and governance and public finance. Studies within these programs are examining the underlying forces shaping California’s future, cutting across a wide range of public policy concerns, including education, health care, immigration, income distribution, welfare, urban growth, and state and local finance. PPIC was created because three concerned citizens – William R. Hewlett, Roger W. Heyns, and Arjay Miller – recognized the need for linking objective research to the realities of California public policy. Their goal was to help the state’s leaders better understand the intricacies and implications of contemporary issues and make informed public policy decisions when confronted with challenges in the future. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. David W. Lyon is founding President and Chief Executive Officer of PPIC. Cheryl White Mason is Chair of the Board of Directors. Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 • San Francisco, California 94111 Telephone: (415) 291-4400 • Fax: (415) 291-4401 info@ppic.org • www.ppic.org Preface The PPIC Statewide Survey series provides policymakers, the media, and the general public with objective, advocacy-free information on the perceptions, opinions, and public policy preferences of California residents. Inaugurated in April 1998, the survey series has generated a database that includes the responses of more than 110,000 Californians. The current survey is the fourth in a series of special surveys on the California State Budget and Fiscal System, begun in June 2003 and conducted in collaboration with The James Irvine Foundation. At the same time that the state government faces the immediate challenge of addressing the current budget gap between state spending and state revenue, an array of structural reforms of the state and local finance system is being considered to cope with long-term issues involved in balancing the state budget. Public opinion surveys offer the state’s lawmakers an opportunity to consider the views of Californians on various fiscal proposals and their specific perceptions on spending and taxes. Over the years, California voters have made fiscal decisions through the initiative process—for example, Proposition 13 property tax reform, Proposition 98 state funding guarantees for K-12 public schools, Proposition 1A protection of local government revenues, and Proposition 57 state bonds to reduce the state’s budget shortfall—and the state’s residents will continue to have an important impact on the state and local fiscal system through the ballot box. This survey series seeks to raise public awareness, inform decisionmakers, and stimulate public discussions about the current state budget and the underlying state and local finance system. This report presents the responses of 2,002 adult residents throughout the state on a wide range of issues: • California state budget issues, including perceived severity of the state budget gap, preferred fiscal approach to the state’s budget gap, priorities for state spending, support for tax increases, perceptions of the state’s fiscal policymaking process, attitudes toward the governor’s State of the State address and related policy proposals, and overall satisfaction with the governor’s budget plan, support for his fiscal approach, and concerns about proposed spending reductions. • State issues, including the public’s perceptions of the most important problem in California, general direction of the state and outlook for the state’s economy, trust in state government officials, overall approval ratings of Governor Schwarzenegger and the state legislature, and approval ratings for the governor on specific issues. In addition, this survey considers attitudes toward a proposed special election and fiscal, political, and pension reforms. • National issues, including general direction of the nation and outlook for the national economy, trust in the federal government, overall approval ratings for President Bush and approval ratings for the president on specific issues, perceptions of Bush’s second term in the presidency, and attitudes regarding the federal budget and taxes, the Social Security system and proposed reforms, and the situation in Iraq. • The extent to which Californians may differ with regard to attitudes toward spending and taxes by party affiliation, demographics, race/ethnicity, and region of residence. This is the 53rd PPIC Statewide Survey, which has included a number of special editions on the Central Valley (11/99, 3/01, 4/02, 4/03, 4/04), Los Angeles County (3/03, 3/04), Orange County (9/01, 12/02, 12/03, 12/04), San Diego County (7/02), population growth (5/01), land use (11/01, 11/02), housing (11/04), the environment (6/00, 6/02, 7/03, 11/03, 7/04), the California state budget (6/03, 1/04, 5/04), and California’s future (8/04). Copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). Copies of this and earlier reports are posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). For questions about the survey, please contact survey@ppic.org. -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release California State Budget State Policy Issues National Political Context Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 7 13 19 21 27 - iii - Press Release Para ver este comunicado de prensa en español, por favor visite nuestra página de internet: http://www.ppic.org/main/pressreleaseindex.asp AS THE NATION GOES, SO GOES CALIFORNIA? PARTISANSHIP RETURNS WITH A VENGEANCE Big Concern About State Budget, Little Consensus About Solutions; Most Residents Pessimistic About Iraq Election SAN FRANCISCO, California, January 27, 2005 — The bipartisan support that characterized Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first year in office shows signs of cracking under the strain of a lingering budget crisis and renewed concern about the quality of public education, according to a new survey released by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) and The James Irvine Foundation. While overall support for the governor remains high – 60 percent of Californians say they approve of his performance – the percentage of Democrats and independents who disapprove of the job he is doing has grown substantially from one year ago. Democrats are now more likely to disapprove (49%) than approve (43%) of the governor’s job performance, a marked shift from one year ago (46% approve, 27% disapprove). While six in 10 independents still give the governor positive marks overall – the same as a year ago – his disapproval ratings among this group have nearly doubled (from 18% to 32%). When it comes to the three major issues that Californians want the state’s elected officials to tackle this year, support for the governor proves more elusive. Education (22%) has resurfaced as the top policy concern among Californians (up from 15% one year ago), followed by the state budget (20%), and the economy and jobs (15%). Currently, a majority of state residents disapprove of Governor Schwarzenegger’s performance with regard to schools (34% approve, 51% disapprove). And while a majority (56%) support his handling of economic issues, his approval ratings in handling the state budget have declined in the past year, falling from 54 percent to 48 percent. Driving the disappointing numbers on education and the state budget is a sharp partisan split: While Republicans remain supportive of the governor’s policies, Democrats and independents are far less charitable. Seventy-two percent of Democrats and 54 percent of independents disapprove of his handling of education issues. “Californians like Governor Schwarzenegger, but they no longer view him as being above the political fray,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. “This is problematic because politics-asusual is not an option for the governor – his plan to take a bold reform agenda to the people this year still requires broad bipartisan support.” In Us We Trust: Californians Want to Set Budget Priorities While education has claimed top billing, state budget issues weigh heavily on weary state residents. As in January 2004, the vast majority of Californians (70%) – and 76 percent of likely voters – view the multibillion dollar gap between revenues and spending as a big problem. Now, however, they do not endorse the governor’s budget: 38 percent of residents say they are satisfied and 55 percent say they are unsatisfied with his proposal. Last year, 57 percent were satisfied and 30 percent were unsatisfied with Schwarzenegger’s plan. Who do Californians want to make the tough choices involved in the current state budget? Thirty-five percent favor Democrats in the legislature, 29 percent prefer Governor Schwarzenegger, and 18 percent prefer Republicans in the legislature. A year ago, the governor was preferred over Democrats in the legislature by 33 percent to 27 percent. The increased support for the legislature on this dimension is notable, given that their dismal approval ratings (37%) remain virtually unchanged from one year ago. Ultimately, state residents trust themselves to make the call: 68 percent believe voters should make decisions about the budget process rather than abdicate that responsibility to the governor and legislature (27%). -v- Press Release Taxes or Spending Cuts? Yes, But … The governor’s proposed budget included a variety of spending reductions but no new taxes. Where does the public stand? Forty percent favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases, 34 percent favor mostly spending cuts, and only 11 percent prefer mostly tax increases. Although 45 percent of Californians oppose new taxes, 49 percent think tax increases should have been included in the budget plan – a seven-point increase over a year ago that reflects growing support for taxes among Democrats and independents. So who should pay to help get the state out of its current financial hole? Someone else. As in past PPIC surveys, a majority of Californians support raising the tax rate on the state’s top income bracket (69% favor, 28% oppose) and increasing cigarette and alcohol taxes (74% favor, 25% oppose). However, they steadfastly oppose increasing the state portion of the sales tax (64% oppose, 32% favor). Residents are also not willing to bite the bullet when it comes to cuts in spending. Most Californians (73%) express concern about the effects of budget cuts in the governor’s plan. And most are also opposed to spending cuts in the major programs that dominate the state budget. Rather than cutting program funding, majorities support spending more or the same amount on K-12 education (62% more, 27% same amount), health and human services (47% more, 33% same amount), and colleges and universities (44% more, 37% same amount). Support for spending cuts (46%) is apparent in only one area — prisons and corrections. Political Reform a Mixed Bag for State Residents While Governor Schwarzenegger’s State of the State address was moderately well received (42% favorable, 32% unfavorable), his request that the legislature go into special session clearly resonated with state residents: 67 percent say they approve of this plan. Residents are also supportive of the governor’s call for reorganizing state agencies and eliminating unnecessary boards and commissions, with most saying these reforms would help a lot (25%) or somewhat (47%) with the state’s fiscal situation. The governor’s suggestion that he might call a special election in 2005 to allow voters to decide on a package of reforms receives a far more mixed response. Half of state residents (50%) and likely voters (52%) say it would be better to wait until the next scheduled election in June 2006. When residents are told the estimated price tag for a special election – $50 million to $70 million – support drops to 20 percent. Californians are also mixed in their responses to the specific set of reforms being proposed for the special ballot: • Redistricting Reform – 44 percent support legislative redistricting reform. A majority of Republicans (56%) support such a reform, while a majority of Democrats (53%) oppose it. • Fiscal Reform – 59 percent support limiting state spending to what is raised in revenues in a given year. • Pension Reform – 61 percent support changing the pension system for new public employees from defined benefits to defined contributions. However, only three in 10 residents view the pension and retirement system as a big problem for state and local government budgets. Partisan Differences Abound Over Social Security, Taxes, Iraq As President George W. Bush begins his second term in office, Californians are resigned to a national schism: 60 percent believe the county will be divided under his leadership, while 35 percent say the nation will unite. In January 2001, 50 percent expected a nation divided while 44 percent were betting on unity. Demonstrating the overall lack of consensus are Californians’ views of the president’s capabilities as a leader as well as his overall job approval ratings: 51 percent agree that the president will be a strong and capable leader in his second term and 45 percent disagree, while 52 percent disapprove of the way he is handling his duties and 46 percent approve. Attitudes about important national issues also reflect the charged partisan atmosphere. Californians are divided about the Bush administration’s plan to allow people to invest their Social Security contributions in the stock market – 49 percent support such a plan and 46 percent oppose it. If such a program existed, 36 percent of state residents say they would invest in the market while 60 percent would not. A rare point of agreement? Few state residents (29%) – Democrats (26%) and Republicans (30%) – buy the hype that the program is in crisis. But 42 percent do believe that Social Security has major problems. - vi - Press Release Similar to their view of retirement programs, few Californians (29%) are inclined to believe that the federal budget deficit is a crisis rather than a major problem (50%). However, the consensus ends there: Exactly half of state residents oppose making the 2001 temporary tax cuts permanent, while 37 percent support the notion. Sixty percent of Republicans support a permanent cut, while 66 percent of Democrats oppose it. On a related note, a majority of residents (53%) disapprove of the way the president – who supports permanent cuts – is handling the federal budget and taxes. A large majority of Californians (63%) are also critical of the way President Bush is handling the situation in Iraq, and only 30 percent say things are going very (5%) or somewhat (25%) well there. As a further sign of pessimism, only three in 10 have at least some confidence that the upcoming Iraqi elections will produce a stable and effective government. While Republicans are more likely to express confidence in the election process (51%), only 14 percent of Democrats hold out such hope. More Key Findings • Fairy Wings? (page 9) Governor Schwarzenegger receives poor ratings on another State of the State topic – transportation. Currently, 35 percent approve and 37 percent disapprove of his handling of this issue. The governor receives less than majority support from Republicans, Democrats, and independents on this subject. • State: Right Track – Nation: Wrong Track (pages 13, 21) More state residents than not believe the state is currently headed in the right direction (46% right direction, 41% wrong direction) and see good economic times ahead (47% good times, 39% bad times). However, a majority (51%) think the nation is headed in the wrong direction. They are somewhat more optimistic about national economic conditions (48% good times, 43% bad times). • Distrust of Government (pages 24, 25) Only one in three Californians say they can trust the state or federal governments to do what is right just about always (5% state government, 6% federal government) or most of the time (25% state government, 26% federal government). About the Survey The California State Budget and Fiscal System Survey — a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and The James Irvine Foundation — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the fourth in a series intended to raise public awareness, inform decisionmakers, and stimulate public discussions about the current budget and the underlying state and local finance systems. Findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,002 California adult residents interviewed between January 11 and January 18, 2005. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. For more information on methodology, see page 19. Mark Baldassare is research director at PPIC, where he holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has directed since 1998. His recent book, A California State of Mind: The Conflicted Voter in a Changing World, is available at www.ppic.org. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public policy through objective, nonpartisan research on the economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. This report will be posted on PPIC’s website (www.ppic.org) on January 27. ### - vii - Percent Saying State Budget Gap Is a Big Problem 43 23 70 Legislative Redistricting Reform Measure 14 46 40 Percent all adults Big problem Somew hat of a problem Not a problem Don't know Percent Most Important Problem for Governor and Legislature to Work on in 2005 25 22 20 20 15 15 10 5 0 Education Budget Economy and Jobs Country Will Be United Under President Bush 5 35 60 Percent all adults Able to unite Divided Don't know Percent Percent likely voters Yes No Don't know Governor's Approval Ratings 70 60 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Overall 34 Education 56 48 Budget Economy and Jobs Percent Support for Investing Social Security Money in Stock Market 70 65 60 49 50 51 40 36 30 20 10 0 All adults Dem Rep Ind Percent California State Budget Approaching the Budget Gap Californians are as concerned today as they were a year ago about the state’s budget. After Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger released his budget plan on January 10th, a large majority of adult residents (70%) and likely voters (76%) said they saw the gap between spending and revenues as a big problem for the people of California. An identical 70 percent of residents saw the budget gap as a big problem in January 2004. Public concern about the state’s budget gap is high across all regions and political and demographic groups. Democrats (77%) and independents (71%) are more likely than Republicans (66%), whites (74%) are more likely than Latinos (61%), and San Francisco Bay Area residents (75%) are more likely than people in other regions to think the budget gap is a big problem. Concern also increases with age, education, income, and homeownership. “The state government has an annual budget of around $110 billion and currently faces a multibillion dollar gap between state spending and state revenue. Do you think that this budget gap is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today?” Big problem Somewhat of a problem Not a problem Don't know All Adults 70% 23 4 3 Central Valley 69% 23 5 3 Region SF Bay Area 75% 19 2 4 Los Angeles 68% 24 5 3 Other Southern California 67% 25 4 4 Likely Voters 76% 20 3 1 Given the concern, what do Californians want their state government to do about the budget gap? Forty percent favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases; 34 percent favor mostly spending cuts. Only a few are in favor of mostly tax increases (11%) or think it is okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit (6%). A year ago, support for a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases was higher (50%). The decline reflects growing support since then for mostly spending cuts (28% to 34%) and mostly tax increases (7% to 11%). Currently, 54 percent of Democrats prefer to deal with the budget gap through a mix of spending cuts and tax increases, while 41 percent of independents favor a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases, and 55 percent of Republicans prefer mostly spending cuts. “How would you prefer to deal with the state’s budget gap …” Mixture of spending cuts and tax increases Mostly through spending cuts Mostly through tax increases Okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit Don't know / Other answer All Adults 40% 34 11 6 9 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 54% 28% 41% 20 55 34 16 5 12 455 678 Likely Voters 43% 37 11 3 6 -1- California State Budget State Spending Priorities In light of their preference for spending cuts, where are Californians most willing to see the state spend less money? Support for spending cuts falls short of a majority in all four of the program areas that account for most of the spending in the state budget. In terms of priorities for increased spending, education tops the list. Californians’ fiscal priorities now are similar to those reported two years ago. About six in 10 adults and likely voters think that the state should spend more money for K-12 public schools. Democrats (72%) and independents (62%) are more likely than Republicans (43%) to favor increased spending. Majorities with children (69%) and without children (56%) favor spending more on schools. Public support for more school spending declines with age, income, and education. Forty-seven percent of residents and 40 percent of likely voters think the state should spend more on health and human services. Few adults and voters would prefer less spending in this area, but there are political differences about spending more: Democrats (58%) and independents (42%) are much more likely than Republicans (24%) to favor increased spending on health and human services. There is less than majority support for increased spending on public colleges and universities among all residents (44%) and likely voters (39%). Again, Democrats (52%) and independents (40%) are much more likely than Republicans (27%) to favor spending more, but few residents support less spending on higher education. Corrections is the only area in which about half of California adults (46%) and likely voters (50%) think the state should spend less money. Across party lines, few residents support more spending on the state’s correction system. “Given the budget gap, do you think the state should spend more money than it does now, the same amount as now, or less money than now on ..." K-12 public education Health and human services Public colleges and universities State’s corrections system More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know More money Same amount Less money Don’t know All Adults 62% 27 10 1 47 33 17 3 44 37 16 3 13 36 46 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 72% 43% 62% 22 36 29 6 18 6 033 58 24 42 30 40 39 9 34 17 322 52 27 40 35 45 41 11 25 16 233 12 12 11 35 39 37 48 46 47 535 Likely Voters 56% 29 13 2 40 36 22 2 39 39 19 3 11 35 50 4 -2- California State Budget State Tax Preferences Californians have definite ideas about the kinds of tax increases they would accept for reducing the budget gap. Although they oppose tax increases aimed at the general public, many support increases aimed at specific groups. Seventy-four percent favor increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcohol, and 69 percent support raising the top rate on the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians. In contrast, 64 percent oppose raising the state sales tax. These tax preferences are similar to those we found a year ago. Today, as in January 2004, only one of the three increases is favored across political groups: 79 percent of Democrats, 76 percent of independents, and 65 percent of Republicans support increasing cigarette and alcohol taxes. In contrast, 84 percent of Democrats, 73 percent of independents, but only 45 percent of Republicans favor raising taxes of the wealthiest Californians. Majorities across political groups and regions of the state oppose raising the state portion of the sales tax. “Do you favor or oppose …” Increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcoholic beverages? Favor Oppose Don't know Raising the top rate of the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians? Favor Oppose Don't know Raising the state portion of the sales tax? Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 74% 25 1 69 28 3 32 64 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 79% 20 1 65% 34 1 76% 24 0 84 45 73 14 52 25 232 38 27 33 58 71 62 425 Likely Voters 72% 27 1 65 32 3 35 62 3 Californians are closely divided when asked if they prefer a smaller state government with lower taxes and fewer services (44%) or a larger state government with higher taxes and more services (49%). A year ago, 48 percent favored lower taxes with fewer services while 43 percent favored higher taxes. The differences across political groups on this issue are large today: Democrats (59%) prefer to pay higher taxes for a larger state government with more services, Republicans (71%) would rather have lower taxes and a smaller state government with fewer services, and independents are divided. Likely voters tend to favor lower taxes and a smaller government with fewer services (50% to 41%). Whites (38%) are much less likely than Latinos (70%) to prefer the higher tax option. Support for paying higher taxes for a larger government with more services declines sharply with age, education, income, and homeownership. “Which statement do you agree with more: I’d rather pay higher taxes to support a larger state government that provides more services, or lower taxes and have a smaller state government that provides fewer services?” Higher taxes, more services Lower taxes, fewer services Don't know All Adults 49% 44 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 59% 31 24% 71 49% 43 10 5 8 Likely Voters 41% 50 9 - 3 - January 2005 California State Budget Fiscal Policymaking Process Whose approach to budget choices do Californians prefer? Thirty-five percent prefer the Democrats’ choice, 29 percent prefer Governor Schwarzenegger’s, and 18 percent prefer the Republicans’. A year ago, Governor Schwarzenegger got the nod over Democrats in the legislature by 33 percent to 27 percent, and 17 percent preferred the Republicans’ approach. Across party lines, Democrats now choose Democratic legislators by a wider margin than a year ago (50%, January 2004; 66%, January 2005). However, Republicans favor Governor Schwarzenegger by about the same margin (50%, January 2004; 46%, January 2005). About one in three independents continue to pick Governor Schwarzenegger’s approach to the budget as their favorite, and three in 10 still name the legislative Democrats. The Democratic legislators’ approach is most preferred by San Francisco Bay Area residents and by those who want to have a larger government with more services and higher taxes. Public support for Governor Schwarzenegger’s approach to the state budget is higher among whites than Latinos, homeowners than renters, and upper-income than lower-income residents. “When it comes to the tough choices involved in the current state budget, both in deciding how much Californians should pay in taxes and how to fund state programs, whose approach do you most prefer …” Governor Schwarzenegger's Democrats’ in the legislature Republicans’ in the legislature Other answer Don't know All Adults 29% 35 18 4 14 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 17% 66 5 4 8 46% 6 36 2 10 35% 29 13 7 16 Likely Voters 31% 37 18 5 9 However, Californians strongly prefer to have the state’s voters make decisions about reforming the budget process—a trend that we also noted a year ago. Two in three adults (68%) and likely voters (64%) would rather have the voters decide at the ballot box how to change the way that the state taxes and spends money. Only three in 10 would prefer that the governor and the legislature make these fiscal decisions by passing new laws. On this issue, there is no partisan divide. Solid majorities across regions and racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups prefer a vote at the ballot box to reform the budget process. “When it comes to long-term issues of reforming the state budget process, both in terms of changing the way the state taxes and the state spends money, which approach do you most prefer ...?” California voters should decide at the ballot box Governor and legislature should pass new laws Other answer Don't know All Adults 68% 27 2 3 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 69% 68% 66% 27 27 28 221 235 Likely Voters 64% 31 2 3 -4- California State Budget State of the State Address Governor Schwarzenegger’s second ”state of the state” speech, delivered on January 5th, was fairly well received. Overall, 42 percent of Californians had a favorable impression of the governor’s plans and policies, while 32 percent had an unfavorable impression. Eighteen percent had not heard about the speech and 8 percent had no opinion. A year ago, a similar proportion were favorably impressed (44%) or had no opinion (8%), but fewer were unfavorably impressed (18%), and more had not heard about his speech (30%). Among likely voters, 52 percent were favorably impressed and 33 percent were unfavorably impressed. Across parties, 68 percent of Republicans and 44 percent of independents were favorably impressed, but nearly half of Democrats had an unfavorable reaction (47%). “Overall, do you have a favorable or an unfavorable impression of the plans and policies for California that Governor Schwarzenegger presented in his ‘state of the state’ speech?” Favorable Unfavorable Haven't heard about the speech (volunteered) Don't know All Adults 42% 32 18 8 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 28% 47 68% 11 44% 33 16 17 15 948 Likely Voters 52% 33 10 5 One popular message in the State of the State address was the governor’s announcement that he was calling the state legislature into a special session to pass new laws on finance, education, pensions, and redistricting reform. Solid majorities of all adults (67%) and likely voters (69%) say they approve of this plan. Consensus is high across all regions in the state, political parties, and racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Approval is significantly higher among those who believe California is going in the right direction (80%) than among those who believe the state is going in the wrong direction (55%). “Do you approve or disapprove of the governor’s plan to call a special session of the state legislature to pass new laws on finance, education, pension, and redistricting reforms?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 67% 21 12 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 55% 33 12 80% 10 10 73% 18 9 Likely Voters 69% 22 9 Governor Schwarzenegger also mentioned recommendations of the California Performance Review that he would like to see implemented this year. Specifically, he called for reorganizing state agencies and eliminating unnecessary boards and commissions. Most Californians think that these reforms would help a lot (25%) or somewhat (47%) with the state’s fiscal situation. However, Republicans (40%) are much more likely than Democrats (17%) and independents (24%) to say these reforms would help a lot. - 5 - January 2005 California State Budget Governor’s Budget Proposal On January 10th, Governor Schwarzenegger released a budget plan for the 2005-2006 fiscal year that emphasizes curbing state spending to help reduce the budget gap. The plan includes withholding money from K-12 public education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of the gasoline sales tax away from transportation projects, and borrowing with state bonds. As was true last year, the governor’s budget plan has no new taxes. Overall, 55 percent of adults and 54 percent of likely voters were dissatisfied with this budget plan and about four in 10 were satisfied. This contrasts with January 2004, when 57 percent of adults were satisfied and 30 percent were dissatisfied with the budget plan. Dissatisfaction with the budget plan is higher now than a year ago among Democrats (74% to 42%) and independents (54% to 17%) and even among Republicans (32% to 10%). Concerning taxes, 45 percent of Californians said there shouldn’t be any new taxes, but 49 percent think tax increases should have been included in the budget plan—a 7-point increase over a year ago. The proportion favoring new taxes increased among Democrats (58% to 65%) and independents (32% to 57%) but not Republicans (31% to 28%). Today, three in four residents are very concerned (31%) or somewhat concerned (42%) about the effects of the spending cuts in the governor’s plan, reflecting a higher level of concern than a year ago (26% very concerned, 42% somewhat concerned). “The governor recently proposed a budget that includes withholding money from education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of gasoline sales tax, and using state bonds. In general, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with this budget plan?” Satisfied Dissatisfied Don't know All Adults 38% 55 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 21% 62% 38% 74 32 54 568 Likely Voters 40% 54 6 “Do you think that tax increases should have been included in the budget plan?” Yes, should have No, should not have Don't know All Adults 49% 45 6 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 65% 31 4 28% 68 4 57% 38 5 Likely Voters 49% 48 3 “How concerned are you about the effects of the spending cuts in the budget plan?” Very concerned Somewhat concerned Not too concerned Not at all concerned Don't know All Adults 31% 42 15 10 2 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 45% 43 8 3 1 18% 38 27 16 1 29% 43 16 10 2 Likely Voters 34% 39 16 10 1 -6- State Policy Issues Most Important Problem in 2005 When Californians are asked to name the one issue that is most important for the governor and legislature to work on this year, their top three concerns are schools and education (22%), the state budget (20%), and jobs and the economy (15%). Fewer than one in 10 name any other issue, including immigration, health care, crime and gangs, driver’s licenses, transportation, and the environment. The most significant change in our past three surveys is the increasing percentage of residents who mention schools (11% in February 2003; 15% in January 2004; 22% in January 2005) and the declining percentage who mention the economy (28% in February 2003; 21% in January 2004; 15% in January 2005) as the most important issue for the governor and legislature to work on. Compared to a year ago, the public’s consideration of the state budget as a top policy priority has sharply declined (31% to 20%) Indeed, the mention of schools and education as the most important issue is at its highest point since January 2002. Schools are the top issue in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, while a slightly higher percentage of residents elsewhere name the state budget as the top issue. Latinos mention education ahead of all other issues; however, Latinos (8%) are more inclined than whites (0%) to name driver’s licenses as their top issue, while whites (26%) are more likely than Latinos (8%) to name the state budget. The ranking of issues by likely voters is similar to all adults. However, there are differences across political groups. Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to mention education as the top priority (29% to 15%). In contrast, Republicans and independents name the state budget as their most important concern (26% in both cases). Education is a top priority for those under the age of 55 and those with children in their homes. Upper-income, college-educated residents, and those age 55 and older name the state budget as their top priority. “Which one issue facing California today do you think is the most important for the governor and state legislature to work on in 2005?” Region Central All Adults Valley SF Bay Area Education, schools 22% 20% 31% State budget, deficit, taxes 20 22 20 Economy, jobs, unemployment 15 17 18 Immigration, illegal immigration 8 6 5 Health care/costs, HMO reform 5 6 4 Crime, gangs 211 Driver’s licenses 221 Other* 17 14 13 Don't know 9 12 7 *No single issue was mentioned by more than 2 percent of respondents. Los Angeles 23% 15 14 11 6 3 2 16 10 Other Southern California 16% 22 12 11 5 2 2 20 10 Latinos 22% 9 14 9 5 4 8 15 14 -7- State Policy Issues Job Performance Ratings for State Officials While 37 percent approve of the overall job the state legislature is doing today, 50 percent of Californians are not happy with the legislators’ performance. This represents a decline from the 43 percent approval rating given to the legislature in October 2004, although similar to a year ago in January 2004 (36%). Today’s approval ratings are, however, higher than in August 2003, when our survey showed an historic low of 28 percent of Californians approving of the way the legislature was handling its job. Among likely voters, 57 percent disapprove of the legislature’s performance, and a majority across all political groups also disapprove of the way that the lawmakers are handling their responsibilities. Latinos (49% approve, 38% disapprove) give higher ratings than whites (32% approve, 54% disapprove). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California legislature is handling its job?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 37% 50 13 Party Registration Dem 36% 51 13 Rep 35% 56 9 Central Ind Valley 39% 52 38% 51 9 11 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 30% 56 40% 47 38% 49 14 13 13 Likely Voters 33% 57 10 In the wake of Governor Schwarzenegger’s highly publicized “state of the state” address and budget plan for the next fiscal year, six in 10 Californians approve of the way he is handling his job, while one in three disapprove. Among likely voters, a similar 63 percent approve and 32 percent disapprove. The governor’s approval rating among all Californians is virtually the same as his rating in January (59%) and October (61%) 2004. However, compared to a year ago, the percentage of Californians expressing disapproval is higher (22% then, 33% today), with fewer Californians expressing no opinion (19% then, 7% today). Republicans (88%) overwhelmingly approve of the governor’s job performance, just as they did a year ago. However, Democrats are now more likely to disapprove (49%) than approve (43%) of the way the governor is handling his job—a marked shift from his overall ratings among Democrats a year ago (46% approve, 27% disapprove, 27% don’t know). Six in 10 independents give the governor positive marks for his overall job performance—the same as a year ago—while disapproval ratings have increased since January 2004 (18% to 32%). We did find a significant racial/ethnic gap in Schwarzenegger’s approval ratings: Two in three whites (68%) compared to 47 percent of Latinos approve of his performance in office. While a majority of residents across all regions approve of the way the governor is handling state affairs, those who live in Other Southern California (68%) and the Central Valley (63%) give higher approval ratings than residents in Los Angeles (56%) and the San Francisco Bay Area (50%). “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Arnold Schwarzenegger is handling his job as governor of California?” Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 60% 33 7 Party Registration Dem 43% 49 8 Rep 88% 8 4 Ind 60% 32 8 Central Valley 63% 31 6 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 50% 56% 68% 42 38 25 86 7 Likely Voters 63% 32 5 -8- State Policy Issues Governor’s Report Card When it comes to the top three issues that Californians want their state’s elected officials to tackle this year, the governor’s approval ratings fall short of his overall job approval rating of 60 percent. A majority disapprove of his performance when it comes to schools, with just one in three approving of the way he is handling school issues. As for the state budget and taxes, the percentage who say they approve of the job he is doing falls just short of a majority, with four in 10 saying they aren’t happy with the way he is handling the situation. However, when it comes to jobs and the economy, a solid majority (56%) approve of the governor’s performance, with just one in three expressing dissatisfaction. The governor’s approval ratings on handling the state budget and taxes have declined in the past year (54% in January 2004, 55% in May 2004, 58% in August 2004, 48% in January 2005), while his disapproval ratings have climbed sharply from one year ago (26% to 41%). We do not have time trends available at this time for schools, the economy, government reform, or traffic and transportation. The governor receives high marks for his government reform efforts (58% approve, 30% disapprove). When asked about traffic congestion and transportation—in light of the high percentage of residents in our recent surveys who say this issue is a big problem in their part of California—the governor’s ratings are decidedly mixed (35% approve, 37% disapprove, 28% don’t know). San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents give the governor lower approval ratings than residents in the Central Valley and Other Southern California across these five domains. We also found sharply lower approval ratings among Democrats than Republicans. Latinos give lower approval ratings than whites when it comes to jobs and the economy, the state budget and taxes, and government reform. "Do you approve or disapprove of the way Governor Schwarzenegger is handling …" Reforming California government? Jobs and the economy? The state budget and taxes? Transportation and traffic congestion? The state’s K-12 public education system? Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 58% 30 12 56 32 12 48 41 11 35 37 28 34 51 15 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 40% 84% 65% 48 8 26 12 8 9 43 81 59 44 11 30 13 8 11 29 77 49 62 14 44 997 25 48 30 49 22 37 26 30 33 18 54 32 72 29 54 10 17 14 Latinos 50% 40 10 47 42 11 42 48 10 42 40 18 40 48 12 - 9 - January 2005 State Policy Issues Special Election and Political Reforms Governor Schwarzenegger’s recent suggestion that he might call a special election later in 2005 to allow voters to decide on a package of reforms receives a mixed response. About half of adults and likely voters think it would be better to wait until the next scheduled election in June 2006 to vote on reforms, while slightly fewer prefer to have a special election. A majority of Democrats are opposed to having a special election, while a majority of Republicans are in favor of it; independents are evenly divided. When voters are told the estimated price tag for a special election – $50 million to $70 million –about half of those who initially favored the special election say they no longer do so. As a result, only 20 percent of adults and 24 percent of likely voters would still prefer to have a special election in spite of the cost. This proposal has limited support across political groups as well when the cost is understood (Democrats: 14%; Republicans: 31%; independents: 23%). Among those who approve of the governor’s performance in office, 27 percent would prefer to have a special election, given the estimated price tag. “Governor Schwarzenegger is considering calling a special election to vote on financial, educational, and governmental reforms. Do you think it is better to have a special election later this year or is it better to wait until the scheduled election of June 2006?” Special election Wait until 2006 Don't know All Adults 45% 50 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 34% 58% 47% 62 37 51 452 Likely Voters 44% 52 4 Among the proposals that Governor Schwarzenegger might place on a special election ballot is a political reform of the legislative redistricting process. His idea of taking the decisionmaking power on drawing political boundaries away from the governor and state legislature, and giving this authority to an independent panel of retired judges, does not garner majority support. The California electorate is deeply divided over this issue: A majority of Democrats are opposed, a majority of Republicans are in favor of it, and independent voters show a slight favor for the proposal, although support falls below a majority in this group. A majority of Californians who approve of the governor’s overall performance in office favor this reform (53% yes, 32% no). Support for changing the political redistricting process increases with education and income. This proposal to create an independent redistricting commission received a similar response in September 2004 among likely voters (44% yes, 38% no). “If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, how would you vote on a legislative redistricting reform measure that requires an independent panel of three retired judges, instead of the state legislature and governor, to adopt a new redistricting plan. Would you vote yes or no?” Yes No Don't know All Adults 44% 41 15 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 34% 53 56% 30 47% 41 13 14 12 Likely Voters 46% 40 14 - 10 - State Policy Issues Special Election and Fiscal Reforms Governor Schwarzenegger mentioned in his state of the state address that he would like to place two fiscal reforms on a special election ballot for voter approval. The general concepts of state spending limits and changes in the government pension system both have majority support at this time. Six in 10 of the state’s adult residents (59%) and likely voters (64%) say they would vote yes on a state ballot measure that would limit the amount that the state could spend each year to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across-the-board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Public support for this reform falls just under a majority among Democrats, but the proposal is strongly favored by Republicans and independents. The “yes” vote for spending limits increases with age, education, income, and homeownership and is higher among whites (64%) than Latinos (50%). A year ago, seven in 10 adults (70%) and likely voters (71%) said a strict limit on state spending was a good idea. Another proposal would change the government pension system from defined benefits to defined contributions – a plan similar to the 401(k) system offered by many private employers. Three in 10 residents think that the public employee pension and retirement systems are a big problem for state and local government budgets, while seven in ten residents say this is at least somewhat of a problem. Six in 10 adult residents (61%) and likely voters (64%) would vote in favor of changing the government pension systems from defined benefits to defined contributions. The general concept is favored by a majority of residents across the regions of the state and increases with income. The proposal receives considerably less support among Democrats (53%) than among Republicans (72%) and independents (66%). How are the public’s attitudes toward Schwarzenegger tied to support of these proposed changes? Seven in 10 of those who currently approve of the governor’s overall performance in office would vote yes on state spending limits (72%) and are in favor of the proposed government pension reform (69%). “If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, how would you vote on limiting the amount that the state could spend each year equal to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across-the-board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Would you vote yes or no?” Yes No Don't know All Adults 59% 32 9 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 49% 77% 65% 41 16 29 10 7 6 Likely Voters 64% 28 8 “Would you favor or oppose changing the pension system for new public employees from defined benefits to a defined contribution system similar to a 401(k) plan?” Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults 61% 25 14 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 53% 72% 66% 34 19 22 13 9 12 Likely Voters 64% 26 10 - 11 - January 2005 State Policy Issues Supermajority Voting Reforms Californians are less supportive of fiscal reform measures that would make it easier to pass a state budget and raise local special taxes than they are of proposed fiscal reforms that would limit government spending and reform the government pension system. Currently, there are no efforts underway to place measures on the ballot that would lower the supermajority vote requirements for certain taxes; however, such changes have been proposed in the past as part of state and local fiscal reforms. California voters also rejected a lower threshold for passing a state budget in Proposition 56 last year (34% yes, 66% no). Forty-three percent of state residents think that replacing the two-thirds vote requirement with a 55 percent majority vote to raise local special taxes is a good idea; 50 percent think it is a bad idea. The proportion of residents who think this fiscal reform is a good idea was similar in June 2003 (46%), January 2004 (45%), and May 2004 (40%). Today, public opposition to this local fiscal change among the state’s likely voters stands at 56 percent. Majority opposition to relaxing this low supermajority vote requirement exists across political parties. The proportion of residents who think this fiscal policy change is a bad idea increases with income and homeownership. Latinos are more likely than whites to say that changing the local supermajority vote requirement on taxes is a good idea (53% to 40%). While the governor and legislature have struggled in recent years to muster the votes needed to pass a state budget on time, there is public opposition to changing the state rule that requires two-thirds of each house of the legislature to pass a state budget and new taxes. Less than half of adult residents (45%) favor replacing the two-thirds vote requirement with a 55 percent requirement, and a slight majority of likely voters (53%) say this is a bad idea. We also found less than a majority in June 2003 (46%) and August 2003 (39%) who believed that this fiscal reform was a good idea. The response to changing the supermajority vote requirement to pass a state budget and new taxes is similar across political groups and regions of the state. Public support for lowering this vote requirement declines with age, education, and homeownership. Latinos (56%) are more likely than whites (41%) to want to replace the two-thirds requirement for passing the state budget and taxes with a 55 percent majority vote of the legislature. “Do you think it is a good idea or bad idea to replace the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for voters to pass local special taxes?” Good idea Bad idea Don't know All Adults 43% 50 7 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 43% 39% 42% 51 56 54 654 Likely Voters 40% 56 4 “Do you think it is a good idea or a bad idea to replace the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for the state legislature to pass a budget?” Good idea Bad idea Don't know All Adults 45% 47 8 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 43% 42% 46% 49 52 47 867 Likely Voters 41% 53 6 - 12 - National Political Context Overall Direction As President George W. Bush begins his second term in office, a majority of Californians (51%) think the nation is headed in the wrong direction, while 43 percent think things are generally going right. Likely voters are similarly negative (52% wrong direction, 43% right direction). These views are virtually unchanged from September 2004 (54% wrong direction, 42% right direction) and September 2003 (51% wrong direction, 42% right direction). Californians are more positive about the state of the state (46% right direction, 41% wrong direction) than the state of the nation. There is a sharp partisan divide in perceptions of the nation: 75 percent of Republicans say the country is headed in the right direction; 74 percent of Democrats say it is headed in the wrong direction; and independents are more likely to be negative than positive (53% wrong direction, 40% right direction). There is also a strong regional divide: A majority of residents in the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles think things are going in the wrong direction; a majority in Other Southern California think they are going in the right direction; and Central Valley residents are divided. Fewer than half of Latinos (46%) and whites (45%) think the nation is now headed in the right direction. “Do you think that things in the United States are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction?” Right direction Wrong direction Don't know All Adults 43% 51 6 Party Registration Dem 22% 74 4 Rep 75% 22 3 Central Ind Valley 40% 48% 53 46 76 Region Other SF Bay Los Southern Area Angeles California 30% 39% 53% 65 55 43 56 4 Likely Voters 43% 52 5 Californians’ perceptions are slightly more upbeat when it comes to the national economic outlook: 48 percent of all adults and likely voters expect good financial times over the next 12 months, while 43 percent anticipate bad times. There has been little change in economic expectations of all adults and likely voters since our September 2004 and September 2003 surveys. Most Republicans (72%) and nearly half of independents (46%) think good economic times are ahead, but most Democrats (60%) expect bad times. We found regional and gender differences as well. San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles County residents have the most negative economic outlook. And women are more negative than men. Californians’ expectations for the nation are similar to their expectations for the state economy during the next 12 months (47% good times, 39% bad times). “Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months, the United States will have good times financially or bad times?” Good times Bad times Don't know All Adults 48% 43 9 Party Registration Dem 32% 60 8 Rep 72% 22 6 Central Ind Valley 46% 53% 44 40 10 7 Region SF Bay Los Area Angeles 41% 45% 48 47 11 8 Other Southern California 56% 37 7 Likely Voters 48% 43 9 - 13 - National Political Context President’s Ratings President Bush’s overall job approval ratings in California have not changed significantly since his reelection. Today, 46 percent of California adults approve of the way he is handling his job, while 52 percent disapprove. In October 2004, 42 percent approved and 55 percent disapproved of his performance – ratings similar to his approval ratings in August and September 2004. Bush’s approval rating is lower than his first approval rating in our May 2001 survey – 57 percent – and is off sharply from its high point of 79 percent in December 2001. Californians give lower approval ratings to the president than Americans in general, according to surveys in January by CBS News/New York Times (49%) and ABC News/Washington Post (52%). Likely voters’ evaluations of the president are similar to all Californians’ ratings: 45 percent approve; 53 percent disapprove. However, there are sharp partisan differences: 86 percent of Republicans approve and 80 percent of Democrats disapprove of the way Bush is handling his job as president. Independents are more likely to disapprove than approve (57% to 39%). Most San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents disapprove, while most of those in the Central Valley and other Southern California say they approve of the president’s overall performance in office. Whites (48%) and Latinos (51%) give the president similar approval ratings for his overall job performance. President Bush’s ratings on handling the federal budget and taxes are lower, with only 40 percent of Californians approving of his performance and 53 percent disapproving. Among likely voters, 55 percent disapprove. The percentage of all Californians who disapprove has increased 9 points (from 44%) since January 2004. Today, most Republicans approve of the president’s performance on fiscal issues (76%), and most Democrats (78%) and independents (59%) disapprove. The percentages with negative opinions have climbed 10 points among Democrats and 13 points among independents since a year ago. Approval ratings on fiscal issues are similar among Latinos (45%) and whites (41%). On the situation in Iraq, President Bush’s approval ratings have not changed since August 2004: 34 percent approve; 63 percent disapprove. This is a 16-point drop from his 50 percent approval rating in August 2003. Opinions among all adults and likely voters are similar today. Nationwide, 40 percent approve of the president’s actions in Iraq, according to the January 2005 ABC News/Washington Post and the CBS News/New York Times surveys. In California today, approval ratings divide sharply along party lines: 71 percent of Republicans approve but 86 percent of Democrats and 70 percent of independents disapprove. A majority of residents in all regions disapprove of the president’s handling of the situation in Iraq. “Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling …” his job as president of the United States? Approve Disapprove Don't know the federal budget and taxes? Approve Disapprove Don't know the situation in Iraq? Approve Disapprove Don't know All Adults 46% 52 2 40 53 7 34 63 3 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 17% 86% 39% 80 12 57 324 18 76 35 78 18 59 466 12 71 26 86 26 70 234 Likely Voters 45% 53 2 41 55 4 37 61 2 - 14 - National Political Context Second Presidential Term Californians have only modest hopes for President Bush’s second term. Overall, 51 percent agree strongly (31%) or somewhat (20%) that he will be a strong and capable president. However, 45 percent disagree somewhat (10%) or strongly (35%) with that perception. Likely voters have similar views. In our January 2001 survey, as Bush was beginning his first term in office, 54 percent of Californians expected him to be a strong president and 36 percent did not. Republicans are very upbeat about their candidate’s second term: Nine in 10 agree that he will be a strong and capable leader. However, seven in 10 Democrats disagree, 60 percent of them strongly. Independents are divided (48% agree; 50% disagree). By region, more than six in 10 in the Central Valley and Other Southern California think Bush will have an effective second term; 59 percent in the San Francisco Bay Area disagree; and Los Angeles residents are evenly divided, with 49 agreeing and 49 percent disagreeing. Men are more optimistic than women about Bush’s second term (55% to 48%). Confidence in the president relates strongly to his ratings on the Iraq situation and budget and taxes: Of those who approve of his efforts in Iraq, 77 percent strongly agree that he will have an effective second term; of those who like his fiscal policies, 64 percent have high expectations for the next four years. Six in 10 California adults (60%) and likely voters (63%) think the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush to accomplish a lot in the next four years. Californians are less optimistic today than they were in January 2001, when 50 percent thought the country would be divided and 44 percent thought the country would be able to unite behind President Bush and that he would be able to accomplish a lot over the next four years. Again, there are partisan differences: 56 percent of Republicans think the country will unite behind the president, but 75 percent of Democrats and 68 percent of independents think the national rift will persist. Across all party lines, Californians are more likely today than four years ago to think the nation will be divided and that it will be difficult for President Bush to accomplish a lot in office (Democrats: 75% to 68%; Republicans: 39% to 25%; independents: 68% to 55%). “Do you agree or disagree that George W. Bush will be a strong and capable president in his second term?” Strongly agree Somewhat agree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree Don't know All Adults 31% 20 10 35 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 9% 70% 21% 16 19 27 12 3 12 60 8 38 302 Likely Voters 34% 17 8 39 2 “Which of these statements comes closer to your point of view ...?” Country will be able to unite behind President Bush The country will be divided Don't know All Adults 35% 60 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 19% 56% 26% 75 39 68 656 Likely Voters 32% 63 5 - 15 - January 2005 National Political Context Situation in Iraq Californians have grown increasingly negative about the U.S. military effort in Iraq. Today, only three in 10 say things are going very (5%) or somewhat well (25%), while seven in 10 say things are going not too well (26%) or not at all well (43%). The proportion of California adults who say that things are going “not at all well” in Iraq has increased 7 points since August 2004 (36% to 43%) and 24 points since August 2003 (19% to 43%). Opinions about the situation in Iraq differ strongly across political parties. Democrats (64%) and independents (45%) are much more likely than Republicans (11%) to say things are not going at all well. Regionally, San Francisco Bay area residents (56%) are more likely than others to say things are not going at all well in Iraq. Latinos (44%) and whites (40%) are about equally negative about the situation. “In general, how would you say things are going for the U.S. in Iraq— very well, somewhat well, not too well, or not at all well?” Very well Somewhat well Not too well Not at all well Don't know All Adults 5% 25 26 43 1 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 1% 11% 6% 11 49 16 24 27 32 64 11 45 021 Likely Voters 6% 26 26 42 0 As a further sign of pessimism, only three in 10 Californians have at least some confidence that the upcoming Iraqi elections will produce a stable and effective government in that country. Seven in 10 say they are not too confident or not confident at all about the election’s outcome. Californians are more pessimistic than adults nationwide, with 56 percent of Americans expressing a lack of confidence and 42 percent feeling confident, according to a January ABC/Washington Post poll. Many Democrats (50%) and independents (39%) are not confident at all in the Iraqi election outcome, while half of Republicans are very or somewhat confident. San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles residents are more pessimistic than residents of other regions about the Iraqi elections. However, among those who approve of President Bush’s handling of the situation in Iraq, 61 percent are either very or somewhat confident that the elections will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively. “How confident are you that the elections in Iraq will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively?” Very confident Somewhat confident Not too confident Not confident at all Don't know All Adults 5% 26 33 35 1 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 1% 9% 4% 13 42 24 34 33 32 50 15 39 211 Likely Voters 5% 25 31 37 2 - 16 - National Political Context Social Security Reforms Only 29 percent of Californians believe the Bush administration’s claims that the Social Security program is in “crisis.” Forty-two percent agree that the system has major problems but no crisis, and 21 percent think the problems are minor. Nationwide, according to a December 2004 ABC News/Washington Post survey, a similar 25 percent think there is a Social Security crisis, while 49 percent believe there are major problems and 23 percent think there are only minor issues. In California, partisan views of the Social Security issue are similar, with about three in 10 across parties perceiving it as a crisis. Concerns about Social Security decline with age: Among those age 65 and older, only 12 percent think the program is in a crisis, compared to 34 percent of those under age 45. Californians are divided about whether to allow people to invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market – 49 percent of adults and 48 percent of likely voters support such an idea. Public support has declined since the 2000 election (64% in August 2000, 55% in February 2002, and 49% in January 2005). Nationwide, 53 percent support the plan, and 44 percent oppose it, according to a December ABC News/Washington Post survey. There are strong partisan differences about this proposal in California today: 65 percent of Republicans and 51 percent of independents favor it, but 60 percent of Democrats oppose it. The strongest opposition comes from those age 65 and older (63%), while 56 percent of those under age 45 favor the private investment plan. Favor for this Social Security reform also increases with income. Among those who think the program is in crisis, 58 percent favor the private investment plan. Among those who think there are major problems but no crisis, 52 percent support it. Thirty-six percent of Californians said they would invest their own Social Security funds in the stock market, but 60 percent would not. Nationwide, the December ABC/Washington Post survey found a similar 37 percent would invest in stocks, but 62 percent would not. In California, those with incomes above $80,000 are the most likely to say they would put their Social Security funds in the stock market. “Which of the following four statements comes closest to your own view of the Social Security program …” Program is in crisis Program has major problems but is not in crisis Program has minor problems Program has no problems Don't know All Adults 29% 42 21 4 4 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 26% 30% 30% 42 49 41 25 15 23 444 322 18-44 34% 40 19 4 3 Age 45-64 29% 47 19 3 2 65+ 12% 43 32 8 5 “Would you support or oppose a plan in which people who chose to could invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market?” Support Oppose Don't know All Adults 49% 46 5 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 36% 65% 51% 60 31 45 444 18-44 56% 39 5 Age 45-64 46% 49 5 65+ 29% 63 8 - 17 - January 2005 National Political Context Federal Budget and Tax Issues The federal budget deficit is also more likely to be seen as a “major problem” (50%) rather than a “crisis” (29%). However, less than one in five Californians considers it a minor problem or not a problem. Among likely voters, one in three says the budget deficit is a national crisis. Democrats (41%) and independents (34%) are much more likely than Republicans (15%) to call the federal budget deficit a crisis. Perceptions of a crisis are also higher among college graduates (35%) than less-educated residents and among San Francisco Bay Area residents (36%) than those living elsewhere in the state. Among the seven in 10 California adults who describe their state government’s budget gap between spending and revenues as a “big problem,” 36 percent think that the federal budget deficit is a crisis, 49 percent believe it as a major problem, and 13 percent see it as a minor problem or no problem. By a 13-point margin, more Californians oppose (50%) than support (37%) making the 2001 tax cuts permanent. Among likely voters, opinions are similar, with 50 percent opposed and 39 percent in support. Sixty percent of Republicans want the tax cuts implemented in 2001 to be permanent, while 66 percent of Democrats and 56 percent of independents oppose this tax policy. Opposition to making the tax cuts permanent outweighs support in all demographic groups and in all regions except for Other Southern California, which is divided. Support is stronger among those with incomes of $80,000 or more (44%) than among those with less income. Of those who approve of the way President Bush is handling the federal budget and taxes, 59 percent favor and 32 percent oppose making the tax cuts permanent. “Which of these statements best describes the federal budget deficit …” It is in a crisis It is a major problem for the country but is not a crisis It is a minor problem for the country It is not a problem for the country Don't know All Adults 29% 50 15 3 3 Dem 41% Party Registration Rep 15% 47 56 Ind 34% 50 8 25 13 123 320 Likely Voters 33% 51 13 2 1 “As you may know, the 2001 tax cuts are set to expire in 2011. Do you support or oppose making those tax cuts permanent?” Support Oppose Don't know All Adults 37% 50 13 Party Registration Dem Rep Ind 22% 60% 31% 66 29 56 12 11 13 Likely Voters 39% 50 11 - 18 - Survey Methodology The PPIC Statewide Survey is directed by Mark Baldassare, research director and survey director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance in research and writing from Renatta DeFever, Kristy Michaud, and Kim Curry, survey research associates; and Jennifer Paluch, PPIC research associate. The survey was conducted with funding from The James Irvine Foundation and benefited from discussions with Irvine staff and grantees and regional focus groups with voters, funded by the foundation; however, the survey methods, questions, and content of the report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,002 California adult residents interviewed between January 11 and January 18, 2005. Interviewing took place on weekday nights and weekend days, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers that ensured that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in California were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to six times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (age 18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Publication Services translated the survey into Spanish, and Schulman, Ronca & Bucuvalas, Inc. conducted the telephone interviewing. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of California’s adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,002 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all adults in California were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. The sampling error for the 1,613 registered voters is +/- 2.5 percent. The sampling error for the 1,169 likely voters is +/- 3 percent, and the sampling error for each of the half samples is also +/- 3 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. Throughout the report, we refer to four geographic regions. “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. “SF Bay Area” includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. “Los Angeles” refers to Los Angeles County, and “Other Southern California” includes the mostly suburban regions of Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Diego Counties. These four regions were chosen for analysis because they are the major population centers of the state, accounting for approximately 90 percent of the state population. We present specific results for Latinos because they account for about 30 percent of the state’s adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing voter groups. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. We do compare the opinions of registered Democrats, Republicans, and independents. The “independents” category includes only those who are registered to vote as “decline to state.” We compare PPIC Statewide Survey responses to responses recorded in national surveys conducted by ABC News/Washington Post and CBS News/New York Times. We used earlier PPIC Statewide Surveys to analyze trends over time in California. - 19 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY ON THE CALIFORNIA STATE BUDGET JANUARY 11— JANUARY 18, 2005 2,002 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/-2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. Which one issue facing California today do you think is the most important for the governor and state legislature to work on in 2005? [code, don’t read] 22% education, schools 20 state budget, deficit, taxes 15 economy, jobs, unemployment 8 immigration, illegal immigration 5 health care, health costs, HMO reform 2 crime, gangs 2 driver’s licenses for immigrants 17 other (specify) 9 don’t know 2. Do you think things in California are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 46% right direction 41 wrong direction 13 don't know 3. Turning to economic conditions in California, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 47% good times 39 bad times 14 don't know 4. As you may know, the state government has an annual budget of around 110 billion dollars and currently faces a multibillion dollar gap between state spending and state revenue. Do you think that this budget gap is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem for the people of California today? 70% big problem 23 somewhat of a problem 4 not a problem 3 don't know 5. How would you prefer to deal with the state's budget gap – mostly through spending cuts, mostly through tax increases, through a mix of spending cuts and tax increases, or do you think that it is okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit? 34% mostly through spending cuts 11 mostly through tax increases 40 mixture of spending cuts and tax increases 6 okay for the state to borrow money and run a budget deficit 3 other answer (specify) 6 don't know - 21 - 6. In general, do you think the state government could spend less and still provide the same level of services? 64% yes, could spend less [ask q. 6a] 31 no, could not spend less [ask q. 7] 5 don't know [ask q. 7] 6a. How much could the state government cut its spending without reducing services? [read list] 18% under 10 percent 42 10 percent to under 20 percent 15 20 percent to under 30 percent 11 30 percent or more 14 don't know I am going to ask about specific areas where the State of California spends money. Given the budget gap, please tell me if you think that the state government should, in the next fiscal year beginning July 1st, spend more money than it does now, the same amount as now, or less money than now. [rotate questions 7 to 10] 7. How about the state's corrections system, including prisons? 13% more money 36 same amount of money 46 less money 5 don't know 8. How about the K through 12 public education system? 62% more money 27 same amount of money 10 less money 1 don't know 9. How about public colleges and universities? 44% more money 37 same amount of money 16 less money 3 don't know 10. How about health and human services? 47% more money 33 same amount of money 17 less money 3 don't know Tax and fee increases could be used to help reduce the state’s large gap between spending and revenue. For each of the following, please say if you favor or oppose the proposal. [rotate questions 11 to 13] 11. How about raising the top rate of the state income tax paid by the wealthiest Californians? 69% favor 28 oppose 3 don't know 12. How about increasing taxes on the purchase of cigarettes and alcoholic beverages? 74% favor 25 oppose 1 don't know 13. How about raising the state portion of the sales tax? 32% favor 64 oppose 4 don't know 14. In general, which of the following statements do you agree with more – I'd rather pay higher taxes to support a larger state government that provides more services, or I'd rather pay lower taxes and have a smaller state government that provides fewer services? 49% higher taxes and more services 44 lower taxes and fewer services 7 don't know 15. When it comes to the tough choices involved in the state budget, both in deciding how much Californians should pay in taxes and how to fund state programs, whose approach do you most prefer: [rotate] (1) Governor Schwarzenegger's, (2) the Democrats’ in the legislature, [or] (3) the Republicans’ in the legislature? 29% Governor Schwarzenegger's 35 the Democrats' in the legislature 18 the Republicans' in the legislature 4 other answer (specify) 14 don't know 16. When it comes to long-term issues of reforming the state budget process, both in terms of changing the way the state taxes and the state spends money, which approach do you most prefer: [rotate] (1) the governor and legislature should pass new laws [or] (2) the California voters should decide at the ballot box? 27% the governor and legislature should pass new laws 68 the California voters should decide at the ballot box 2 other answer (specify) 3 don't know 17. Overall, do you have a favorable or an unfavorable impression of the plans and policies for California that Governor Schwarzenegger presented in his recent "state of the state" speech? 42% favorable 32 unfavorable 18 haven't heard about the speech (volunteered) 8 don't know 18. Do you approve or disapprove of the governor's plan to call a special session of the state legislature to pass new laws on finance, education, pension, and redistricting reforms? 67% approve 21 disapprove 12 don't know 18a.Governor Schwarzenegger also plans to use the "California Performance Review" report that was completed last year to reorganize state agencies and eliminate unnecessary boards and commissions. Do you think this will help the state's fiscal situation a lot, somewhat, not much, or not at all? 25% a lot 47 somewhat 14 not much 7 not at all 1 haven't heard about it (volunteered) 6 don't know - 22 - 19. Recently, Governor Schwarzenegger proposed a budget plan for the next fiscal year that includes withholding money from K to 12 public education, reducing certain health and human services and general government spending, transferring a portion of the gasoline sales tax away from transportation projects, and using state bonds. The plan includes no new taxes. In general, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the governor’s budget plan? 38% satisfied 55 dissatisfied 7 don't know [rotate questions 20 and 21] 20. Do you think that tax increases should have been included in the governor's budget plan? 49% yes 45 no 6 don't know 21. Overall, how concerned are you about the effects of the spending reductions in the governor's budget plan – very concerned, somewhat concerned, not too concerned, or not at all concerned? 31% very concerned 42 somewhat concerned 15 not too concerned 10 not at all concerned 2 don't know 22. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that the California legislature is handling its job? 37% approve 50 disapprove 13 don't know 23. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that Arnold Schwarzenegger is handling his job as Governor of California? 60% approve 33 disapprove 7 don't know [rotate questions 24 to 28] 24. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of the state budget and taxes? 48% approve 41 disapprove 11 don't know 25. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the state's kindergarten through twelfth grade public education system? 34% approve 51 disapprove 15 don't know 26. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of transportation and traffic congestion? 35% approve 37 disapprove 28 don't know 27. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is reforming California government? 58% approve 30 disapprove 12 don't know 28. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Schwarzenegger is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? 56% approve 32 disapprove 12 don't know 29. Governor Schwarzenegger is considering calling a special election to vote on financial, educational, and governmental reforms. Do you think it is better to have a special election later this year or is it better to wait until the scheduled election of June 2006? 45% better to have a special election [ask q. 29a] 50 better to wait until scheduled election in 2006 [ask q. 30] 5 don't know [ask q. 30] 29a.Would this be true if you knew that special elections cost the state between 50 and 70 million dollars to run? 46% yes 47 no 7 don't know - 23 - January 2005 If Governor Schwarzenegger calls a special election, he may ask the voters to approve the following measures on the state ballot. [rotate questions 30 and 31] 30. A legislative redistricting reform measure that requires an independent panel of three retired judges, instead of the state legislature and governor, to adopt a new redistricting plan. Would you vote yes or no? 44% yes 41 no 15 don't know 31. A limit on the amount of money that the state could spend each year equal to the amount of revenue it receives, which would include across the board cuts when spending grows past revenues. Would you vote yes or no? 59% yes 32 no 9 don't know Spending and tax reforms have been proposed to address issues in the state budget. For each of the following, please say whether you think the proposal is a good idea or a bad idea. [rotate questions 32 and 33] 32. How about replacing the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for voters to pass local special taxes? 43% good idea 50 bad idea 7 don't know 33. How about replacing the two-thirds requirement with a 55 percent majority vote for the state legislature to pass a budget? 45% good idea 47 bad idea 8 don't know 34. At this time, how much of a problem for state and local government budgets is the amount that is being spent on their public employee pension or retirement systems? Is this a big problem, somewhat of a problem or not a problem in California today? 31% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 17 not a problem 11 don't know 35. Would you favor or oppose changing the pension systems for new public employees from defined benefits to a defined contribution system similar to a 401(k) plan? 61% favor 25 oppose 14 don't know 36. How much of the time do you think you can trust the government in Sacramento to do what is right – just about always, most of the time, or only some of the time? 5% just about always 25 most of the time 63 only some of the time 5 none of the time/not at all (volunteered) 2 don't know 37. Do you think things in the United States are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 43% right direction 51 wrong direction 6 don't know 38. Turning to economic conditions, do you think that during the next 12 months the United States will have good times financially or bad times? 48% good times 43 bad times 9 don't know 39. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president of the United States? 46% approve 52 disapprove 2 don't know 40. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the federal budget and taxes? 40% approve 53 disapprove 7 don't know 41. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling the situation in Iraq? 34% approve 63 disapprove 3 don't know - 24 - 42. Do you agree or disagree that George W. Bush will be a strong and capable president in his second term? (if agree or disagree: Is that strongly or somewhat)? 31% strongly agree 20 somewhat agree 10 somewhat disagree 35 strongly disagree 4 don't know 43. Which of these statements comes closer to your point of view: [rotate] (1) the country will be able to unite behind President Bush, who will be able to accomplish a lot in the next four years [or] (2) the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush to accomplish a lot over the next four years? 35% the country will be able to unite behind President Bush 60 the country will be divided and it will be hard for President Bush 5 don't know 44. Which of the following four statements comes closest to your own view of the Social Security program: Would you say the program is in crisis, the program has major problems but is not in crisis, the program has minor problems, or the program has no problems? 29% program is in crisis 42 program has major problems but is not in crisis 21 program has minor problems 4 program has no problems 4 don't know 45. Would you support or oppose a plan in which people who choose to could invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market? 49% support 46 oppose 5 don't know 46. People in a plan like this would get: [rotate] (1) higher Social Security benefits if the stock market went up but (2) lower Social Security benefits if the stock market went down. Knowing that, would you personally put some of your Social Security money in the stock market or not? 36% yes 60 no 1 other (specify) 3 don't know 47. As you may know, the 2001 tax cuts are set to expire in 2011. Do you support or oppose making those tax cuts permanent? 37% support 50 oppose 13 don't know 48. Which of these statements do you think best describes the federal budget deficit: It is a crisis, it is a major problem for the country but not a crisis, it is a minor problem for the country, or it is not a problem for the country at all? 29% it is a crisis 50 it is a major problem for the country but not a crisis 15 it is a minor problem for the country 3 it is not a problem for the country at all 3 don't know 49. In general, how would you say things are going for the U.S. in Iraq – very well, somewhat well, not too well, or not at all well? 5% very well 25 somewhat well 26 not too well 43 not at all well 1 don't know 50. As you may know, elections for a new national government in Iraq are scheduled for late January. How confident are you that these elections will produce a stable government that can rule Iraq effectively – very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident, or not confident at all? 5% very confident 26 somewhat confident 33 not too confident 35 not confident at all 1 don't know 51. How much of the time do you think you can trust the government in Washington to do what is right – just about always, most of the time, or only some of the time? 6% just about always 26 most of the time 59 only some of the time 7 none of the time/not at all (volunteered) 2 don't know - 25 - January 2005 52. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote? 81% yes [ask q. 53] 19 no [skip to q. 54] 53. Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent? 43% Democrat [ask q. 53b] 35 Republican [ask q. 53c] 4 another party (specify) [skip to q. 54] 18 independent [ask q. 53a] 53a.Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican Party or Democratic Party? 27% Republican party 43 Democratic party 21 neither 9 don’t know [go to q. 54] 53b. Would you call yourself a strong Democrat or not a very strong Democrat? 55% strong 43 not very strong 2 don’t know [go to q. 54] 53c. Would you call yourself a strong Republican or not a very strong Republican? 63% strong 35 not very strong 2 don’t know 54. Generally speaking, how much interest would you say you have in politics – a great deal, a fair amount, only a little, or none? 28% great deal 43 fair amount 24 only a little 5 none 55. How often would you say you vote – always, nearly always, part of the time, seldom, or never? 60% always 17 nearly always 6 part of the time 3 seldom 14 never 56. Would you consider yourself to be politically … [rotate] 9% very liberal 22 somewhat liberal 29 middle-of-the-road 25 somewhat conservative 11 very conservative 4 don't know [57-67: demographic questions] - 26 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Angela Blackwell Founder and CEO PolicyLink Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley James E. Canales President The James Irvine Foundation Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Dennis A. Hunt Vice President Communications and Public Affairs The California Endowment Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Carol S. Larson President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Monica Lozano Publisher and CEO La Opinión Donna Lucas Deputy Chief of Staff Office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Max Neiman Professor Political Science Department University of California, Riverside Mark Paul Deputy Treasurer California Treasurer Phil Angelides Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board Emeritus The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center - 27 - PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA Board of Directors Cheryl White Mason, Chair Chief, Civil Liability Management Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office Edward K. Hamilton Chairman Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Alschuler, Inc. Gary K. Hart Founder Institute for Education Reform California State University, Sacramento Walter B. Hewlett Director Center for Computer Assisted Research in the Humanities David W. Lyon President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Arjay Miller Dean Emeritus Graduate School of Business Stanford University Ki Suh Park Design and Managing Partner Gruen Associates Constance L. Rice Co-Director The Advancement Project Thomas C. Sutton Chairman & CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board Emeritus The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center Advisory Council Mary C. Daly Research Advisor Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco Clifford W. Graves General Manager Department of Community Development City of Los Angeles Elizabeth G. Hill Legislative Analyst State of California Hilary W. Hoynes Associate Professor Department of Economics University of California, Davis Andrés E. Jiménez Director California Policy Research Center University of California Office of the President Norman R. King Executive Director San Bernardino Associated Governments Daniel A. Mazmanian C. Erwin and Ione Piper Dean and Professor School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Dean Misczynski Director California Research Bureau Rudolf Nothenberg Chief Administrative Officer (Retired) City and County of San Francisco Manuel Pastor Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies University of California, Santa Cruz Peter Schrag Contributing Editor The Sacramento Bee James P. Smith Senior Economist RAND Corporation PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 San Francisco, California 94111 Phone: (415) 291-4400 Fax: (415) 291-4401 www.ppic.org info@ppic.org" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:37:46" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(8) "s_105mbs" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:37:46" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:37:46" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["guid"]=> string(50) "http://148.62.4.17/wp-content/uploads/S_105MBS.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) }