Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, in conjunction with American Viewpoint, conducted this survey on behalf of the University of Southern California Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciencesand theLos Angeles Times. The latest poll shows:
- Voters give California lawmakers higher marks despite scandals
- Corruption in Sacramento is a "few bad apples," not systemic breakdown, voters say
- Jerry Brown leads, GOP foes in dead heat for No. 2 in primary
- In Race to Challenge Calif. Gov. Jerry Brown, Republican Contenders in Dead Heat
- Poll finds little support for drought spending despite broad awareness
- CA voters see drought as major crisis — but with little effect on daily lives
- Beneath Jerry Brown's high ratings, voters have reservations
California’s primary election is in the books and the focus now shifts to the general election in November. The most recent University of Southern California Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and Los Angeles Times statewide poll, conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner (researchers were Drew Lieberman and Scott Tiell) and American Viewpoint, addresses Governor Brown’s standing and several key issues facing the state.
Key findings from this new poll include:
Governor Brown’s standing remains at peak levels and he is well-positioned for reelection. Brown’s approval rating is in the mid-50s for the second straight poll after months hovering around 50 percent. Additionally, while only 37 percent of California voters believe the state is headed in the right direction, compared to 46 percent who believe the state is headed on the wrong track, that “wrong track” number is the lowest ever in our tracking of this question, which began in 2009. And Brown’s approval on “the economy and jobs” has increased by 5 points in recent months.
The result is a general election matchup in which Brown leads Neel Kashkari 53 to 35 percent among likely voters, including 83 percent of likely registered Democrats and 69 percent of likely no-party-preference voters. In comparison to Brown’s 2010 performance against Meg Whitman among key groups using exit polls, Brown is performing better among whites, women and seniors.
Voters are concerned about corruption, but stop short of issuing a vote of no confidence in state government. Recent scandals involving several state legislators have helped bring corruption to the forefront -- fully 84 percent of voters are very or somewhat concerned about corruption in the state legislature. However, more than two-thirds (68 percent) believe the problem is just “a few bad apples,” not the entire system, and they give the state legislature its highest approval in five years.
Despite general concerns about drought, Californians are not yet ready to spend taxpayer funds to improve water supplies and systems. Voters have a 30,000-foot concern about drought – 89 percent say the drought is a crisis or a major problem – but just 16 percent say the drought has had a major impact on their daily lives. This perceived “distance” between the problem and people’s everyday lives leads voters to support long-term voluntary measures to address the problem, but not yet costly, prescriptive solutions like increasing water rates, imposing mandatory reductions in water use, or improving storage and delivery systems.
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, in conjunction with American Viewpoint, conducted this survey on behalf of the University of Southern California Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and the Los Angeles Times.
These findings are based on a random sample survey of 1,511 (1,511 weighted) registered voters in the state of California, conducted from May 21 – 28, 2014. Interviews were conducted by telephone using live interviewers from Interviewing Services of America. Voters were randomly selected from a list of registered voters statewide and reached on a landline or cell phone depending on the number they designated on their voter registration. Forty percent of this sample was reached on a cell phone. Up to five attempts were made to reach and interview each randomly selected voter.
The study includes an oversample of 400 known-Latino registered voters, with the total number of Latino voters interviewed at 496 (348 weighted). All interviews among known Latinos were carried out via telephone by bilingual Latino interviewers, and conducted in the preferred language of the survey respondent, English or Spanish. Overall, 35 percent of interviews among the known Latino sample were conducted in Spanish and 65 percent in English. The technique of using fully bilingual interviewers yields higher response and cooperation rates and is greatly preferred because it does not terminate calls with Spanish-language households and require a callback.
The study also includes a subset of likely primary election voters. In this study, “likely voters” represent someone who has voted in at least one of the last two primary elections in California (2010 or 2012) and reports being “almost certain” to vote in a vote intention question (Q.9), or someone who reports having already voted.
Upon completion of all interviewing, the results were weighted to bring the Latino oversample population into line with the racial and ethnic composition of registered voters in California. The data were weighted to reflect the total population of registered voters throughout the state, balancing on regional and demographic characteristics for gender, age, race, and party registration according to known census estimates and voter file projections.
The maximum sampling error for the overall sample of 1,511 registered voters is +/- 2.9 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. Margin of error for subgroups is higher. The margin of error for Latinos is +/- 4.7 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. The margin of error for likely voters is +/- 4.4 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.