CAPPS - Avocacy and Communication Professional Development

California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools

Gov. Brown’s tax measure ahead in poll, but trouble looms

08/23/2012

San Francisco Chronicle - August 22, 2012

Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax-raising Proposition 30 is in positive but shaky territory while a rival tax measure, Proposition 38, is losing by a significant margin, according to a poll released Wednesday by the Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE)/USC Rossier School of Education.

You can look at the poll here.

The poll found that among likely registered voters, 55 percent of those surveyed are in support of Prop. 30 while 36 percent oppose it. For Prop. 38, 40 percent of those surveyed support it while 49 percent are in opposition.

It’s clearly bad news for backers of Prop. 38, which has been funded almost entirely by wealth civil rights attorney Molly Munger, but the governor should be concerned as well, said Dan Schnur, the director of the poll and director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at USC.

That’s because the poll found the governor’s measure is quite vulnerable to arguments already being used by opponents, namely that leaders in Sacramento have been irresponsible with tax money by approving high speed rail, giving raises to some staffers in the Legislature and by not knowing about the millions of dollars hidden by the state parks department.

Respondents watched an ad made by the pro-Prop. 30 team and then played a radio ad made by opponents. After watching and listening to both, the support for Prop. 30 dropped by three percentage points.

“The governor and his allies are almost certainly going to need to do something to change the trajectory to ensure its passage,” Schnur said.

But the governor said that he is not overly concerned about that.

“Any time you have a proposition, there will be all sorts of issues that will be raised,” Brown said after a campaign event outside James Lick Middle School in San Francisco’s Noe Valley neighborhood.

“I see great opportunity in this measure, and the polls are showing that over 50 percent of the people support Proposition 30. There are other measures on the ballot, there are lots of arguments, people are pointing out that government is not perfect, and has flaws, but at the end of the day, there’s only one question: What is going to help the kids of California more— that the most prosperous people give back a little for seven years, or not, and we cut our schools and all the rest of that stuff?”

The poll was an online survey of 1,041 likely registered California voters conducted from Aug. 3 to Aug. 7. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.