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Election 2012

Propositions 30 and 38: Field Poll Says Support Has Dropped For Tax Measures

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Fri, Nov 2, 2012 at 7:00 AM

click to enlarge Gov. Jerry Brown - RANDALL BENTON
  • Randall Benton
  • Gov. Jerry Brown
The Field Poll released its latest report on Thursday, and it's looking bad for both Governor Jerry Brown's Proposition 30 and civil rights attorney Molly Munger's Proposition 38 -- especially Prop. 38.

With less than a week until Election Day on Nov. 6, according to the Field Poll, likely voters supporting Proposition 30 has dropped to 48 percent -- below the majority needed to pass the proposed tax hike which Brown seeks to use to plug the state's multi-billion-dollar budget deficit.

Things are worse for Proposition 38, another tax hike that Munger wants to use to increase funding for California's K-12 public schools. Support for that has fallen to 34 percent.

In mid-September, the Field Poll found that 41 percent of likely voters supported Proposition 38. Munger has spent over $30 million of her own money to push for the passage of the ballot measure, which L.A. Weekly wrote about in an October feature story.

Seventeen percent of likely voters are undecided about Proposition 38, according to the Field Poll. Interestingly, there's been a 10 percent decrease of voters who plan to support both propositions 30 and 38 -- from 35 percent in September to 25 percent today.

The Field Poll, which talked with 1,566 California voters, found that "supporters [of Proposition 30] tend to approve the job Brown is doing, believe the amount they pay in state taxes is about right, and are very concerned about the potential impact of the automatic spending cuts that would be imposed if voters reject Prop. 30."

In addition, "Opponents are more likely to disapprove of the governor's performance, believe they pay too much in state taxes, are less concerned about spending cuts and think the state can provide roughly the same level of services even if it had to reduce its budget by $6 billion, the approximate amount of Prop. 30's proposed tax increase."

The Field Poll did not go into the particulars of why voters have turned on Proposition 38.

If Proposition 30 fails, "trigger cuts" will automatically go into effect and state funding for schools will drop dramatically. The other day, Pasadena Unified School District board member Ed Honowitz wrote in a Weekly blog post that if both propositions 30 and 38 go down in defeat, public schools will drop off a "fiscal cliff."

Contact Patrick Range McDonald at pmcdonald@laweekly.com.

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