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DaveT Donating Member (447 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 04:18 PM
Original message
California Poll Shows Rejection of GOP on Taxes
Edited on Sun Apr-24-11 04:30 PM by DaveT

Times/USC Dornsife poll: Californians support tax hikes to help close budget gap

By Evan Halper, Los Angeles Times

April 23, 2011, 4:15 p.m.

Reporting from Sacramento California voters agree with Gov. Jerry Brown that tax increases should help close the state budget deficit, and they want to vote on his plan for raising the revenue, according to a new Times/USC Dornsife poll.

The Democratic governor has been traveling the state to tout his proposal for a balance of spending reductions and tax increases since it stalled in the Legislature last month amid a bitter battle with Republicans. He had wanted an election in June on a renewal of several tax increases that will have expired by July 1, but he now hopes for a vote in the fall.

Sixty percent of those surveyed, including majorities of both Democrats and Republicans, said they back such an election. The alternative being pushed by most GOP lawmakers forgoing an election and balancing the budget by cutting more from state services was supported by just 33%.

Polling always fascinates me, even as I take a dim view of the psuedo-science that supposedly attests to its validity. The most significant of many objections I have to polling is the question of whether the interaction with respondents measures a preexisting opinion or creates a response on the spot to something the subject has never before seriously considered. This objection goes far beyond the obvious truism that the phrasing of poll questions can determine the result -- Do you favor surrender to the terrorists or do you favor strong action to reduce the threat of terrorism?

No, even assuming integrity and honest curiousity by the pollster, you can never know how much if any thought the respondent has given to the issues being surveyed. The closer you get to election day, the more likely it is that your subject will actually have an opinion regarding her vote. But when you conduct a poll like this one, you have no way of knowing whether the poll is creating the response.

In answer to this complaint, you will see many polls that seek to measure initial reactions, and then proceed to "inform" the respondent of the facts surrounding the query before asking the question again. Often this leads to a significant change in the percentages. I take the pollsters as being sincere when they go through this drill, even as it seems to me to call their whole project into serious question.

Thus today's polling story in the Times reports:

Support for the cuts-only approach dropped to 25% when voters were informed that it would probably require reductions in school funding, according to the survey conducted for The Times and the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.


Nearly half thought the budget had grown in that period, with more than 1 in 4 saying it was "much bigger." In fact, general fund spending went from $103 billion in the 2007-08 budget year to $92.2 billion in the current year.

The artcle quotes several experts in support of its main thrust that Governor Brown is winning the public over to the idea of raising taxes. In contrast to a similar poll taken by the same organization just five months ago when a strong plurality favored spending cuts without tax increases, these results show that a strong majority supports increased taxation to avoid further cuts to education and even social welfare spending.

I believe that these poll results fit with the pattern of other national surveys indicating a rejection of Teabag nonsense. I seriously doubt that very many folks even yet understand the nuances of budget math, economic growth or the costs of entitlements. But what everybody has heard about -- inspite of desultory coverage in the Main Stream Media -- is that the 2011 GOP has launched an unprecendented political attack on the social compact. And these polls, along with the recall petition campaigns in Wisconsin and the ongoing campaigns of resistance in several other Teabag state capitals, demonstrate a visceral rejection of this attack.

For the last several decades, California has led the nation politically and socially. Reaganism and Howard Jarvis' philosophy took root here first, before it spread to the rest of the country. In the new century, we are now the bluest state -- and Governor Moonbeam is buidling the political consensus to reject the anti-tax bullshit that has bankrupted our governments and devastated our social fabric.

Teabag shit is just too weird and it is trashing the GOP brand.
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 04:25 PM
Response to Original message
1. May it stay that way. Nt
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Mojeoux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
2. It was born here, let it die here!!!
I remember when the loss of funding caused by prop 13, closed the advanced educational "3 grades together" section of my daughter's school.
This was advanced method as well as a return to the best aspects of the small little red schoolhouse era.

All the system needed here was just the funding to keep on the heat and the lights in the dome building. The system itself, was not costly and it generated a lot more volunteer involvement with parents and grandparents.
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calimary Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 03:52 AM
Response to Reply #2
11. I remember that, too.
That was the beginning of the end. howard jarvis. Created a frickin' MONSTER. Pennywise/pound-foolish. Paved the way for frickin' reagan. Thanks for NOTHING, howard!
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 04:58 PM
Response to Original message
3. When you have a revenue shortage, you have to RAISE revenue.. pretty simple
Edited on Sun Apr-24-11 04:59 PM by SoCalDem
Only a naive person can believe that you can still have what you need, on less and less money.. Try that in a family budget, and you'll be living in your car..if you can still keep the car..

It sucks to have to pay more, but sometimes you just have to.. The secret is to balance things so that once the crisis is past, you can then settle into a rational method of maintaining things so you don't have to ping-pong from crisis to crisis..
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taught_me_patience Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 05:03 PM
Response to Original message
4. I suppport the public vote but not higher taxes
I believe we are taxed enough here in California and the tax increases will hurt the middle class. I think there should be a serious effort to enact pension reform for public employees before raising taxes on the middle class.
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DBoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 05:07 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. CA taxes are about average for large states
In line with New York, Illinois, Florida, etc.

Personal income taxes are high.

"Thanks" to prop 13, property taxes are low, and are incredibly low for long term property owners (including landholding corporations). For an equivalently valued property, a CA owner pays far less than someone in Texas.

Some corporate taxes that other states levy are not levied in CA. For example, we are the only major oil producing state without an oil severance tax. (which Texas, Alaska, Wyoming and others levy)

The republicans in the state legislature in fact lowered corporate taxes for the largest CA based corporation, despite a massive revenue shortfall. It was their hostage-taking for consenting to passing any sort of budget.
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taught_me_patience Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 05:11 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. I'm not a long term property owner
My wife and I pay very high income tax rates, sales taxes, and property taxes here in the state. It's seriously getting painful to live in this state.
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DaveT Donating Member (447 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 06:21 PM
Response to Reply #4
8. What kind of "reform" do you have in mind?
And how much money do you believe is going to public employee pensions?
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taught_me_patience Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 11:59 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Eliminate the pensions
and replace with a 401k, just like the private sector.
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diane in sf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 03:18 AM
Response to Reply #4
10. Pension payments are not the problem, the rich and corporations are not paying their fair share.
Corporations used to pay around 30% of taxes in CA, now they pay substantially less and the burden has fallen on the poor and middle class.
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Turbineguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-24-11 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
6. The GOP stuck it to
Schwarzenegger and helped get Brown elected.
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Enthusiast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 04:44 AM
Response to Original message
12. I have a suspicion.
I suspect if the rest of the nation had fair and verifiable elections we would find a nationwide sentiment much more closely resembling that of California, except in the old Confederacy of course.

That is why the new GOP governors are so desperately enacting voter suppression measures.
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