Did the results of the special election on the budget propositions really show that the public is against taxes and government, as the Republicans claim? Recent polling looked at the reasons the propositions failed. Polls are a useful way to understand what people really thing because they take a scientific sample, actually asking the voters what they think, instead of just repeating something that Republicans just say. Let’s see what the voters give as their reasons for opposing the propositions. From the polling:
- 74% of voters polled thought the election was just a gimmick, not an actual fix for California’s budget problems.
- 70% of the voters polled said the legislature is a captive of special interests (possibly because people are learning that the “budget deal” that they came up with in the middle of this emergency included a huge tax cut for large, multi-state corporations.)
- In a budget battle dominated by Republican demands for spending cuts instead of asking the rich and corporations to pay their fair share only 19% of voters polled said that Californians are being asked to share the pain equally.
- And to drive that point home, only 29% of voters polled said that the budget should be balanced only with spending cuts. According to the polling “even among ‘No’ voters, less than half (46%) say the government should rely entirely on spending cuts with no tax increases.”
In summary, voters resented that the legislature is held captive by the 2/3 rule, and want them to address that instead of coming up with short-term gimmicks to get through another year while making things even worse later.
Additionally, and completely contrary to anti-tax and anti-government claims, the polling showed “broad support for new revenue streams.” According to the polling report, the public supports: