Survey shows deep GOP stresses

Californians have deeply mixed views about the major political parties, with fewer than one in four viewing the GOP favorably and about half giving Democrats a thumbs up, according to the latest survey by the Public Policy Institute of California.

About 49 percent of all adults reported a favorable impression of the Democratic party, while only 23 percent have a favorable view of the Republicans, down about 7 points since December.

Among Republicans, only 38 percent viewed their own party favorably – a dramatic decline from 74 percent six months ago.

Only about four out of every 10 likely voters are satisfied with their choice of presidential candidates, a 15-point drop since May 2012, the survey reported.

“As the presidential primary season comes to a close, the Republican Party’s favorability rating has declined while the Democratic Party’s favorability rating has held steady. Particularly noteworthy is the big disconnect on immigration policy between Californians and the Republican front runner,” said PPIC’s Mark Baldassare.

When zeroing in on party members, three out for four Democrats said they view their own party favorably, while among Republicans that figure was only 38 percent – a dramatic decline from the 74 percent favorability view six months ago.

Majorities of each racial/ethnic group surveyed reported an unfavorable impression of the Republican Party (87% black, 69% Asian, 69% Latino, 69% white).

“While most Democrats (53%) today are satisfied, just over a third of Republicans (36%) and independents (35%) are. Satisfaction among Republican likely voters has fallen each month since the survey began asking this question in December 2015,” the PPIC reported.

The survey on landline and cell phones was conducted May 13 through May 22 of 1,704 adults. The margin of error was a minimum of plus- or minus-3.3 percent.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders are in a tight race in California’s June 7 Democratic primary, with Clinton at 46% and Sanders at 44%, well within the margin of error. Among registered Democrats, Clinton has an eight-point lead – 49% to 41%, according to the survey.

On the Republican side, about two-thirds of GOP voters said they favored New York businessman Donald Trump, who already has amassed sufficient delegates to be nominated at the Republicans’ national convention this summer in Cleveland.

In the top-two U.S. Senate race to replace departing incumbent Barbara Boxer, nearly a third of the electorate is undecided with the primary just weeks away.

Among Democrats, state Attorney General Kamala Harris leads Rep. Loretta Sanchez, 27% to 19%. Republicans Tom Del Beccaro had 8%, Ron Unz 6% and Duf Sundheim 3%.

Among Democratic likely voters, Harris leads Sanchez (43% to 32%), with 19 percent undecided. Among Republicans, nearly half (46%) are undecided, as are 35 percent of independents. Latino voters are most likely to support Sanchez (48%), though 19 percent favor Harris. White voters are the most likely to be undecided (36%) or support Harris (24%).


Want to see more stories like this? Sign up for The Roundup, the free daily newsletter about California politics from the editors of Capitol Weekly. Stay up to date on the news you need to know.

Sign up below, then look for a confirmation email in your inbox.


Support for Capitol Weekly is Provided by: