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For Immediate Release August 2, 2012

California Business Roundtable and Pepperdine University Release Statewide Initiative Survey Results

Support for Proposition 34 plummets

The California Business Roundtable and Pepperdine University School of Public Policy today released the second round of results in their bi-monthly initiative survey series leading up to the November election showing some major movement due to recent events and the release of ballot labels and arguments.

"This is the first time that a poll tested the entire ballot and the actual ballot labels voters will see when they cast their vote, and included ballot arguments and rebuttals as posted by the Secretary of State. in our first poll, voters viewed the Title and Summary before ballot arguments and ballot labels were released by the Attorney General," said Rob Lapsley, President of the California Business Roundtable. "

"Events of the past two weeks may have shaped some of the changes we see in this week's results. For example, support for Prop 34, which would repeal California's death penalty, fell from 45.5% to 35.9%. While you can't be completely certain, the major decline in support for Prop 34 likely reflects a public response to the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado," said Dr. Michael Shires associate professor at Pepperdine University. "For many Californians, life in prison would not be severe enough for such a terrible crime."

After voters viewed the ballot label they'll see when casting their vote, Proposition 31 showed big movement, most likely due to voter interpretation of the ballot label compared with the title and summary tested in the last poll. Support drops from 51% to 40.7% and unsure voters increase from 15.5% to 24.9%.

"It's clear that after voters have the opportunity to thoughtfully consider the ballot label and ballot arguments it changes their interpretation and support or opposition for a measure," said Dr. Chris Condon, M4 Research. "For example, once voters viewed the title and summary for Proposition 31, support drops from 51% to 40.7% and unsure voters increase from 15.5% to 24.9%. We look forward to seeing how the campaigns affect support moving forward."

Topline results found:

Proposition 30 (Temporary Taxes to Fund Education. Guaranteed Local Public Safety Funding. Initiative Constitutional Amendment)

YES: 52.5

NO: 42.2

Proposition 31 (State Budget. State and Local Government. Initiative Constitutional Amendment and Statute.)

YES: 40.7

NO: 34.4

Proposition 32 (Prohibits Political Contributions by Payroll Deduction. Prohibitions on Contributions to Candidates. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 62.7

NO: 28.2

Proposition 33 (Changes Law to Allow Auto Insurance Companies to Set Prices Based on a Driver's History of Insurance Coverage. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 60.9

NO: 24.9

Proposition 34 (Death Penalty Repeal. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 35.9

NO: 55.7

Proposition 35 (Human Trafficking. Penalties. Sex Offender Registration. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 83.6

NO: 9.2

Proposition 36 (Three Strikes Law. Sentencing for Repeat Felony Offenders. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 77.9

NO: 15.5

Proposition 37 (Genetically Engineered Foods. Mandatory Labeling. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 69.4

NO: 21.8

Proposition 38 (Tax for Education and Early Childhood Programs. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 42.4

NO: 47.7

Proposition 39 (Tax Treatment for Multistate Businesses. Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Funding. Initiative Statute.)

YES: 61.7

NO: 27.1

Proposition 40 (Redistricting. State Senate Districts. Referendum.)

YES: 45.3

NO: 25.1

Full results are available here.

To take the online survey, click here.

About the methodology: M4 Strategies conducted an online opinion poll of 873 likely California General Election voters from July 30 to August 1, 2012. The margin of error was 3.3%. Using M4 Strategies Ballot Mirroring approach, voters were able to read and consider the official ballot labels for all 11 propositions on a single web page when voting. This methadology is intended to simulate the context in which voters are able to read and consider all prospective initiatives before voting by mail or at the polls on Election Day.

In addition, the Ballot Mirroring methodology enables survey participants, if they choose, to open and view a replica of the resources made available by the Secretary of State in the state Voter Guide, including the the Quick-Refence Guide, Title and Summaries, Analysis by the Legislative Analysis and argument for and against each opposition. The survey can be viewed here. To receive future releases of the poll please sign up here.


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