Poll: Bush beats Dean in California

Discussion in 'Politics' started by MtnBiker, Jan 13, 2004.

  1. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    President pulls over 50% of vote in hypothetical contest

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Posted: January 13, 2004
    5:00 p.m. Eastern

    President Bush, who soundly lost California and its 54 electoral votes to Al Gore in 2000, would win a hypothetical matchup with Democrat Howard Dean in the Golden State, a new poll reveals.

    The survey, conducted by Probolsky Research, finds Bush winning a majority of votes, or 50.9 percent. Dean garnered 35.4 percent, while 3.7 percent of respondents would choose a candidate other than Bush or Dean. Ten percent said they were not sure.

    Bush does better with men than women voters, with 55.3 percent of those polled choosing to re-elect the president. Dean took in 33 percent of the men surveyed. Of the women polled, Bush received 46.8 percent of the vote, while Dean was favored by 38.5 percent.

    Conducted in both English and Spanish, the poll included the responses of 625 Californians and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

    Gore beat Bush in California in 2000, 53.5 percent to 41.7 percent. The state's party registration favors Democrats, who make up 43.6 percent of voters compared to 35.3 percent who are Republicans. Sixteen percent of voters in California decline to state a party affiliation.



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    Probolsky link

    Bush won without California in 2000 and could win again in 2004 without California, but the democrat nominee cannot.
     
  2. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Very interesting. However, I'd call it a very small sample (only 635 people) and a few months early. However, I think that the California Dems should still take note. It is not necessarily a given that their electoral votes will go to the Democrat.
     
  3. acludem
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    acludem VIP Member

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    Dean hasn't even won the nomination yet, and if he does he'll still likely win California. I don't trust polls because they are so easily twisted...you can get whatever results you want if you ask the questions the right way.
     
  4. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    Yeah I don't put much stock into that poll as well, be it is interesting. When Arnold was elected I didn't really believe that would cause much difference in the presidental election, but that might change.
     
  5. wonderwench
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    I suspect that Bush is benefiting from the halo effect of Arnold's recent inauguration as governor.

    But, boy howdy, I do hope this is a sign that CA Rule by Career Dem Pols is coming to an end.

    Gray Davis was the absolute epitome of someone who should not be governor. Also, Dean is running as an Angry Man Full of Hate. Californians don't dig that (except for the Moveon freaks).
     
  6. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    How many of those freaks are there in California? I would think Hollywood is full of them.
     
  7. wonderwench
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    Arnold wouldn't have won by a landslide if all of us were like that. The majority of Californians are just regular folks. We go about our private business, working, taking care of families, etc.

    Sadly, the political debate is driven by the fringes. Given that they usually don't work fulltime, they have the leisure to protest in Sacramento ad nauseum.
     
  8. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    Good point Wonderwench, I hope the career dems are becoming less prodominate in California as well.
     
  9. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    State poll finds rise in Bush's popularity
    2-year decline ends as California's economy improves

    John Wildermuth, Chronicle Political Writer Wednesday, January 14, 2004

    California's improving economy has given President Bush a boost among the state's Democrats and ended a ratings skid that has gone on for nearly two years, according to a Field Poll released today.

    The survey of 400 registered California voters found that 52 percent approve of the job Bush has done as president, and 42 percent are unhappy with his performance. That's an improvement in his rating from a poll conducted last September, which showed 46 percent approving of the president's efforts and 48 percent in the disapproval column.

    The recent positive feelings toward Bush's overall job performance are fueled in part by increasing support among California voters for his efforts on the economy and in Iraq.

    The poll provides some warning signs for the president's prospects in California, particularly an increasing number of female voters who say the war in Iraq isn't worth the toll in American lives and government costs.

    Still, a rising stock market, combined with a growing feeling that the worst of the state's financial hard times have past, translates into good news for the president, said Mark DiCamillo, director of the Field Poll.

    "Traditionally, the economy is the biggest single influence on the re- election process,'' DiCamillo said. "Unless there's a major change on some other issue between now and November, it's likely to stay that way this year.''

    Californians are split almost equally on Bush's handling of the economy: 49 percent are pleased with the job he's doing, and 46 percent are disappointed with his performance. That's a big change from just four months ago, when 55 percent were unhappy with the president's fiscal efforts.

    Surprisingly, California's Democrats get the credit for Bush's improved fortunes in the state. While Republican approval of the president was virtually unchanged at 82 percent, 29 percent of Democrats now back Bush's performance in office. That's up from 19 percent last September and is the most support Bush has shown among Democrats since September 2002.

    "Democrats seem to have moderated their criticism of the president,'' DiCamillo said. "They're still not supporting Bush, but they're taking a less critical view of him.''

    But even with that Democratic bump, the poll is a graphic reminder of how Bush's presidency continues to split California along gender, geographic and partisan lines.

    On issue after issue, for example, women strongly oppose Bush's policies, dramatically differing from the men in the same survey.

    While California's voters are split almost equally when asked whether Bush did the right thing when he declared war on Iraq, the question turns the gender gap into a chasm.

    By a 57 percent to 40 percent margin, men say Bush's decision was the correct one. But most women see the war as a mistake: Only 42 percent back the president, while 54 percent call the decision to invade Iraq the wrong choice.

    The gender differences were even more glaring when voters were asked whether the war in Iraq was worth the toll it has taken in American lives.

    Among men, 54 percent said the war and its result was more important than its cost to the country and its troops. Only a third of California's women agreed.

    While women traditionally are more reluctant than men to back the use of military force, the poll showed that female voters have other concerns with Bush.

    While 61 percent of the men surveyed believe Bush is doing a good job overall, only 43 percent of the women agreed. On the economy, 58 percent of the men back the president's fiscal program, compared with 40 percent of the women. And when voters were asked whether the country is generally headed in the right direction, 56 percent of California men agreed, but only 38 percent of the women surveyed were optimistic about the country's future.

    Part of the growing split represents a very different view of the state's economy, DiCamillo said.

    "When the state goes through economic hard times, women are more likely to be affected,'' he said. "Single mothers and other women are more likely to be at the bottom of the economic ladder,'' where improvements in the economy are slowest to take effect.

    For the past decade, Democrats in California have taken advantage of the gender gap, parlaying their support from female voters into statewide election victories.

    Regional differences in the state's economic recovery, along with California's partisan tilt, also show up in the survey.

    While 49 percent of the state's voters back Bush's handling of the economy, it's a very different story in the Bay Area, where only 33 percent support the president's efforts.

    The Bay Area is California's most reliably Democratic region, but that doesn't account for all the dissatisfaction, DiCamillo said.

    "Bay Area residents have a very negative perception of the economy; they don't believe it's getting stronger,'' he said. "Economists now believe the Bay Area is likely to be the caboose of this particular recession, rather than the locomotive pulling the rest of the state out.''

    Bush's numbers could take a beating between now and the March primary election, with a horde of Democratic presidential candidates rolling through the state and taking potshots at the president and his policies. But the president's rising poll numbers, along with the October election of Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger in the recall election for governor, raises GOP hopes of improving on their showing in the 2000 presidential race, when Democrat Al Gore easily defeated Bush in California, 54 percent to 42 percent.

    The poll is based on a telephone survey of 400 registered voters, taken from Jan. 5 to Jan. 9. The poll's margin of error is plus or minus 5 percentage points.



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