SurveyUSA: Prop 19 Responsible For Boxer’s Lead

This week will bring a lot of new polling on the November 2 statewide election, and it begins with SurveyUSA:


Brown: 47%

Whitman: 40%

Undecided: 5%

SurveyUSA says this is the lowest level of support for Whitman since July, but also that among those who have returned their ballots, the spread is much closer (likely because conservatives tend to vote earliest).

Their numbers on the Senate race show a closer contest:

US Senate

Boxer: 46%

Fiorina: 44%

Undecided: 4%

What SurveyUSA found regarding this race was very interesting: that not only are Democrats more motivated to vote in this election, but that Boxer is benefiting from a Prop 19 effect:

In California, the opposite. Uniquely motivated 2010 voters are more Democratic, turning a 4-point Democratic advantage among habitual voters in the race for Governor into the 7-point Democratic advantage that SurveyUSA reports here; turning a 2-point Democratic advantage among habitual voters in the Lieutenant Governor’s contest into the 6-point Democratic advantage SurveyUSA reports here, and turning a 2-point advantage for “Yes” on marijuana into the 4-point “Yes” advantage that SurveyUSA reports here. But in the Senate contest: the incumbent Democrat trails by 4 points among habitual voters, and nominally leads by the 2 points that SurveyUSA reports here only when these uniquely motivated voters are included. Subject to the limitations of a small sample size, the data may suggest that what is motivating uniquely motivated Californians is marijuana. Uniquely motivated voters vote 7:4 to decriminalize marijuana. The even smaller subset of uniquely motivated voters interviewed on a cellphone is voting 12:1 “Yes” on marijuana. Are the “Yes” on marijuana voters the tail wagging Barbara Boxer’s dog? This is more plausible to SurveyUSA than the reverse, which would be that 3-term incumbent Boxer has a unique tractor-beam in 2010 that is drawing to the polls otherwise disaffected voters who just happen to be pushing Proposition 19 over the top. [emphasis mine]

SurveyUSA’s conclusion is that control of the entire US Senate may rest on Prop 19. Perhaps it’s time to kick some money toward the Yes on Prop 19 campaign? That proposition clings to a 48-44 lead, according to SurveyUSA.

Finally, the poll found that Gavin Newsom has a 43-37 lead over Abel Maldonado for the Lt. Governor’s seat.

More polling will come out tonight from PPIC, and later this week, from Field.

3 thoughts on “SurveyUSA: Prop 19 Responsible For Boxer’s Lead”

  1.   A very important part of SurveyUSA is that they breakdown

    by voters who have voted (absentee, presumably) and those who have not.  The percent of the survey that has voted is

    19%, and among those 19%, Brown and Boxer both have a 2 point lead (Newsom is down).  Unfortunately, there is no breakdown by party on these, but this is of course good news as it means that the Brown/Boxer victories are likely to

    be by 2% or more.

  2. The campaign to legalize marijuana is another campaign to take national.  By that I mean for the 2012 election cycle.  Not a national issue, but a state by state issue in those states where there is even moderate support.

    Just as the gay marriage ballot issues brought out enough cretins and bigots to elect GWB in 2004, ballot issues to legalize marijuana would bring out a left-leaning voter.

    We have less to worry about backlash than we once did.  After we compare the results of this election with 2006 & 2008, we will have the exact number of irredeemably right-wing voters.  I am certain that the absolute number is not growing. The only reason that they are of any consequence right now is that midterm election turnout is low among progressive leaning voters, in most cases.  

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