Polling & Research

California Polling – December 2020

Californians overwhelmingly want Governor Gavin Newsom to appoint the best person possible to fill Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris’ senate seat regardless of race or sex and people are more overwhelmed by living with Covid than they expected according to a poll released today by Strother Nuckels Strategies.

To view the full poll and crosstabs click here

Though the governor wrestles with whom to pick and is buffeted by constituencies of varying ideology and races some 70 percent said ethnicity didn’t matter and 69 percent said the sex of the appointee is irrelevant.  These are among the findings of a PPP poll conducted by Strother-Nuckels Strategies this week of 761 California voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.6%.

Who exactly voters support for the senate seat is undefined.  Congressmember Karen Bass received 14 percent in a list of nine potential candidates with Secretary of State Alex Padilla at 11 percent and Attorney General Xavier Becerra receiving 10 percent.  The three are within the margin of error of the poll.  However, among African Americans, Bass garners a plurality of the vote preference at 44% with the next closest choice of Rep. Barbara Lee at 11 percent.  Among Latinx voters, there is no such plurality with Padilla at 22 percent and Becerra at 18 percent.

And while the public at large may not care, Newsom would certainly be hard pressed not to select a woman or person of color to fill the seat.

There is also certainty of Californians’ concern with Covid.

When asked if personally dealing with Covid and all that comes with it had been more difficult than one thought, 28 percent said much more difficult, 32 percent said somewhat more difficult and 36 percent said less or no difficult at all.

With vaccinations reportedly beginning soon 41 percent said they will definitely get the shot and 26 percent likely. Some 25 percent are unlikely or will refuse.  When asked if they thought their neighbors would be vaccinated 22 said certainly and 39 percent said likely with 20 percent not sure what their neighbor would do.  Only 49 percent of Trump voters will certainly or likely get a vaccine as opposed to 77 percent of Biden voters.

Even with a vaccine on the way, people have a far different view of dealing with Covid than the beginnings of shutdowns in March when 46 percent of people expected life to return to normal in three months or less according to an SNS poll.

Today 49 percent believe a return to norm will take longer than six months and 15 percent don’t ever expect a full return.

Perhaps accordingly 72 percent support Newsom’s outdoor mask mandate though it breaks heavily along party lines with 90 percent of Democrats supporting masks and only 46 percent of Republicans.  Independents are in the middle with 61 percent supporting the edict.

As to what the first thing someone will do upon being vaccinated the answers differ per political persuasion.  Nineteen percent of Republicans will have a meal indoors at a restaurant.  Twenty two percent of independents will take a vacation and 20 percent of Democrats will hold a large gathering of family and friends.

And as this article is about a poll it’s sobering to note that only 52 percent believe polls are accurate.  Only 25 percent of Republicans and 39 percent of NPP believe in the science of polling.  Some 70 percent of Democrats believe the numbers.

It’s worth noting this poll accurately found that 63 percent of voters supported Biden which may give some of the naysayers pause.

But then nothing is clearly 20/20 in this year of 2020.

You can read and download the full results of the poll along with the crosstabs by clicking here

SNS Poll conducted by Public Policy Polling from November 30th – December 1st.

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