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ppic1207

Nearly Half Think The U.S. Has A Responsibility To Respond To Israeli–Hamas Fighting; Most Support Congress Providing Additional Funding To Ukraine

December 7, 2023 - SAN FRANCISCO - Asked about a March 2024 ballot measure that would restructure funding for behavioral health services, two in three likely voters say they would vote to approve. Nearly half of the state’s likely voters believe that the United States has a responsibility to do something about the fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas, while a majority of likely voters think Congress should authorize additional funding for Ukraine to support its war with Russia. These are among the key findings from a statewide survey released on Wednesday by the Public Policy Institute of California.

Full Survey Report

Proposition 1 on the March 2024 state ballot would restructure funding for behavioral health services and provide bond funding for housing for homeless individuals, those at risk of being homeless, and veterans with mental health or substance abuse disorders. Two-thirds of likely voters (68%) say they would vote “yes” on Prop 1, with 30 percent saying they would vote “no” and 2 percent undecided. Views vary across party lines, with 85 percent of Democrats, 66 percent of independents, and 40 percent of Republicans saying they would vote “yes.” Likely voters in Los Angeles (73%) are the most likely to support this ballot measure (68% San Francisco Bay Area, 67% Central Valley, 67% Orange/San Diego, 65% Inland Empire).

Fifty-one percent of likely voters say it is a good time for the state to issue $6.38 billion in bonds, as Prop 1 would do. A solid majority think the Mental Health Services Act—enacted by voters nearly 20 years ago—needs either major changes (30%) or minor changes (34%).

“Two in three likely voters would vote ‘yes’ on Proposition 1, the behavioral health bond and services act on the March ballot,” said Mark Baldassare, PPIC Statewide Survey director and Miller Chair in Public Policy. “Half say it is a good time to pass a bond and most believe that changes are needed to the Mental Health Services Act.”

The new statewide survey also finds:

  • Schiff and Porter lead in the US Senate primary. Trump leads by a wide margin in the GOP presidential primary. Among likely voters, Congressman Adam Schiff (21%) and Congresswoman Katie Porter (16%)—both Democrats—lead in the March 2024 top-two primary race for the US Senate. Ten percent of likely voters say they would vote for Republican Steve Garvey and 8 percent support Democratic congresswoman Barbara Lee.

    In the 2024 presidential race, former president Donald Trump leads California’s Republican primary race by a wide margin (Trump 56% of Republican likely voters, former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley 13%, Florida governor Ron DeSantis 12%, former New Jersey governor Chris Christie 5%).

    “Democratic congressmembers Adam Schiff and Katie Porter continue to lead in the top-two US Senate primary,” Baldassare said. “A majority of Republican likely voters support former president Donald Trump in the presidential primary.”

  • Majorities of Californians continue to approve of Governor Newsom. Economic conditions, housing, and homelessness are the three top issues for Californians. Majorities of adults and likely voters (52% for both groups) approve of how Governor Gavin Newsom is handling his job. Views vary widely across partisan lines, with 77 percent of Democrats, 46 percent of independents, and 12 percent of Republicans approving of the governor. Asked to name the top issue facing the state, 31 percent of Californians say jobs, the economy, and inflation, 15 percent say housing costs and availability, and 14 percent say homelessness.

    “Majorities of adults and likely voters continue to approve of Governor Gavin Newsom’s performance in office,” Baldassare said. “Six in ten Californians name economic conditions, housing, and homelessness as the most important issues facing people in California today.”

  • Half say housing costs are a financial strain, and majorities across parties say the state needs policies to boost affordability. Fifty-one percent of Californians say the cost of housing places a financial strain on them and their family. Residents of the Inland Empire (61%) and Los Angeles (54%) are the most likely to say this (49% Central Valley, 48% Orange/San Diego, 46% San Francisco Bay Area). About three in four Californians (76% adults, 73% likely voters) think the state needs more policies aimed at making homebuying more accessible, including majorities across parties (85% Democrats, 72% independents, 57% Republicans). More than seven in ten (74%) adults and likely voters (72%) think California needs more policies geared toward making rental housing more accessible. This also includes majorities across party lines (83% Democrats, 73% independents, 51% Republicans).

    “Half of Californians say that the cost of housing is a financial strain on them,” Baldassare said. “Majorities across parties say that California needs more policies geared toward making homebuying and rental housing more accessible.”

  • Almost half of California’s likely voters—and more than one-third of all adults—believe the US should take action regarding fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas. Asked whether the US has a responsibility to do something about the fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas, nearly half (48%) of likely voters say it should; 37 percent of all adults hold this view. Sixty-one percent of adults believe the US should not take a side in the Israeli–Hamas conflict (28% Israel’s side, 9% Palestinian side). Among likely voters, 51 percent say the US should not take a side in this conflict (37% Israel’s side, 11% Palestinian side).

    “Thirty-seven percent of adults and 48 percent of likely voters think the US has a responsibility to ‘do something’ about the fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas,” Baldassare said. “Majorities say that the US should not take either side in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.”

  • A majority of likely voters—and more than four in ten adults—approve of Congress authorizing new funding to Ukraine. Fifty-eight percent of likely voters think Congress should authorize additional funding to support Ukraine in its war with Russia; 46 percent of adults hold this view. Asked about the amount of funding that the US is providing to Ukraine, 29% of adults (25% of likely voters) say there has been too much support, 16% (21% likely voters) say there has not been enough, and 36% (41% likely voters) say the amount of support has been about right. Views vary across party lines, with a plurality of Democrats (43%) and independents (40%) saying the US has provided about the right amount of support while a plurality of Republicans (48%) say it has provided too much support.

    “Forty-six percent of adults and 58 percent of likely voters say that Congress should authorize additional funding to support Ukraine in the war with Russia,” Baldassare said. “Partisans are split when asked about the amount of support the US has given to Ukraine.”

About the Survey

The Californians and Their Government survey is supported with funding from the Arjay and Frances F. Miller Foundation and the James Irvine Foundation.

The findings are based on responses from 1,660 California adult residents. The sampling error is ±3.2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level for the total unweighted sample and ±3.8 percent for the 1,113 likely voters. Interviewing took place from November 9–16, 2023. For more information, please see the methodology section in the full survey report.

Mark Baldassare is statewide survey director at PPIC, where he holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has directed since 1998.

The Public Policy Institute of California is dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. We are a public charity. We do not take or support positions on any ballot measure or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor do we endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. Research publications reflect the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of our funders or of the staff, officers, advisory councils, or board of directors of the Public Policy Institute of California.
Source: PPIC