April 11, 2019 - Death Penalty Divides California Voters, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Governor Should Investigate Horse Racing, Voters Say Quinnipiac University Polling Logo
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California voters are divided on a life or death issue, as 41 percent prefer the death penalty for people convicted of murder while 48 percent prefer life in prison with no chance of parole, according to a Quinnipiac University Poll released today.

Men are divided as 43 percent prefer the death penalty and 46 prefer life without parole, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll finds. Women prefer life without parole 51 - 39 percent. Republicans prefer the death penalty 68 - 22 percent as Democrats back life without parole 69 - 24 percent. Among independent voters, 47 percent prefer the death penalty and 42 percent prefer life without parole.

The strongest support for the death penalty is inland and in the Valley, where 47 percent prefer the death penalty and 43 percent back life without parole. The strongest support for life without parole is in Los Angeles County, where 56 percent back life and 34 percent prefer death.

California voters also are divided on Gov. Gavin Newsom's suspension of the death penalty as 44 percent support the move and 46 percent oppose it. Men oppose the suspension 50 - 42 percent. Women are divided as 47 percent support the suspension, with 43 percent opposed. Support for the suspension is 64 - 27 percent among Democrats. Opposition is 77 - 16 percent among Republicans and 50 - 41 percent among independent voters.

"The governor has spoken, but California voters are closely divided on whether to put the lights back on in San Quentin's death chamber, 13 years after the last execution," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"They also are divided on the question of execution vs. life without parole."

California voters approve 40 - 33 percent of the job Gov. Gavin Newsom is doing, compared to a 39 - 28 percent approval rating in a February 6 Quinnipiac University poll. Democrats approve 71 - 8 percent, while Republicans disapprove 75 - 6 percent. Among independent voters, 31 percent approve and 41 percent disapprove.

U.S. Sen. Diane Feinstein gets a 47 - 37 percent approval rating.

U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris has a 47 - 30 percent job approval rating.

Horse Racing

California voters say 55 - 35 percent that Gov. Newsom should create an independent panel to investigate the deaths of race horses in the state. Support is 60 - 31 percent among women and 50 - 39 percent among men.

Only 19 percent of voters have a favorable opinion of horseracing, with 20 percent unfavorable and 59 percent expressing no opinion.

"After the deaths of 23 race horses at California's most storied race track, the governor wants answers and so do voters," Malloy said.

Sanctuary Cities

California voters are divided on the issue of sanctuary cities as 46 percent say these cities should be able to deal with immigrants as they see fit, while 47 percent say these cities should be forced to comply with federal immigration efforts.

Support for sanctuary cities is strongest in Los Angeles County, 53 - 40 percent, and in the Bay Area, 52 - 39 percent. Support for enforcing federal immigration efforts is strongest in Southern California, 55 - 40 percent, and inland and in the Valley, 53 - 40 percent.

Voters oppose 70 - 23 percent closing the entire border between the U.S. and Mexico. Republicans support closing the border 59 - 29 percent, the only listed party, gender, racial, regional or age group to support this measure.

Climate change is an emergency, California voters say 63 - 33 percent, but only 16 percent support the "Green New Deal," with 27 percent opposed and 56 percent who haven't heard enough about it to decide.

"No argument from Californians on climate change; it's a clear and present danger," Malloy said. "But voters are opposed or don't know enough about the 'Green New Deal.'"

From April 3 - 8, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,005 California voters with a margin of error of +/- 4.1 percentage points, including the design effect.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts gold standard surveys using random digit dialing with live interviewers calling landlines and cell phones. The Quinnipiac University Poll conducts nationwide surveys and polls in more than a dozen states on national and statewide elections, as well as public policy issues.

Visit poll.qu.edu or www.facebook.com/quinnipiacpoll

Call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter @QuinnipiacPoll.

9. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Gavin Newsom is handling his job as governor?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Approve              40%     6%    71%    31%    37%    43%    41%    45%
Disapprove           33     75      8     41     34     32     39     27
DK/NA                27     19     21     28     28     25     21     28
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Approve              39%    35%    49%    51%    30%    33%    45%    39%    47%
Disapprove           35     37     26     22     44     21     33     45     35
DK/NA                26     28     25     27     26     46     21     16     18
 
 
10. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Diane Feinstein is handling her job as United States Senator?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Approve              47%     8%    76%    42%    41%    53%    42%    56%
Disapprove           37     75     16     38     39     35     48     27
DK/NA                16     17      8     20     20     12     10     18
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Approve              44%    42%    53%    55%    41%    43%    54%    43%    51%
Disapprove           36     45     31     32     39     25     31     49     43
DK/NA                20     13     16     14     20     32     15      8      6
 
 
11. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Kamala Harris is handling her job as United States Senator?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Approve              47%     8%    77%    39%    43%    51%    44%    50%
Disapprove           30     68      8     32     32     28     38     24
DK/NA                23     23     14     29     25     21     18     26
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Approve              44%    41%    64%    55%    35%    44%    57%    43%    46%
Disapprove           29     39     15     25     38     23     25     36     39
DK/NA                27     20     21     19     27     34     19     21     15
 
 
16. As you may know, some cities are refusing to assist the federal government in its efforts to detain or deport undocumented immigrants. These are sometimes called "sanctuary cities." Do you think these cities should be able to deal with immigrants as they see fit, or should these cities be forced to comply with federal immigration efforts?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
As they see fit      46%     8%    73%    37%    43%    49%    40%    52%
Comply with efforts  47     88     19     57     51     43     53     44
DK/NA                 7      3      7      5      6      8      7      4
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
As they see fit      45%    40%    52%    53%    40%    58%    48%    31%    45%
Comply with efforts  46     53     39     40     55     39     42     62     47
DK/NA                 9      7      9      7      5      3      9      7      8
 
 
17. Do you support or oppose closing the entire border between the United States and Mexico?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Support              23%    59%     6%    23%    22%    24%    30%    17%
Oppose               70     29     93     66     69     71     64     79
DK/NA                 7     12      1     11      9      5      6      4
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Support              22%    29%    18%    24%    23%    13%    15%    31%    33%
Oppose               69     67     73     72     69     81     79     58     63
DK/NA                 9      4      9      4      9      6      6     10      4
 
 
18. Do you think that climate change is an emergency, or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Yes/Emergency        63%    20%    89%    60%    59%    67%    59%    71%
No                   33     76     10     35     37     29     39     26
DK/NA                 4      4      1      4      4      4      2      3
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Yes/Emergency        58%    57%    74%    70%    55%    75%    70%    53%    55%
No                   41     37     24     26     40     24     24     44     39
DK/NA                 2      6      2      4      5      1      6      3      6
 
 
19. Do you support or oppose the Green New Deal, or haven't you heard enough about it to decide?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Support              16%     1%    26%    16%    18%    14%    17%    12%
Oppose               27     64      7     29     32     22     33     20
Hvn't hrd enough     56     35     66     54     49     62     49     69
REFUSED               1      -      1      1      -      1      1      -
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Support              17%    15%    24%    16%    12%    15%    19%    13%    15%
Oppose               35     28     21     21     34     20     26     33     31
Hvn't hrd enough     47     55     55     63     53     65     55     53     54
REFUSED               -      1      1      -      1      -      1      1      -
 
 
20. Is your opinion of horse racing favorable, unfavorable or don't you have an opinion on that?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Favorable            19%    26%    18%    16%    20%    17%    26%    14%
Unfavorable          20     12     23     21     17     22     22     19
No opinion           59     59     58     59     61     58     51     64
DK/NA                 2      3      1      3      3      2      1      3
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Favorable            17%    16%    19%    17%    22%    11%    22%    19%    25%
Unfavorable          20     20     17     25     16     15     24     22     19
No opinion           61     64     59     57     58     72     51     58     53
DK/NA                 2      -      5      1      4      2      3      1      2
 
 
21. As you may know, 23 horses have died at the Santa Anita racetrack since December of 2018. Do you think that Governor Newsom should create an independent panel to investigate this issue, or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Yes/Investigate      55%    36%    65%    57%    50%    60%    52%    66%
No                   35     54     25     33     39     31     39     30
DK/NA                10     10     10     11     11     10     10      5
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Yes/Investigate      55%    53%    51%    67%    48%    64%    51%    53%    56%
No                   37     40     33     24     41     25     38     39     34
DK/NA                 7      7     16      9     11     11     11      8     10
 
 
22. Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder: the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Death penalty        41%    68%    24%    47%    43%    39%    41%    42%
Life/No parole       48     22     69     42     46     51     49     49
DK/NA                11     10      7     11     11     10     10      9
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Death penalty        35%    47%    42%    34%    44%    34%    45%    47%    38%
Life/No parole       52     43     50     56     44     56     42     45     53
DK/NA                14     10      8     10     12     10     13      8     10
 
 
23. Do you support or oppose Governor Newsom's suspension of the death penalty in California?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Hsp
 
Support              44%    16%    64%    41%    42%    47%    44%    41%
Oppose               46     77     27     50     50     43     48     50
DK/NA                 9      7      8      8      9     10      8      9
 
                     AREA.............................
                            Inlnd/ Bay    L.A.   Sthrn  AGE IN YRS..............
                     Coastl Valley Area   County Cali   18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Support              49%    41%    54%    51%    34%    44%    47%    42%    44%
Oppose               35     52     41     36     59     40     46     54     48
DK/NA                16      8      5     13      8     15      8      4      9