The USC/LAT poll found Brown has the support of 82 percent of Democrats, 59 percent of no-party-preference voters, and 18 percent of Republicans, while 72 percent of Republicans, 25 percent of independents and 10 percent of Democrats support Kashkari.
The poll also found Brown’s job-approval rating at 57 percent, slightly higher than his 54 percent job approval rating in May and a double-digit increase from his 44 percent approval rating in April 2011, soon after he took office.
“Incumbents are defeated when the challenger gives the voters a compelling reason to make a change, and Kashkari simply hasn’t been able to attract enough attention to make that case to voters,” said Dan Schnur, director of the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll and executive director of the Unruh Institute of Politics at USC.
“California is an uphill challenge for any Republican running statewide. California is an uphill challenge for any underfunded candidate running statewide,” he said. “But California is a very, very steep hill to climb for an underfunded Republican candidate running for statewide office.”
Much of Brown’s lead might have to do with name recognition. When Californians were asked if they knew the name of the current governor of California, 78 percent of voters correctly identified Brown, with 20 percent unsure. Only 20 percent of voters identified Kashkari as the Republican candidate for governor, with 79 percent unsure of the candidate’s name.
Californians are feeling better about the state’s future, though most still aren’t happy, the poll found – 37 percent now say the state is on the “right track” while 48 percent disagree, but that’s a vast improvement from November 2010, when only 15 percent felt it was on the right track and 77 percent said it was headed in the wrong direction.
The USC/LAT poll also found:
The Legislature has a 43 percent disapproval rating and 38 percent approval, showing a slight increase from May 2014 when voters reported a 40 percent disapproval rating and a 41 percent approval.
Proposition 1 — a $7.5 billion bond measure for water infrastructure projects — is backed by 66 percent of voters, a considerably higher level of support than the 52 percent figure reported by the Field Poll last week. But when provided with more information – including that the measure would increase state bond repayment costs but also providing savings to water projects for local governments – support dropped to 57 percent.
The number of voters who see California’s historic drought as a crisis is on the rise, up 11 percentage points from a May 2014 poll.
The USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll of 1,507 voters was conducted Sept. 2 through Sept. 8 and has a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percentage points.
“The California Constitution guarantees that every child is entitled to an equal and quality education,” Kashkari said. “Apparently, Jerry Brown doesn’t agree that the civil rights of poor and minority children are worth fighting for.”
California Attorney General Kamala Harris last week filed a brief on behalf of Brown and the state signaling they’ll appeal the recent Vergara v. California decision which struck down teacher tenure laws.
“It is clear where Jerry Brown’s priorities lie, and sadly, his priority is not the children of our state,” Kashkari said.
The one-hour debate starting at 7 p.m. Thursday is cosponsored by KQED, the Los Angeles Times, the California Channel and Telemundo California, and will be held in the California Channel’s studio with John Myers, KQED’s politics and government editor, as moderator.
KQED Public Television (Channel 9) and Telemundo stations in Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, Fresno and Sacramento will televise it live and provide a simultaneous Spanish-language translation. The California Channel will also broadcast the debate live to more than 5 million homes across the state.
KQED Public Radio will broadcast the debate live on its stations in San Francisco (88.5 FM) and Sacramento (89.3 FM) and will distribute the debate live for broadcast to 30 public radio stations across California via its statewide news service, the California Report.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari announced his “coalition team chairs” Tuesday, and including some familiar Bay Area and California GOP names.
“I am honored by the depth and breadth of the support I’ve received from Californians across our great state,” Kashkari said in a news release. “I appreciate these men and women who have agreed to support my campaign and help spread our message about jobs and education.”
Charles Moran, a Los Angeles development and public affairs consultant who chairs the California Log Cabin Republicans, will chair the campaign’s California Coalitions team – a chair of chairs, as it were. And here’s the rest of the roster:
Indo-Americans for Kashkari – Dr. Vanila Singh of Fremont, a Stanford University professor and physician who was defeated in the 17th Congressional District’s primary election
Healthcare Professionals for Kashkari – Dr. Nikan Khatibi of Laguna Niguel, a physician, neuroscience researcher and medical journal article author
Latinos for Kashkari – Mario Rodriguez of San Clemente, CEO of Jonathan Grey & Associates and chairman of Hispanic 100
Farmers & Ranchers for Kashkari – Ryan Schohr of Chico, a farmer who was defeated in the 3rd Assembly District’s primary election
Veterans for Kashkari – Chuck McDougald of South San Francisco, chairman of the San Mateo County Republican Party
Asian-Americans for Kashkari – Mei Mei Huff of Diamond Bar, business consultant and wife of state Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff
LGBT for Kashkari – co-chairs Susan Jester of San Diego, a community activist and founder of AIDS Walk San Diego; and Mark Snyder of Sacramento, a business owner
Young Professionals for Kashkari – Matthew Del Carlo of San Francisco, a public and corporate affairs consultant, past president of the San Francisco Young Republicans, and 2012 19th Assembly District candidate
Students for Kashkari – co-chairs Jere Ford of the University of San Diego, administrative vice-chair of the California College Republicans, and Ambika Bist of the Claremont Colleges
Women for Kashkari – Parmis Khatibi of Laguna Niguel, a clinical pharmacist specialist at UC-Irvine Medical Center, clinical adjunct professor at UCSF and USC pharmacy schools
Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari on Monday implied that if you aren’t okay with his plan to essentially circumvent school boards’ oversight of funding and curriculum, you’re okay with California’s schools being among the nation’s worst.
Kashkari’s “my way or the same old highway” moment came during his meeting Monday with the Bay Area News Group’s editorial board. I sat in to ask a few questions and observe; as a reporter, I’ll not be involved in subsequent deliberations over an endorsement in this race.
The exchange led to one of the meeting’s best moments, just as we prepared to turn from this contentious point to another topic.
“At least I’m getting to debate someone,” Kashkari quipped with a wry smile.
Kashkari earlier Monday had issued a news release announcing he now has accepted five debate invitations – with the Sacramento Bee/Capitol Public Radio/KCRA; KGTV and KPBS in San Diego; Univision; KSEE and KGPE in Fresno; and KFBK in Sacramento – while Gov. Jerry Brown has not yet responded.
“Governor Jerry Brown is hiding under his desk,” Kashkari said in the news release. “Every voter in our state deserves to know exactly what Jerry Brown plans to do if he’s elected to an unprecedented fourth term.”
Dan Newman, a consultant to Brown’s campaign, replied later Monday that “we’ll respond with plenty of time – it’s early August and he’s got a demanding day job that is the top priority.”
You’ve gotta give him credit for cojones. Whether California voters believe the state is worse off under Brown’s stewardship remains to be seen, but this is not something you would’ve seen Meg Whitman, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Simon, Dan Lungren or Pete Wilson do in a million years. Kashkari may be running his campaign on a shoestring, but he’s clearly all in.
Well, if November’s election goes as widely expected and Gov. Jerry Brown trounces Neel Kashkari, at least the Republican challenger has a new career waiting: Radio host.
Kashkari, a former Treasury Department official from Laguna Beach, on Wednesday will do his third radio guest-hosting gig in as many weeks, filling in for Jillian Barberie to co-host the Mid-Day LA program on KABC 790 with John Phillips from noon to 3 p.m.
There’s no question that Kashkari is using these appearances for electioneering. In announcing the Chris Daniel Show gig, his campaign had said he would “be joined in-studio and on the phone by elected officials and community leaders to discuss a variety of issues including the state’s faltering business climate, the water crisis, Governor Brown’s ‘Crazy Train’ and making Republicans once again competitive in a predominately blue state.” An almost-identical statement preceded the John & Ken Show gig.
Federal Communications Commission regulations require that if a broadcast station lets one legally qualified candidate for public office use its facilities, “it shall afford equal opportunities to all other candidates for that office to use such facilities.”
This “equal-time rule” is applicable here, said Jonathan Kotler, an attorney and associate professor in the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Brown’s campaign would have to request the equal time, he said.
“The Brown campaign has to make a call – do they want the free time, or if I were their strategist, I’d think the best strategy would be to ignore him (Kashkari) because there must be a lot of people out there like me who have never heard of the guy,” Kotler said.
Besides, can you even imagine Brown hosting the John & Ken Show? They’d get so many calls that it would crash all of Southern California.
Asked whether the governor might seek equal time, campaign consultant Dan Newman replied, “Unlikely – he has a busy and demanding day-job.”
“I applaud today’s ruling by Judge Treu, which recognizes that every student in California has a Constitutional right to a quality education but that their rights are being violated by failing schools,” Kashkari said in a statement issued soon after the ruling.
“California ranks 46th in the nation in education, and it will take the joint efforts of parents, teachers and political leaders to make the bold changes our kids deserve,” he said. “Today’s ruling is an important first step in transforming our schools; if we are to close the achievement gap, reduce income inequality and rebuild the middle class, then we must continue to pursue bold education reform. I have made transforming our schools a centerpiece of my campaign for Governor and I am encouraged by today’s development.”
UPDATE @ 12:40 P.M.: Rep. George Miller, D-Martinez, the House Education and the Workforce Committee’s senior Democrat, also applauded the ruling:
“Judge Treu’s ruling affirms the simple and undeniable premise that every child, regardless of background or zip code, has the right to a high-quality education and an effective teacher. It is not only Californians who should celebrate today’s decision, but families in every state and school district across the country.
“For years, our nation’s courts have been the arbiter of equity in education. Like Brown v. Board, Serrano, Butt, and the many other landmark educational equality cases before it, Vergara will help refocus our education system on the needs of students.
“Unfortunately, school districts nationwide have policies in place that mirror those challenged in Vergara—policies that constrain the ability of schools to put the very best teachers in front the children that need them most. This is simply indefensible. Today’s ruling puts every school with similar policies on notice.
“I call upon all stakeholders in my home state—elected officials, community and school leaders, and teachers—to be bold and do what is right for kids. This is an historic opportunity and a defining moment for California, one that we must not squander. The Vergara decision underscores the state’s responsibility to protect the rights of children to constitutionally mandated equal educational opportunities. We owe it to the six million students in California’s public education system to be thoughtful and deliberate, and to put their needs first as we move forward.”
Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari on Monday challenged Gov. Jerry Brown to five formal debates and five town-hall meetings before November’s election, taking a page from Brown’s own campaign playbook.
Kashkari wants Brown to meet him for a debate and a town-hall meeting in each of five regions: the Bay Area, Sacramento, the Central Valley, Los Angeles and San Diego.
“The day after the June 2010 primary election you challenged your Republican opponent to 10 debates,” Kashkari wrote in his letter to Brown. “You said then that we must ‘tell people how we’ll manage their tax dollars, how we’ll hold down taxes, how we’ll make government work better and more efficiently, how we’ll fix our schools and how we’ll create jobs.’ I couldn’t agree more with those sentiments, which are as true today as they were four years ago.”
“Although you continually proclaim a ‘California comeback,’ the truth is that millions of families across the state are being left behind by the status quo you defend,” Kashkari wrote. “Governor, our state is ranked 46th in education, 47th in jobs, and 1st in poverty. In fact, your ‘California comeback’ has ignored the millions of Californians who are looking for work and whose children are stuck in failing schools. That you believe the status quo is acceptable underscores the need for a rigorous debate about the future of our state.”
Kashkari asked for a response by Friday “so we may begin the planning process.”
Brown campaign consulant Dan Newman said Monday afternoon that “we’ll certainly consider debating, providing we can work out the scheduling and details to offer something substantive and worthwhile to voters.”
Assemblyman Tim Donnelly has conceded fellow Republican Neel Kashkari‘s win in Tuesday’s gubernatorial primary, his congratulations thus far haven’t been accompanied by an endorsement, leaving Kashkari’s call for GOP unity unfulfilled at least for now.
Here’s the note Donnelly sent to supporters Wednesday afternoon:
There are no words to express the debt of gratitude I owe to each and every one of you for your tireless efforts in defense of liberty.
As many of you know, last night our campaign ended as we came in third in a race where only the top two advance to the general election.
It was a tough night, but once it became clear that there was no chance of closing that gap, I called my opponent, and congratulated him on the result.
Our campaign may have failed to win the top spot, but we showed that grassroots and meeting people in person is a powerful way to build support. This campaign brought together an amazing array of people from every walk of life, and background. I am honored to have served alongside some of the finest people on the planet over this past year and a half.
This part of the journey may have ended, but one thing became clear: the political establishment remains the greatest threat to California’s future, and last nights result showed that without spending a penny on traditional advertising, we nearly matched the millions spent to defeat us.
It is a credit to each and every one of you who contributed your time and financial resources that we reached almost 470,000 people simply by word of mouth, door-to-door, and on social media.
I am deeply grateful to you for taking a stand to defend our Liberty, when it’s future is most fragile. This campaign may have ended, but take heart; we have united a small, but hardy band of Californians who refuse to be controlled by their government, and our numbers are growing.
Tim Donnelly and Neel Kashkari, the two Republicans vying to make it into the top two with incumbent Democrat Jerry Brown in Tuesday’s gubernatorial primary, are in a statistical dead heat, a new poll finds.
Among likely primary voters, Brown leads with 50 percent while 18 percent favor Kashkari and 13 percent favor Donnelly – the first time any major public poll has showed Kashkari, a former Treasury Department official, leading Donnelly, a more conservative Assemblyman. But the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 4.4 percentage points, meaning the Republicans basically are neck-and-neck.
Among Republican likely voters, 32 percent said they would vote for Kashkari in Tuesday’s primary election, 21 percent said they would vote for Donnelly and 17 percent said they would vote for Brown, while 23 percent of Republican likely voters remain undecided.
It certainly seems Kashkari’s May ad blitz – funded in large part by $2 million from his own pocket – had an effect, as he had been polling far behind Donnelly before that.
Either way, November isn’t looking like much of a contest. If the general election were held today, Brown would defeat Donnelly 54-26 and Kashkari 55-27, according to the poll conducted May 21-28.
“Establishment Republicans beat Tea Party candidates in Georgia, Kentucky, Idaho and Oregon last week. If the trend continues in California — and there’s growing evidence it might — we may be witnessing a national trend towards a more moderate national Republican Party. If The Tea Party candidate wins in California, the internal party struggles will continue and likely exacerbate,” said Mike Madrid, co-director of the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll, USC Unruh Institute Fellow and Republican strategist.
“With the Republican race in a statistical dead heat and with unprecedented levels of low voter turnout, a relatively small number of voters will be determining the ideological direction of the Republican party in California — and perhaps the image of the GOP nationally.”