California's Tax-Hiking Propositions Unlikely to Pass

Two of California’s high profile ballot initiatives are not likely to pass, according to downward trends in the polls. Propositions 30 and 38 are both tax hikes intended to fund public schools.

The most recent polls, conducted October 14-21 by the Public Policy Institute of California, show 48% in favor of Proposition 30 and just 39% in favor of Proposition 38. Eight percent of voters are undecided on each. The same poll showed 52% in favor of Proposition 30 in mid-September, and 45% in favor of Proposition 38 – a sharp drop in a short period of time.

The other large polls conducted, including USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times and PACE/USC Rossier School of Education, show that Proposition 38 was unable to garner more than 40% support. Proposition 30, on the other hand, has seen a notable shift among voters. In March, USC Dornslife/LAT reported almost two-thirds favoring the measure. However in August, the PACE/USC Rossier School of Education reported support dropped to 55%. The latest PPIC poll from October measured support below 50% for the first time, at 48%.

Proposition 38 would increase income taxes for a period of 12 years, starting with those who make over $7,316 a year. Proposition 30 would amend California’s constitution, increasing income tax starting with those who make over $250,000, with a 3% increase for millionaires. It would also raise California’s sales tax from 7.25 to 7.5%. California already has the highest statewide base sales tax rate in the nation.

If both propositions were to pass, the one with more affirmative votes would be the one implemented.


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