One major project the Institute undertakes is to conduct public opinion surveys each year on governance and policy issues in the San Joaquin Valley. Statewide surveys provide polling information on the Central Valley as a whole but do not draw representative samples of this area. As a consequence, local elected officials lack key information from constituents in this region about their attitude and positions on issues facing the region, state and nation.
The surveys will include a set of topics fielded on a regular basis to examine trends over time and also include more specialized topics on issues of regional importance. College Faculty will be invited to submit potential questions for the surveys on topics related to their research agendas. Information and data from these annual surveys will help inform our local elected leaders on the region's priorities. In addition, elected officials, advocacy groups, and government agencies can use the survey data to lobby policymakers at the local, state and federal level on the pressing needs of the region.
2018 San Joaquin Valley Survey
This survey represents the views and attitudes of registered voters in the San Joaquin Valley (Valley), which encompasses San Joaquin County in the north down to Kern County in the south. The purpose of the survey is to give voice to residents in the Valley and to inform policymakers at the local, state, and federal levels, as well as the media and the public, about social conditions, policy priorities, and viewpoints on issues facing the Valley. Although there are several statewide surveys done periodically throughout the year, these do not provide information and data about the San Joaquin Valley in particular.
According to the final report of the 2018 San Joaquin Valley Survey, half of registered voters know someone that has overdosed on prescription or illegal drugs. The findings in the report are based on a random sample of registered voters from the San Joaquin Valley. The survey was conducted by the Institute for Leadership and Public Policy from Feb 5 through 15, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percent.
Results on 2018 Elections: Newsom and Cox Lead in Close Gubernatorial Race in the San Joaquin Valley
According to a new survey of San Joaquin Valley registered voters, Democrat Gavin Newsom and Republican John Cox lead a close field of candidates running for the 2018 gubernatorial election. Fifteen percent of respondents said they would vote for Newsom if the election were held today, while 12 percent would support Cox (see Table 1 below). Under California’s top-2 primary, the two candidates with the most votes, regardless of their party, move on to compete in the November general election. The poll was conducted in mid-February by the Institute for Leadership and Public Policy at Fresno State and has a margin of error of +/- 3.9 percent.
Results on Air Quality: Many Valley Voters Concerned with Air Quality
According to a new survey of the San Joaquin Valley, about 3 out of 4 registered voters indicate they pay very close or fairly close attention to the air quality in their area. The survey was conducted in February shortly after the San Joaquin Valley experienced several weeks of poor air quality. The poll was conducted by the Institute for Leadership and Public Policy at Fresno State and has a margin of error of +/- 3.9 percent.
The results show that female registered voters are more concerned with air quality than male voters. Nearly 80 percent of female voters pay very close or fairly close attention to air quality, while 70 percent of male voters do.
Results on Support for Generic Congressional Candidates and Attention to Politics
According to a new survey of the San Joaquin Valley, registered voters slightly favor Democratic candidates over Republicans for Congressional races. This generic ballot question, which does not list candidate names, is often used to potentially signal support for one party or the other leading up to an election. Overall, 42 percent of registered voters in the Valley say they would support the Democratic candidate, while 39 percent would vote for the Republican candidate. This difference is the same as the 3-point advantage Democrats have over Republicans in party registration across the entire San Joaquin Valley. The poll was conducted February 5 through 15, 2018 by the Institute for Leadership and Public Policy at Fresno State and has a margin of error of ±3.9 percent.
Results on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program
According to a new survey of the San Joaquin Valley, 7 out of 10 registered voters support the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, otherwise known as DACA. The program began under the Obama Administration and protects undocumented immigrants from deportation who were brought into the United States illegally as children. President Trump took executive action to end the program by March 5, 2018, but court challenges have delayed the program’s termination. The poll was conducted February 5-15, 2018 by the Institute for Leadership and Public Policy at Fresno State and has a margin of error of +/-3.9 percent.
Fresno Bee. "Measuring Public Opinion is Essential to Illuminating our Representative Government" (June 1, 2018)
The Business Journal, "Survey: Newsome, Cox Lead Valley Gubernatorial Poll" (April 16, 2018)
Sierra Sun-Times, "California Central Valley Survey Shows Newsome and Cox Lead Gubernatorial Race - Also a Majority of Registered Voters Support Repeal of the Gas Taxes that the Governor and Legislature Adopted Last Year" (April 16, 2018)
POLITICO, California Playbook (April 11, 2018)
Valley Public Radio (NPR), "New Poll: Majority of Valley Residents Support More Air Pollution Regulations" (April 10, 2018)
Sierra Sun-Times, "Fresno State Study Finds Majority of Valley Voters Support More Restrictions on Residents and Businesses to Improve Air Quality" (April 10, 2018)
Fresno Bee, "Valley Voters' Lives Affected by Air Pollution, and They Want Change, Survey Finds" (April 9, 2018)
Modesto Bee, "Valley Voters' Lives Affected by Air Pollution, and They Want Change, Survey Finds" (April 9, 2018)
Stockton Record, "Study: Valley Voters Support DACA" (March 24, 2018)
Fresno Bee, "Most Central San Joaquin Valley Voters Support DACA, Fresno State Survey Finds" (March 6, 2018)
Merced Sun-Star, "Most Central San Joaquin Valley Voters Support DACA, Fresno State Survey Finds" (March 6, 2018)
Modesto Bee, "Most Central San Joaquin Valley Voters Support DACA, Fresno State Survey Finds" (March 6, 2018)
Modesto Bee, "'It Can Happen to Anybody.' Modesto Protesters Rally Against Recent ICE Actions" (March 6, 2018)