Latest Poll: Looks Like Rhode Islanders Get It…will the GA?

Darrell West is out with his latest poll. The headline grabber is apparently that Hillary is slightly ahead of Obama with the March primary coming up. Yeah, ok. However, the most interesting and important question is the last (emphasis added for those proposals that met with majority support):

The state faces a substantial deficit in its fiscal budget. By law, it is required to eliminate this deficit. Which of the following items would you support or oppose to close this deficit:
a) layoffs of state employees: 52% support, 36% oppose, 12% don’t know or no answer
b) an increase in the state income tax: 22% support, 71% oppose, 7% don’t know or no answer
c) reduction of state aid to local communities: 28% support, 60% oppose, 12% don’t know or no answer
d) raising the state sales tax: 23% support, 70% oppose, 7% don’t know or no answer
e) reducing state aid for local education: 18% support, 75% oppose, 7% don’t know or no answer
f) imposing a two-year time limit on welfare benefits: 71% support, 19% oppose, 10% don’t know or no answer
g) raising the capital gains tax: 42% support, 43% oppose, 15% don’t know or no answer
h) changing the public employee work week from 35 to 40 hours: 71% support, 19% oppose, 10% don’t know or no answer
i) reducing subsidized health care for low-income families: 24% support, 65% oppose, 11% don’t know or no answer
j) raising public employee contributions to their health care plans: 68% support, 23% oppose, 9% don’t know or no answer
k) adding furlough days without pay for public employees: 43% support, 43% oppose, 14% don’t know or no answer
l) raising income taxes on high-wage earners: 61% support, 31% oppose, 8% don’t know or no answer
m) making changes in Medicaid that would encourage senior citizens to use visiting nurses instead of nursing homes: 63% support, 24% oppose, 13% don’t know or no answer
n) privatizing housekeeping, janitorial, and dietary services at some state institutions: 55% support, 26% oppose, 19% don’t know or no answer

Of these, raising taxes on “high-wage earners” probably has the best chance of passing, huh? But I wonder if the General Assembly is listening. Or if they’ll actually suffer the consequences in November if they aren’t…

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Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

West’s poll shows that the vast majority of voters are in line with state Republican positions as outlined by Carcieri.
The November election will show if the voters get it. If ever there was a time for a strong slate of GOP legislative candidates, the time is now.

Mike
Mike
13 years ago

Does anyone know if the governor’s “reduce welfare to 2 years” includes repeal of the scanalous “child only” scam?
If not, he should just resign know and let the lunactics (Roberts) take over the asylum.

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

This sounds like a good election for Republicans who know how to triangulate (positioning themselves between Assembly Democrats and Carcieri).
That’s the reading I got from this poll. Respondents seem to agree with a number of Carcieri’s plans (welfare, layoffs, state employees), but they’re hesitant about coddling the rich or joining the gov’s assault on the poor.
However, the GOP will blow a great opportunity if it can’t get past the Chafee-Laffey tensions. When Dems see Republicans blasting their own potential candidates because they don’t take the vow of Chafee repudiation, Dems have to feel pretty confident.

Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

rhody,
I agree. However, I would suggest that the question “reducing subsidized health care for low-income families” might be overly broad.
Outside of a few hardcore libertarians, few Rhode Islanders would want to throw low income families out on the street without health care. It’s a matter of degree–what is the appropriate income threshhold, should children of illegals be covered, etc. The poll questions don’t delve into these details and the percentages would differ according to how the question is asked.
Finally, the Chafee/Laffey divisions shouldn’t cause any problems. That’s not to say they won’t, but they shouldn’t.
Laffey is gearing up for a run for governor and it’s in his best interest to mend alot of fences if he holds any hope of winning. Chafee has voluntarily removed himself from having any input on the Republican agenda based on his recent published comments.
If Laffey starts to mend fences and Chafee continues his self-imposed exile from the GOP, there really shouldn’t be much opportunity for conflict.
The real division might end up being between Carcieri and Laffey. If Carcieri’s numbers are still low next year, Laffey might feel obligated to distance himself. That could lead to some of Carcieri’s support shifting to Caprio and would set up another interesting division within the GOP.
But that would occur after the November elections and should have no bearing on them.

Tim
Tim
13 years ago

Anthony,
The Carcieri/Laffey divide is there now. If Caprio is the Democrat coming out of the primaries he’ll get much support from the Carcieri camp in the general election.

Tim
Tim
13 years ago

Anthony,
The Carcieri/Laffey divide is there now. If Caprio is the Democrat coming out of the primaries he’ll get much support from the Carcieri camp in the general election.

Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

Tim, you’re right that there isn’t much love lost between Carcieri and Laffey, but I don’t think it’s gotten anywhere near the level of Chafee/Laffey. Yet.

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

Given they’re both social conservatives, the idea of a Carcieri-Laffey feud strikes me odd. The only reason I can think of is that Laffey’s ego drives even The Don crazy.
Still, Don would’ve endorsed him (or at least stayed neutral) in ’06 if he had his druthers. The only reason Carcieri endorsed Linc was being shamed into it by NRSCC folks after he failed to express a preference in an interview (given that not endorsing your party’s incumbent is considered very un-PC by the Washington types of both parties).

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