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Poll: 94% say budget crisis is 'very serious'

January 25, 2010 | 10:00 am

A new Rasmussen poll about the California's budget woes reveals a deeply frustrated electorate unhappy with its elected leaders and their options to balance the budget.

A startling 94% called the fiscal crisis "very serious," while only 2% rated Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's budgetary leadership as excellent.

Half those surveyed, 50%, called his handling of the crisis poor. Schwarzenegger's plan to fill the budget with billions of dollars in federal aid, when framed as a "bailout," was supported by 46% of those surveyed. Asked if the state should file for bankruptcy, cut back on services or raise taxes, the results were:

43% Cutting back on services
28% Raising taxes
15% Filing for bankruptcy
14% Not sure

The most popular proposal in the Rasmussen poll was cutting state worker pay (the details of the question, however, are different than what the governor has proposed). It received 63% support when the option was presented as public employee paycuts versus higher taxes. When voters were asked if they wanted to eliminate welfare and cut back on healthcare for the elderly and disabled, they preferred to raise taxes (52% for taxes to 31% to cut the programs).

See all the questions and the results.

-- Shane Goldmacher