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Make California Legislature part-time, poll majority says [VIDEO]

July 20, 2011 |  1:00 pm

It is time to bump lawmaking down to a part-time profession in California, according to an overwhelming number of respondents in a new poll.

Asked if they favored moving the state's full-time Legislature to part-time status with part-time pay, as in many other states, 65% said yes. The survey was conducted by The Times and the USC/Dornsife College of Letters Arts and Sciences.

California is one of a handful of states in which lawmakers meet year-round, a development that dates to the passage of a 1966 ballot measure. Among the poll respondents, the idea of making legislators part-time garnered broad bipartisan support: 58% of Democrats, 75% of Republicans and 67% of independents favored the concept.

The poll showed that although the Legislature's approval rating has improved over past surveys, it remains a dismal 25%.

The poll surveyed 1,507 registered voters from July 6 to 17. It was conducted by a bipartisan team of polling firms based in the Washington, D.C., area: Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, a Democratic company, and American Viewpoint, a Republican firm. The margin of error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

More poll findings to come.


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-- Michael J. Mishak in Sacramento