February 15, 2007 - Connecticut Voters Like Gov Rell, But Not Tax Hike, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Voters Mixed On Gay Marriage, Civil Unions
Even after proposing an unpopular tax hike, Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell gets a 72 - 20 percent approval rating, continuing her two-year streak of plus 70 percent approval scores, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Even Democrats approve of the Republican Governor 68 - 21 percent, while independent voters approve 75 - 19 percent and Republicans approve 78 - 16 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

Voter's support 70 - 25 percent Rell's proposed $3.4 billion increase in state education spending over five years, with strong backing among all parties and in all regions of the state.

But voters oppose 56 - 39 percent the Governor's proposal to raise the state income tax to pay for increased education spending. Democrats split 47 - 47 percent on the proposed tax hike, while Republicans oppose it 65 - 30 percent and independent voters oppose it 57 - 41 percent.

"Gov. Jodi Rell's approval remains sky high, even in the wake of her income tax hike proposal. You can call her 'Teflon Jodi.' She has never dipped below 70 percent approval," said Quinnipiac University Poll Director Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D.

"Voters support the Governor's call for more spending on education. They just don't agree with her plan to pay for it by hiking the income tax. Interestingly, she gets more support for her income tax hike from Democrats than her own Republican Party members."

"But Connecticut Republicans, Democrats, and independents all support Rell's proposal to increase the tax on cigarettes, with the statewide tally at 71 - 25 percent," Dr. Schwartz added.

By a 79 - 12 percent margin, voters do not believe Rell's argument that increased state education spending will result in lower property taxes. On other tax questions:
  • Voters oppose 50 - 44 percent hiking state income taxes on just the wealthy to pay for increased education spending;
  • Voters support 48 - 41 percent eliminating the estate tax on estates worth more than $2 million;
  • Voters support 68 - 26 percent eliminating the local property tax on cars;
  • Voters support 48 - 42 percent eliminating the local property tax credit on the state income tax to pay for the elimination of the car tax.
Connecticut voters are mixed on the issue of civil unions and gay marriage:
  • 39 percent say gays should be allowed to legally marry;
  • 33 percent say gays should be allowed to form civil unions, but not marry;
  • 22 percent say there should be no legal recognition of a same-sex union.
"On the same-sex marriage issue, there is a big difference by age. The older people are, the more opposed they are to same-sex marriage," Schwartz said.

Voters support 76 - 17 percent Rell's proposal to have insurance companies provide health insurance to Connecticut residents for $250 per month, with the state helping to pay the premium for those who can't afford it. Support is strong among all parties and in all areas of the state.

But voters say 53 - 31 percent that the state should do more to help the uninsured.

From February 9 - 12, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,087 Connecticut registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and the nation as a public service and for research. For more data -- www.quinnipiac.edu and click on Institutes and Centers, or call (203) 582-5201.

32. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Jodi Rell is handling her job as Governor?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 72% 78% 68% 75% 70% 74% Disapprove 20 16 21 19 23 17 DK/NA 8 6 12 6 7 10

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Approve 82% 68% 59% 72% 66% Disapprove 10 25 36 17 27 DK/NA 8 7 5 11 7

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Jodi Rell is handling her job as Governor?

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Feb 15  Aug 17  Jul 20  Jun 8   May 2   Jan 13  Feb 15
                        2007    2006    2006    2006    2006    2005    2007  


Approve 72 73 74 75 77 83 72 Disapprove 20 15 13 12 11 3 20 DK/NA 8 12 13 13 12 14 8



33. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the state legislature is handling its job?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 47% 41% 52% 47% 43% 51% Disapprove 34 38 28 37 42 28 DK/NA 18 21 20 16 15 21

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Approve 49% 50% 46% 46% 42% Disapprove 27 33 38 35 45 DK/NA 24 16 16 18 13

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the state legislature is handling its job?

                        Feb 15  Jun 3   Nov 21  Oct 9   Jul 31
                        2007    2004    2003    2003    2003


Approve 47 48 38 35 29 Disapprove 34 33 45 49 57 DK/NA 18 19 18 16 14



41. As you may know, Governor Rell has proposed a 3.4 billion dollar increase in state spending for education over 5 years. Do you support or oppose this increase in education spending?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 70% 62% 77% 68% 66% 73% Oppose 25 31 17 28 29 22 DK/NA 5 7 6 3 5 5

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 73% 65% 65% 72% 68% Oppose 20 30 30 24 30 DK/NA 7 5 5 4 3

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+

Support 89% 73% 66% 54% Oppose 9 21 30 39 DK/NA 2 6 5 7



42. Governor Rell has proposed raising the state income tax to help pay for this increase in education spending. Do you support or oppose raising the state income tax to help pay for this increase in education spending?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 39% 30% 47% 41% 39% 40% Oppose 56 65 47 57 59 53 DK/NA 5 5 6 3 3 7

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 42% 38% 28% 40% 40% Oppose 51 59 67 55 56 DK/NA 7 3 6 5 4

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+

Support 55% 40% 35% 34% Oppose 42 57 59 59 DK/NA 3 3 6 7



43. Instead of Governor Rell's across the board tax increase, do you think the state should increase the income tax just on the wealthy to pay for this increase in education spending?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes 44% 26% 58% 42% 40% 47% No 50 69 36 51 55 45 DK/NA 7 5 6 7 5 8

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Yes 44% 40% 46% 46% 43% No 49 53 44 47 54 DK/NA 7 7 10 7 3

ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME...... <30K 30-50 50-100 >100K

Yes 53% 52% 40% 36% No 37 43 56 57 DK/NA 10 6 4 6



44. Governor Rell has said that this increase in state education spending should help towns and cities lower local property taxes. Do you think your local property taxes will drop as a result of this increase in education spending?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes 12% 9% 12% 13% 11% 13% No 79 86 77 79 81 77 DK/NA 9 4 11 8 8 10

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Yes 14% 10% 5% 14% 10% No 78 78 91 78 80 DK/NA 8 12 4 9 11



45. Governor Rell has proposed raising the tax on a pack of cigarettes 49 cents to help meet state needs. Do you support or oppose this proposal?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 71% 72% 76% 69% 71% 72% Oppose 25 24 22 28 25 24 DK/NA 4 4 2 3 4 4

ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME...... Smokers 30K 30-50 50-100 >100K Support 36% 65% 67% 72% 84% Oppose 62 31 27 26 15 DK/NA 2 5 6 2 1



46. Currently, estates valued at more than 2 million dollars are subject to Connecticut's estate tax. Governor Rell has proposed phasing out the estate tax over 5 years. Do you support or oppose Governor Rell's plan to phase out the estate tax?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 48% 67% 42% 44% 49% 48% Oppose 41 27 47 44 45 38 DK/NA 10 7 10 11 6 14

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 60% 46% 45% 44% 42% Oppose 29 46 38 44 52 DK/NA 12 7 17 12 6

ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME...... <30K 30-50 50-100 >100K Support 36% 43% 51% 59% Oppose 43 48 43 36 DK/NA 22 9 6 5



47. Governor Rell has proposed eliminating the local property tax on cars. Do you support or oppose this proposal?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 68% 72% 63% 69% 66% 69% Oppose 26 20 30 26 29 24 DK/NA 6 7 8 4 5 7

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 71% 61% 72% 69% 68% Oppose 22 33 23 25 26 DK/NA 7 6 5 6 5



48. To help pay for the elimination of the car tax, Governor Rell wants to phase out the local property tax credit on the state income tax for everyone but senior citizens. Do you support or oppose eliminating the local property tax credit?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 48% 53% 46% 48% 49% 47% Oppose 42 41 43 41 46 40 DK/NA 10 7 11 10 6 13

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 44% 52% 50% 49% 46% Oppose 39 43 35 43 50 DK/NA 17 5 15 8 4



49. Governor Rell has proposed having health insurance companies offer a comprehensive policy to those who are uninsured for 250 dollars a month in premiums. For those who couldn't afford that amount, the state would help out. Do you support or oppose this proposal?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 76% 68% 79% 78% 77% 75% Oppose 17 25 13 16 17 17 DK/NA 7 7 7 6 6 7

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Support 78% 73% 79% 77% 74% Oppose 14 20 17 17 20 DK/NA 9 7 4 6 5

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+ Smokers

Support 84% 76% 77% 68% 81% Oppose 14 15 19 20 18 DK/NA 2 8 5 12 1



50. Do you think this plan does enough to help the state's estimated 400,000 uninsured, or do you think the state should do more?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Plan does enough 31% 43% 22% 33% 34% 28% State do more 53 36 64 53 49 56 DK/NA 16 21 14 15 17 15

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Plan does enough 34% 32% 35% 25% 30% State do more 45 53 55 61 53 DK/NA 21 15 10 14 17

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+ Smokers

Plan does enough 25% 31% 36% 30% 27% State do more 71 55 47 44 61 DK/NA 4 14 17 26 12



51. Do you think same-sex couples should be allowed legally to marry, should be allowed legally to form civil unions, but not marry, or should not be allowed to obtain legal recognition of their relationships?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Marry 39% 22% 53% 38% 33% 44% Civil unions 33 41 24 37 35 31 No recognition 22 32 15 21 26 19 DK/NA 6 5 7 4 6 6

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Marry 42% 37% 37% 36% 44% Civil unions 34 32 26 36 29 No recognition 18 24 28 23 24 DK/NA 6 7 9 5 4

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+

Marry 56% 46% 36% 19% Civil unions 29 30 37 36 No recognition 13 20 20 37 DK/NA 2 4 7 8



52. Do you currently smoke cigarettes?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes 19% 16% 20% 19% 16% 21% No 81 83 80 81 83 79 NOT REGULAR SMOKER(VOL) - - - 1 - - DK/NA - - - - - -

MdlSex Toll,Wndm Fairfld Hrtford Ltchfld NewHvn NewLon

Yes 17% 18% 15% 19% 23% No 82 82 85 80 77 NOT REGULAR SMOKER(VOL) 1 - - - - DK/NA - - - - -

AGE IN YEARS............... 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+

Yes 31% 18% 18% 10% No 69 82 81 90 NOT REGULAR SMOKER(VOL) - - - - DK/NA - - - -

TREND: Do you currently smoke cigarettes?

                        Feb 15  Feb 18  Nov 21  Apr 30  Feb 15
                        2007    2005    2003    2003    2002


Yes 19 18 19 18 16 No 81 82 80 81 83 NOT REGULAR SMOKER(VOL) - - 1 1 1 DK/NA - - - - -