December 8, 2005 - Pennsylvania Voters Have Little Confidence In Tax Fix, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Anti-Incumbent Feeling Is Strong
By a 2 -1 margin, Pennsylvania voters are not confident that their legislators will agree during the special session on a plan to reduce property taxes, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. A total of 31 percent are "very confident" or "somewhat confident," while 66 percent are "not very confident" or "not confident at all."

Voters disapprove 57 - 30 percent of the job the State Legislature is doing, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN uh-pe-ack) University poll finds. But voters approve 58 - 26 percent of their own State Senator and 61 - 25 percent of their representative.

A total of 77 percent of voters say property tax reduction is "very important" or "somewhat important" in deciding how they vote in the 2006 elections.

By a 48 - 29 percent margin, voters say they are inclined to be anti-incumbent in the 2006 state elections. But voters say 46 - 31 percent that their own Senator deserves reelection, and say 49 - 31 percent that their representative deserves reelection.

"Most Pennsylvania voters say reducing property taxes is critical to their vote in next year's legislative elections, but two thirds say they don't have much confidence in the legislature agreeing on a plan," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"While almost a majority say 'out with the incumbents,' only about a third say their own State Senator or representative does not deserve reelection."

"And voters are evenly divided, 46 - 46 percent, on whether their lawmakers should be defeated because they originally voted for the pay raise and later voted for its repeal," Richards added.

Looking at the property tax issue, Pennsylvania voters approve 54 - 39 percent of the proposal by Gov. Ed Rendell and the Democrats to use money gained from slot machine gambling to pay for property tax reductions.

By a narrower 45 - 41 percent margin, voters approve of a Republican proposal to increase the state sales tax and other state taxes and use the money to cut property taxes.

Matching the proposals head to head, voters prefer the gambling option over the state tax hike option 55 - 35 percent.

"After a year of back and forth debate, Pennsylvania voters say using the payoff from slot machines is a better way to get the money to lower property taxes than by raising the sales tax and other state taxes," Richards said.

From November 30 - December 6, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,447 Pennsylvania voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.6 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida and the nation as a public service and for research.

For additional data-www.quinnipiac.edu and quicklinks

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

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 30% 30% 35% 24% 28% 31% Disapprove 57 57 54 62 63 53 DK/NA 13 13 11 14 9 16

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Approve 22% 43% 34% 29% 23% 24% 30% Disapprove 70 43 48 55 66 66 59 DK/NA 9 15 18 15 12 11 12

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

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Dec 8   Oct 5   Jul 14  Apr 21  Feb 17  Apr 10  Oct 5
                        2005    2005    2005    2005    2005    2003    2005 
                                                                             
Approve                 30      26      37      40      44      49      26   
Disapprove              57      60      47      39      33      24      60   
DK/NA                   13      14      16      21      24      27      14   




6. Do you approve or disapprove of the way your state senator is handling his or her job?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 58% 66% 58% 54% 56% 60% Disapprove 26 21 26 32 32 21 DK/NA 16 13 16 15 12 19

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Approve 58% 57% 67% 53% 56% 61% 58% Disapprove 31 25 16 24 32 29 28 DK/NA 11 18 18 23 12 9 14



7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way your state representative is handling his or her job?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 61% 62% 64% 56% 60% 61% Disapprove 25 25 23 30 30 21 DK/NA 14 13 13 14 10 17

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Approve 55% 69% 64% 61% 56% 56% 61% Disapprove 34 18 20 21 36 33 24 DK/NA 11 12 16 18 9 11 15



24. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in Pennsylvania today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Very satisfied 4% 4% 5% 3% 4% 4% Smwht satisfied 50 48 51 51 46 53 Smwht dissatisfied 33 35 32 30 35 32 Very dissatisfied 13 12 11 16 14 12 DK/NA 1 1 - - 1 -

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Very satisfied 3% 6% 3% 5% 2% 1% 4% Smwht satisfied 29 52 58 63 46 39 49 Smwht dissatisfied 47 30 28 23 32 46 35 Very dissatisfied 21 12 7 8 20 13 12 DK/NA - - 3 - - - -

TREND: In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in Pennsylvania today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?

                        Dec 8   Oct 5   Jul 14  Apr 21  Feb 17  Jul 13  Jun 24
                        2005    2005    2005    2005    2005    2004    2004  


Very satisfied 4 4 4 4 4 5 4 Smwht satisfied 50 42 48 49 52 51 52 Smwht dissatisfied 33 33 32 30 28 29 33 Very dissatisifed 13 20 15 15 15 14 11 DK/NA 1 1 1 1 1 1 1



25. Generally when it comes to next year's elections in Pennsylvania would you say your mood is anti-incumbent, meaning you're inclined to vote for challengers who are running for public office, or would you say your mood is pro-incumbent, meaning you're inclined to vote to re-elect people already in public office?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Anti-incumbent 48% 51% 41% 53% 50% 47% Pro-incumbent 29 28 36 25 28 31 DK/NA 22 21 22 23 23 22

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Anti-incumbent 58% 42% 42% 37% 58% 57% 51% Pro-incumbent 20 36 32 38 24 24 27 DK/NA 22 22 26 25 18 19 22



26. Looking ahead toward the 2006 elections for the state legislature - Do you feel that your state senator deserves to be reelected, or do you feel that he or she does not deserve to be reelected?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes/Reelected 46% 53% 42% 42% 45% 47% No/Not reelected 31 26 33 37 37 26 DK/NA 23 21 25 21 19 27

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Yes/Reelected 42% 44% 46% 46% 47% 46% 47% No/Not reelected 41 33 28 25 36 28 32 DK/NA 17 23 26 30 17 25 22



27. Looking ahead toward the 2006 elections for the state legislature - Do you feel that your state representative deserves to be reelected, or do you feel that he or she does not deserve to be reelected?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes/Reelected 49% 50% 52% 46% 46% 52% No/Not reelected 31 31 30 34 36 26 DK/NA 20 19 18 20 18 22

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Yes/Reelected 48% 60% 56% 45% 42% 48% 47% No/Not reelected 39 19 25 28 40 31 34 DK/NA 13 21 19 26 17 20 20



28. How important is property tax reduction in deciding who you will vote for in the 2006 elections, very important, somewhat important, a little important, or not important at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Very 51% 52% 56% 42% 50% 52% Somewhat 26 30 22 31 25 28 A Little 12 11 13 13 14 11 Not at all 9 7 8 13 10 8 DK/NA 2 1 1 2 1 2

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Very 53% 64% 52% 50% 44% 43% 49% Somewhat 28 11 25 29 30 31 28 A Little 10 10 14 12 9 15 13 Not at all 8 9 7 9 15 11 8 DK/NA 1 5 2 - 2 1 1



29. Do you approve or disapprove of the Republican plan to eliminate or reduce local property taxes and replace the lost revenue through increases in the sales tax and other state taxes?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 45% 64% 33% 44% 48% 42% Disapprove 41 23 52 46 39 43 DK/NA 14 13 14 10 12 15

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Approve 48% 42% 49% 34% 49% 43% 51% Disapprove 41 49 37 47 33 45 37 DK/NA 11 9 14 19 18 12 12



30. Do you approve or disapprove of the plan by Gov. Rendell and the Democrats to reduce local property taxes and replace the revenue through money gained from slot machine gambling?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 54% 43% 66% 52% 54% 54% Disapprove 39 50 26 41 39 38 DK/NA 7 7 7 7 6 8

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Approve 60% 64% 56% 55% 52% 46% 49% Disapprove 34 32 38 37 37 49 42 DK/NA 5 4 6 8 11 5 8



31. If you had a choice, would you rather see reductions in local property taxes replaced through increases in the sales tax and other state taxes or through money gained from slot machine gambling?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


State taxes 35% 51% 23% 36% 37% 34% Slot machines 55 40 68 56 54 57 DK/NA 9 8 8 8 9 10

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

State taxes 32% 27% 30% 31% 33% 45% 44% Slot machines 59 65 56 62 55 46 48 DK/NA 9 9 15 7 12 9 8



32. How confident are you that the current special session of the state legislature will agree on a plan to reduce local property taxes in Pennsylvania - very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident, or not confident at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Very 4% 4% 7% 1% 5% 4% Somewhat 27 25 31 23 24 30 Not too 43 42 42 47 39 46 Not at all 23 25 17 27 30 18 DK/NA 3 3 3 2 3 3

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Very 6% 12% 2% 3% 1% 3% 3% Somewhat 25 25 39 23 25 26 28 Not too 39 32 36 51 45 46 45 Not at all 28 25 21 20 28 23 22 DK/NA 1 7 3 3 1 2 3



33. As you may know, the state legislature voted itself a pay raise in July and then repealed it in November. If your state legislator voted for the pay raise in July and then voted to repeal it in November, would you vote against them next time they are up for reelection just because they voted for the pay raise in the first place?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes 46% 46% 45% 49% 50% 42% No 46 46 48 45 44 48 DK/NA 8 7 7 6 6 10

Alghny Philly NthEst SthEst NthWst SthWst Cntrl

Yes 47% 39% 42% 39% 63% 48% 48% No 46 54 49 54 30 40 44 DK/NA 7 7 9 7 7 12 8