Days Before Election, California’s Prop. 1 Sinks to 50 Percent in LA Times Poll  

Photo by Sigmund on Unsplash

By Shriya Kali Chittapuram

SACRAMENTO, CA – California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Prop. 1—proposed to support housing for vulnerable populations and fund mental health services—is close to failing with recent pre-election polls suggesting about 50 percent of voters support arguments the measure is expensive and potentially unsuccessful, according to the LA Times.

Paul Simmons, a director of Californians Against Prop. 1, said, “Prop. 1 stinks to high heaven, and the voters’ noses are working just fine. This measure can be and should be defeated. The next few days are critical.

“No matter where you stand politically,” Simmons continued, “there’s something in Prop. 1 to hate. Whether it’s the cost, or the track record of failure, or the fact that Prop. 1 hurts people who are getting mental health services now, there are flashing red lights everywhere.”

The mission statement as shown in Prop. states: “Californians Against Prop. 1 is a broad, nonpartisan coalition of people, including those who provide and receive local and statewide mental health services. We are concerned with the many issues raised by the Prop., from the bond itself to the many complex changes to the state’s system of delivery of services to vulnerable, and often marginalized, populations.”

As reported by the website, Prop. 1 goes against the promises made by voters when they originally passed the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) in 2004.

The MHSA was designed to establish genuine funding for mental health services that had been neglected. This included programs for prevention, early intervention, youth, and marginalized populations, such as diverse racial and ethnic groups and LGBTQ individuals.

According to, MHSA has been a successful model in the past and has provided services for those in need. However, opponents state, Prop. 1 would significantly reduce this funding, removing its commitment to mental health programs and severely impacting numerous programs across California that rely on MHSA funding to survive. It requires counties to achieve more with fewer resources. also states that despite supporters boasting about creating a multi-billion-dollar program without new taxes, this was accomplished through costly bonds and diverting funds from existing programs.

The poll which was  conducted by the Institute for Governmental Studies on March 1, revealed that only 50 percent of “likely” voters support Prop. 1, with 34 percent opposed and 16 percent undecided—although undecided voters tend to lean towards a “no” vote, as reported by the LA Times.

The survey also highlighted that nearly 80 percent of “likely voters” had yet to cast their ballots, with Prop. 1 only garnering 49 percent support among those who hadn’t voted yet.

Moreover, the survey showed, said the Times, the group of voters seemingly skewed towards older, white, and predominantly Republican and conservative compared to the broader California voting population.

This trend is highlighted by the mere 22 percent backing from the Republican voters for Prop. 1, emphasizing its challenges due to the reduced voter participation, with opposition from both party affiliations, said the Times.

The most recent poll results reported by the LA Times align with last week’s survey showing only 51 percent of voters believed it was a “good time” for a costly bond like the one included in Prop. 1 (Public Policy Institute of California, Feb. 23).

Simmons added, “Our job for the final days is just to continue getting the facts out about the cost and damage threatened by Prop. 1. If Prop. 1 does go down, as we hope it will, the reasons why will all come down to poor strategy and decision-making by the governor.”

About The Author

Shriya, known as Kali, Chittapuram is in her final year at UC Riverside majoring in Psychology with a minor in Law & Society. Kali has had a huge passion for law since high school, and aspires to attend law school in the near future to study Film & Entertainment law. In her free time, Kali loves to write, draw, and even act in films and theater.

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