With 89 days until Election Day, Joe Biden has built a lead of historic proportions in California.
At the same time, the coronavirus pandemic is underscoring the wide partisan divide in the state, with whom you are supporting for president revealing a lot about how you feel about COVID-19. The latest polling also reinforces the disproportionate impact of the virus, on Californians of color, with Blacks and Latinos far more affected than whites.
For more on all of this, we were joined on KCBS Radio’s "The State Of California" by Professor Eric Schickler, Co-Director of the UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies.
We definitely see strong relationship between attitudes towards Trump and how voters see the COVID-19 pandemic and how they’re experiencing it. We see that those disapproving of Trump’s handling of COVID-19 are much less likely to support him. I think we’ve seen a real erosion in Trump’s already low support in this state since this pandemic started.
When it comes to no-party preference voters in the state, they’re leaning pretty strongly towards Biden. You see among those voters a lot of disapproval of the president’s handling of the pandemic and concern about COVID-19.
His support has always been quite low. We’re seeing for the first time in the current poll is a further erosion. We’re seeing moderate conservatives and some voters in the Central Valley flipping away from the president. So those that had been sticking with him, had been eroding just a little bit, but noticeably over the last couple of months.
We see some pretty striking differences across racial groups. First of all, how much has this affected your financial situation? How do you feel like your personal and family health has been affected by the virus? We see the highest rates of concern among Latinos, followed by Blacks and then Asian Americans. Whites, in general, are seeing much less impact and risk for themselves.
That was one of the most striking findings for me as well. It really seems like partisanship matters a lot for that, Democrats and Republicans are seeing it much differently. But, parents and non-parents are seeing the same world and seeing the same kind of trade-off between keeping kids safe in general and the pull of trying to get some return to normalcy.