Poll: Golden State not so golden
March 18, 2011
The Golden State has apparently lost its luster. California residents ranked their quality of life at its lowest mark in 20 years because of the continuing economic downturn. [San Francisco Chronicle]
The poll by UC Berkeley and Field, conducted in February, showed that only 39 percent considered the state “one of the best places to live,” compared with the glory days of 1985, when 78 percent gave the state the highest rating.
Californians’ self-assessment has gradually declined since then, with occasional spurts of optimism, until the appraisal rock-bottomed in 1992 at the tail end of a national recession.
Jon Christensen, the executive director of the Bill Lane Center for the American West at Stanford University, said while the poll reflected personal financial woes. Californians are also bothered by a dysfunctional state government mired in a budget crisis.
Most voters – 47 percent – said immigration had no real impact.
Yet of those who said immigration had changed California, 39 percent said it lowered their quality of life, while 10 percent said immigration made life here better.