The establishment in California is frantically trying to spin the latest poll numbers that show Gray Davis collapsing and Arnold surging, deploying all the usual poll-spinning tricks about sampling error, etc. But the reason why these numbers are likely correct arrived in the mail this week. Yesterday my car tax bill arrived. Last year's tax was $180; this year's: $425. That's for a 1996 SUV, my only car in California. If you have two or three cars in your household as do most California households (California has more registered vehicles than licensed drivers), imagine the sticker shock people are getting this week. In many cases the tax boost for a household with late model cars is probably something like $1200. No wonder Gray's chances are fading to black.
A similar thing happened with Proposition 13 in 1978. Polls showed the vote fairly close, until about three weeks before election day, when new property tax assessments (which had soared again) arrived in the mail. It was all over after that.
Tuesday, September 30, 2003
Steve Hayward has another explanation for why Davis may be tanking in the polls.
Posted by Betsy Newmark at 12:46 PM