In the Spotlight

News & Features
Poll: Budget Surplus
February 14, 2001

Poll Methodology | Story


Gov. Ventura and state legislators are debating what to do with a current and projected $3 billion state surplus. Which of the following statements comes closest to your view?

Option Response
The full surplus should be returned to taxpayers as tax cuts or rebates. 27%
The surplus should be divided between tax cuts and spending on such things as schools, roads and care for the elderly. 47%
The surplus should be used largely for increased spending for things like schools, roads and care for the elderly. 24%
Other/Not Sure (Not read) 2%


Gov. Ventura has proposed having the state pay more for education. His plan would lower property taxes but extend the sales tax to services like haircuts and attorneys fees. Do you favor or oppose this plan?

State Men Women
Favor 45% 48% 42%
Oppose 43% 42% 44%
Undecided 12% 10% 14%

The Mason-Dixon Poll was conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, Inc. of Washington, D.C. from February 5 through February 6, 2001. A total of 625 registered Minnesota voters were interviewed statewide by telephone. All stated they regularly vote in state elections.

Those interviewed were selected by the random variation of the last four digits of telephone numbers. A cross-section of exchanges were utilized in order to ensure an accurate reflection of the state. Quotas were assigned to reflect voter turn-out by county.

The margin for error, according to standards customarily used by statisticians, is no more than plus or minus 4 percentage points. This means that there is a 95 percent probability that the "true" figure would fall within that range if the entire population were sampled. The margin for error is higher for any subgroup, such as a regional or gender grouping.