California As gas prices remain above $4 a gallon, Californians are more open to the idea of off-shore drilling for oil than they have been in the past.
A slim majority - 51 percent to 45 percent - approve of offshore drilling, according to a survey by the Public Policy Institute of California. It's the first time since PPIC began asking the question in 2003 that more residents favor drilling than oppose. Just a year ago, only 41 percent favored drilling.
Still, the issue appears driven by partisan inclinations. More than three-quarters - 77 percent - of Republicans support offshore oil drilling, up from 60 percent a year ago. Only 35 percent of Democrats approve drilling, but that's also up, from 29 percent a year ago. Less than half of independents - 44 percent are in favor, up from 33 percent last year.
"With oil drilling being a politicized issue this year, it's not surprising that the bulk of growth occurred among Republicans," said Sonja Petek, the project manager for the survey.