Politics & Cars Do Mix: SUV Drivers Support Arnold While McClintock Captures Votes From Luxury Vehicle Owners

Link Also Seen Between What Candidates Drive and What Their Supporters Drive

IRVINE, Calif.

A new study regarding the opinions of the California gubernatorial recall election was released today by automotive information resource, Kelley Blue Book. The company administered the poll on their Web site (www.kbb.com) to determine how people plan to vote in this month's recall election based on what they drive.

Poll results, which closely mimic this week's popular polls, show nearly two-thirds of car owners plan to recall California Governor Gray Davis on October 7. Support for the recall is highest among SUV and pick-up owners (71 percent), followed by sedan owners (65 percent). Minivan and station wagon drivers are split on the issue with 56 percent supporting the recall. According to Kelley Blue Book executive Stephen Henson, "It's possible that the tripling of California's vehicle registration fee is driving voters toward a 'Total Recall.'"

The study also showed that voters may support candidates with similar cars to their own.

When it comes to vehicle owners and their voting intentions, it may be no surprise that Arnold Schwarzenegger commands the greatest level of support from SUV drivers in next week's election as well as the heftiest amount of votes overall (41 percent). During his brief campaign, the actor has been seen on television in such behemoth SUVs as the Hummer and ultra-hip Mercedes G 500.

Another interesting fact from the poll finds conservative Republican legislator, Tom McClintock gathering support among Mercedes e-class and other luxury vehicle drivers after vowing not to raise taxes among the upper-class.

California's current lieutenant governor, Cruz Bustamante is garnering his highest level of support from California's sedan driving community which includes Camry and Accord drivers across the state. This too is consistent with Bustamante's own vehicle, a Ford Crown Victoria.

Also running in this election is Green Party candidate, Peter Camejo. Camejo's camp, according to the poll, is filled with soccer moms in minivans. However, Camejo himself is "keeping it green" by driving a Honda Civic gas-electric Hybrid vehicle which gets up to 50 miles per gallon highway.

Other candidates finding support in the Kelley Blue Book poll include journalist and activist Arianna Huffington, who dropped out of the race on September 30. Her decision to leave the race may have been due to lack of support since she only received once percent of the overall vote in the Kelley Blue Book poll.

Famed Hustler publisher Larry Flynt, also in the gubernatorial race, is drawing support from pickup truck drivers, like the Ford F-150s and Chevy Silverados most recently seen out front of his boutique 'Hustler Hollywood.'

Adult film star Mary Carey Cook and former child star Gary Coleman were able to find only two California drivers apiece to park in their prospective lots. And unfortunately, candidate and comedian Gallagher, running on the 'Party' Party platform could not garner support from anyone who knew how to drive in the state of California.

Raw Voting Percentages/Candidates received their highest level of support from owners of ...

   41.4%     Arnold Schwarzenegger:  non-luxury imports, SUVs
   27.1%     Tom McClintock:  luxury vehicles, pickups
   25.5%     Cruz Bustamante:  non-luxury imports, sedans
   2%        Peter Camejo:  non-luxury imports, minivan/station wagons
   1.6%      Arianna Huffington:  luxury vehicles, sedans
   1.4%      Larry Flynt:  non-luxury domestics, pickups
   .4%       Mary "Mary Carey" Cook:  luxury vehicles, sedans
   .4%       Gary Coleman:  non-luxury domestics, pickups
   0%        Gallagher:  had no support

The KBB gubernatorial recall study was administered on the company's Web site www.kbb.com, the No. 1 Internet site among car-buyers. Survey respondents included only car owners and drivers in the state of California. The study was completed over a seven day period at the end of September 2003 to determine correlations between what people are driving and how they intend to vote in California's recall election.

About Kelley Blue Book (kbb.com)

Kelley Blue Book is the most trusted vehicle information resource by both consumers and the auto industry, providing research tools and up-to-date pricing on thousands of new and used vehicles, including the company's New Car Blue Book Value, which reveals what a new car is actually selling for. Since 1926, car buyers and sellers have relied upon Kelley Blue Book for authoritative and unbiased information to make well-informed automotive decisions. The company reports vehicle prices and values via products and services including the famous Blue Book Official Guide™, software and Internet site, kbb.com. Kbb.com has been rated the No. 1 automotive information site by Nielsen//NetRatings as well as No. 1 and first visited automotive site by J.D. Power and Associates five years running. No other medium reaches more in-market car-buyers than kbb.com; one in every four American car-buyers complete their research on kbb.com.

SOURCE: Kelley Blue Book

CONTACT: Robyn Eckard of Kelley Blue Book, +1-949-770-7704, ext. 8349,

Web site: http://www.kbb.com/

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