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AARP AARP States California Voters

She's the Difference: California Results

She's the Difference: California, a statewide survey of women voters ages 40-plus

En español | She’s the Difference: California is a statewide survey that examines the priorities and concerns of women voters ages 40-plus.

Conducted in late 2023 with 1,611 participants, the survey explores views on voting and electoral priorities, housing, long-term care, financial security and federal programs such as Medicare and Social Security.

These are the results.
Read the Detailed Findings

She’s the Difference California Survey Summary

Fact Sheet 

On Voting

Women voters ages 40-plus want their voices heard. Nearly 80% are highly motivated to vote and are driven by a desire for change and new leadership, a range of issues and to make their voice heard.

California women are concerned over a number of issues.

·       Threats to democracy (85%)
·       Voting rights (84%)
·       Jobs and the economy (84%)
·       Education (83%)
·       Division in the country (82%)

On Candidates

When evaluating a candidate, women have key considerations. 92 percent say a candidate’s values are very important, followed by experience (77%), and political party or ideology (75%). Fewer than half say that a candidate’s family, personal attributes, and religion are very important factors.

On Financial Stability and Retirement

Women voters express widespread financial unease with 49% say they are less financially secure than they expected at this age and 31% are worried about being able to afford their home in the coming year. The most helpful financial support now and in the future includes lowering the cost of food (92%), protecting Social Security (89%), lowering the cost of utilities (87%), decreasing taxes (86%), and lowering the cost of healthcare (82%).

Few say Social Security, savings and retirement will fully cover their financial needs, yet a majority of women voters expect to rely on these sources of income. Only 25% say Social Security will fully cover their expenses, while 48% say it will partially cover them.

On Aging

In the context of aging, women voters are concerned about healthcare and financial stability. 71 percent are concerned about affordable healthcare and 68% are worried about access to affordable long-term care and only 15% are confident about their ability to pay for it.


On behalf of AARP, Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates conducted a survey of 1,611 California women voters ages 40 and over regarding election, policy, and social issues in California. This survey has a margin of error of ± 3.1 percent and includes oversamples of LGBTQ+ voters, Latina voters, Asian American and Pacific Islander voters, and African American voters. She’s the Difference: California builds upon ongoing AARP national research that explores the attitudes, fears, and hopes of over 2,000 women voters across the country.
For media inquiries, contact Priscilla Orpinela-Segura at  
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