The most interesting thing about the latest Field Poll, which (like a slew of other recent surveys) shows Democrat Barbara Boxer widening her lead over GOP challenger Carly Fiorina (in this case, by a hefty 8 percentage points), is the ethnic breakdown of the results. Like the Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Jerry Brown, Boxer enjoys huge leads among blacks, Latinos, Chinese- and Korean-Americans (Fiorina is slightly ahead among non-Latino whites). Unlike Brown, though, Boxer also leads among GOP-leaning Vietnamese-Americans, 40 percent to 26 percent. In a poll released Thursday, the same segment of voters favored Meg Whitman over Brown 37 percent to 26 percent. (The Field Poll, in partnership with New America Media, surveyed 1,500 registered voters in six languages in mid- to late-October.)

Other noteworthy points: Boxer owes much of her lead to independents (they favor her 49 percent to 32 percent), coastal dwellers (Fiorina leads overwhelmingly in the Central Valley and non-coastal Southland), and a Democratic wave that could buck national trends in this midterm election. Field Poll director Mark DiCamillo expects Democratic voters to outnumber Republicans by five points in the state.