NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A new poll finds that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio continues to have a mixed approval rating – but 48 percent respondents did not want him reelected.
A Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday found that the first-term mayor had a 45 percent approval rating.
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In the poll, 48 percent of voters surveyed also said the mayor deserves a second term, while 42 percent did not. De Blasio is up for re-election in 2017.
As CBS2 Political Reporter Marcia Kramer reported, de Blasio said he was starting to raise money for reelection partly because people have started talking about potential challengers.
But currently, Kramer reported, the issue is not challengers, but challenges.
Strolling through a Staten Island neighborhood that was hard-hit by Superstorm Sandy three years ago Thursday, the mayor was smiling and genial. But a new poll was nothing to rejoice about, as it showed many want him to be a one-term mayor like his mentor, David Dinkins.
The poll came out the very day he started his reelection fundraising effort, in a message to those who would oppose him.
“It’s an informal beginning,” de Blasio said. “Obviously, people who weren’t me started the discussion over the last few months of the future, so we wanted to let them that know I was resolute about coming back and continuing to serve the people.”
The poll was taken after the murder of NYPD Detective Randolph Holder in East Harlem, and while the city was still mourning his loss. In fact, Kramer reported, one of the mayor’s problems may be public safety – since murders are up, and so are the killings of police officers.
Holder is the fourth officer killed in the past 11 months.
Thus, it was not a surprise when de Blasio used Holder’s funeral to demand stiffer federal gun laws. But since he cannot force Washington, D.C. to rein in the National Rifle Association, Kramer asked him what he could do right in the city to stop the flow of guns.
“We are resolute. What we’ve already been doing — between the Police Department, the district attorneys, and my Office of Criminal Justice — is trying to immediately figure out ways to more effectively work together on prosecutions,” de Blasio said.
But pundits said the mayor needs to focus more on the city.
“Stay home. Move around. Talk to people. Come up with initiatives that are practical — not big ideas – things like cleaning the street, fixing crime, moving the homeless,” said political consultant Hank Sheinkopf. “If not, it could be, as the Three Stooges used to say, ‘Curtains.’”
In the poll, 46 percent of voters disapproved of the mayor’s job performance.
On that front, his ratings largely held steady despite a rough summer that included bruising political fights with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Uber as well as worries about a rise in homelessness.
De Blasio, a Democrat, had a 44 percent approval rating in Quinnipiac’s previous poll, which was conducted in August.
The poll also showed New Yorkers questioning de Blasio’s leadership. A total of 52 percent said he does not have strong leadership qualities, while 44 percent said he does.
There continues to be a strong racial divide in how the mayor is viewed. Seventy-one percent of blacks and 51 percent of Hispanics approved of the job he’s doing, while 65 percent of white voters diapproved.
The poll took an early look at de Blasio against some of his potential challenges. De Blasio easily leads the pack for the Democratic nomination with 41 percent, followed by city Comptroller Scott Stringer (13 percent), Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (7 percent) and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito (4 percent). Twenty-seven percent were undecided.
“About half of New York City voters don’t want four more years of Mayor Bill de Blasio, but it’s the old political story: You can’t beat somebody with nobody,” Quinnipiac University Poll Assistant Director Maurice Carroll said in a news release. “Comptroller Scott Stringer matches de Blasio on job approval, but trails him in a theoretical 2017 Democratic primary match-up.”
In a general election, de Blasio had support from 48 percent of those surveyed, while 28 percent indicated they’d vote for former police Commissioner Ray Kelly, running as an independent and 6 percent said they’d support Republican Michel Faulkner. Thirteen percent were undecided.
The poll had a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points.
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