January 27, 2009 - Voters Opppose 3 - Term Limit, But Want Bloomberg, Quinnipiac University New York City Poll Finds; Weiner Tops Thompson, But Many Dems Undecided

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New York City voters oppose the extension of term limits to three four-year terms and they want to roll term limits back to two terms, but they approve 69 - 25 percent of the job Mayor Michael Bloomberg is doing and give him double-digit leads over likely Democratic challengers, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Mayor Bloomberg's approval is up from a 66 - 27 percent grade in a November 25, 2008, poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University and puts him back on a track of 69 percent or higher approval ratings in every other poll since he began his second term.

If the 2009 mayoral election were held today:
  • Bloomberg tops New York City Comptroller William Thompson 50 - 34 percent;
  • Bloomberg beats U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner 50 - 35 percent.
Weiner tops Thompson in a Democratic primary 30 - 23 percent, with 47 percent undecided.

"Mayor Mike is riding high as the election year starts. He's got the job. He's got the money. And he's got comfortable early leads over the two Brooklyn Democrats who want his job," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"There seems to be a generic one-third vote for Democrats: It's identical for Weiner and Thompson. Bloomberg crosses the 50 percent mark to lead either of them."

By a 66 - 28 percent margin, New York City voters have a favorable opinion of Bloomberg. Weiner gets a 34 - 10 percent favorability, but 54 percent don't know enough about him to form an opinion. Thompson gets a 25 - 5 percent favorability, but 69 percent don't know enough about him.

"It's not that New Yorkers don't like Weiner or Thompson. They just don't know much about them," Carroll said. "That's probably why the big winner in a Democratic primary - almost a majority - is 'don't know.' Among those who do know, Weiner is ahead by a bit."

New York City voters support term limits for elected officials 69 - 25 percent, and disapprove 56 - 42 percent of the City Council action to extend term limits, an act that allows Bloomberg and the Council members to run for a third term. Voters say 61 - 33 percent that the limit of two four-year terms should be restored after the 2009 election.

"Term limits? We love them and we want them back - after we reelect Bloomberg," Carroll added.

In the Weiner-Bloomberg matchup, Bloomberg takes Republicans 67 - 22 percent and gets 44 percent of Democrats to Weiner's 42 percent. Independent voters go 59 - 24 percent for Bloomberg. White voters back Bloomberg 58 - 28 percent, as do Hispanics, 50 - 37 percent, while blacks back Weiner 45 - 38 percent.

Facing Thompson, Bloomberg leads 67 - 19 percent among Republicans and ties 42 - 42 percent with Democrats, while independent voters go to Bloomberg 62 - 20 percent. The Mayor leads 60 - 23 percent among white voters and 45 - 39 percent among Hispanics, while black voters back Thompson 50 - 34 percent.

Bloomberg's use of his own money to finance his campaign leaves him free of influence by lobbyists and special interests, 54 percent of New York City voters say, while 40 percent say it gives him an unfair advantage and looks like he is trying to buy reelection.

The Mayor should run for reelection as an independent candidate, 30 percent of voters say, while 23 percent want him to run as a Democrat; 10 percent want him to run as a Republican and 36 percent are undecided. Only 33 percent of Democrats want Bloomberg to campaign under their banner and only 36 percent of Republicans want him back in the GOP.

"There's a political saying that's trotted out for all wealthy candidates: He's too rich to be corrupt. It's a clich‚, but that's how New Yorkers feel about Mayor Mike.

From January 20 - 25, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,216 New York City registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 2.8 percentage points. The survey includes 796 Democrats with a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and nationwide as a public service and for research.

1. (If registered Democrat) As you may know, there will be a New York City mayoral election this year. Thinking about the Democratic primary for Mayor, if the 2009 Democratic primary for Mayor were being held today and the candidates were Anthony Weiner and William Thompson, for whom would you vote?
                     Dems    
 
Weiner               30%    
Thompson             23     
DK/NA                47     
 
2. If the 2009 election for Mayor were being held today, and the candidates were Anthony Weiner the Democrat and Michael Bloomberg the Independent, for whom would you vote?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Weiner               35%    22%    42%    24%    28%    45%    37%
Bloomberg            50     67     44     59     58     38     50
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      3      1      3      1      3      2
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      2      1      2      1      2      -
DK/NA                12      6     12     13     12     13     11
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Weiner               39%    39%    28%    37%    26%    32%    38%
Bloomberg            43     49     57     47     59     55     46
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      2      1      4      2      2      2
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      -      1      1      4      2      1
DK/NA                14     10     14     11      9     10     13
 
TREND: If the 2009 election for Mayor were being held today, and the candidates were Anthony Weiner the Democrat and Michael Bloomberg the Independent, for whom would you vote?
                     Jan 27 Nov 25
                     2009   2008
 
Weiner               35     34
Bloomberg            50     50
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      2
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      1
DK/NA                12     13
 
3. If the 2009 election for Mayor were being held today, and the candidates were William Thompson the Democrat and Michael Bloomberg the Independent, for whom would you vote?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Thompson             34%    19%    42%    20%    23%    50%    39%
Bloomberg            50     67     42     62     60     34     45
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      5      1      4      1      3      3
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      3      -      1      1      -      -
DK/NA                13      6     14     14     14     13     13
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Thompson             51%    31%    24%    36%    29%    28%    38%
Bloomberg            34     50     60     47     57     55     45
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       1      4      2      3      1      3      2
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      -      -      1      3      1      1
DK/NA                13     15     14     13     10     13     14
 
TREND: If the 2009 election for Mayor were being held today, and the candidates were William Thompson the Democrat and Michael Bloomberg the Independent, for whom would you vote?
                     Jan 27 Nov 25
                     2009   2008
 
Thompson             34     34
Bloomberg            50     49
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      1
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      1      2
DK/NA                13     14
 
 
4. Is your opinion of -- Michael Bloomberg favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Favorable            66%    72%    63%    73%    72%    58%    62%
Unfavorable          28     26     31     19     25     34     27
Hvn't hrd enough      3      1      4      4      1      5      6
REFUSED               3      1      3      3      2      3      5
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Favorable            61%    68%    72%    62%    62%    69%    63%
Unfavorable          30     28     22     30     33     26     29
Hvn't hrd enough      5      3      1      5      2      3      3
REFUSED               4      2      5      3      2      2      4
 
TREND: Is your opinion of -- Michael Bloomberg favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Jan 27 Nov 25
                     2009   2008
 
Favorable            66     61
Unfavorable          28     31
Hvn't hrd enough      3      4
REFUSED               3      3
 
 
5. Is your opinion of -- Anthony Weiner favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Favorable            34%    29%    36%    34%    39%    35%    24%
Unfavorable          10     21      7     10     15      4     10
Hvn't hrd enough     54     48     55     54     44     59     64
REFUSED               2      2      2      2      2      2      2
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Favorable            26%    37%    33%    37%    32%    37%    32%
Unfavorable           9     10      9     10     19     13      8
Hvn't hrd enough     63     51     56     50     47     48     58
REFUSED               2      2      2      3      2      2      2
 
TREND: Is your opinion of -- Anthony Weiner favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Jan 27 Nov 25
                     2009   2008
 
Favorable            34     31
Unfavorable          10     10
Hvn't hrd enough     54     57
REFUSED               2      2
 
 
6. Is your opinion of -- William Thompson favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Favorable            25%    11%    30%    20%    20%    38%    23%
Unfavorable           5     11      3      6      7      2      4
Hvn't hrd enough     69     73     66     72     72     60     68
REFUSED               2      5      1      2      1      -      6
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Favorable            34%    24%    21%    24%    25%    25%    24%
Unfavorable           3      4      4      5     14      6      4
Hvn't hrd enough     59     71     75     68     60     67     70
REFUSED               4      1      1      3      1      2      2
 
TREND: Is your opinion of -- William Thompson favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     Jan 27 Nov 25
                     2009   2008
 
Favorable            25     25
Unfavorable           5      4
Hvn't hrd enough     69     70
REFUSED               2      1
 
 
7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Michael Bloomberg is handling his job as Mayor?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              69%    73%    67%    73%    74%    69%    62%
Disapprove           25     24     27     18     22     26     29
DK/NA                 6      3      6      9      5      5     10
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              62%    71%    73%    66%    69%    72%    66%
Disapprove           32     23     19     26     27     21     28
DK/NA                 6      5      8      8      4      6      6
 
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Michael Bloomberg is handling his job as Mayor? (*also 75% on 10/03/08, 3/12/08, 1/16/07 & 11/17/05)
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 21  Oct 3   Jul 16  Oct 21  Jul 2
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2008*   2003
 
Approve              69      66      75      75      71      75     31
Disapprove           25      27      20      19      22      19     60
DK/NA                 6       7       6       6       6       6      8
 
 
8. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Ray Kelly is handling his job as Police Commissioner?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              67%    87%    63%    68%    80%    55%    57%
Disapprove           19      5     23     16      8     34     24
DK/NA                14      7     14     16     11     11     20
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              63%    69%    64%    68%    82%    72%    63%
Disapprove           23     17     20     18     12     18     19
DK/NA                15     14     16     14      6     10     17
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Ray Kelly is handling his job as Police Commissioner? (*also 70% on 2/3/06)
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7&8 Mar 9   Jan 16
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2006*   2007
 
Approve              67      62      61      60      59      70      52
Disapprove           19      23      25      27      30      17      34
DK/NA                14      16      14      13      11      13      14
 
 
9. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Joel Klein is handling his job as New York City Schools Chancellor?
                                                                      HvKids
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp   PubSch
                                                                            
Approve              43%    50%    42%    43%    45%    43%    39%    57%   
Disapprove           36     25     39     31     30     42     41     34    
DK/NA                21     25     19     25     24     15     20      9    
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              40%    40%    40%    51%    44%    48%    39%
Disapprove           44     36     33     31     44     30     41
DK/NA                16     23     27     18     12     22     20
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Joel Klein is handling his job as New York City Schools Chancellor?
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7   Feb 26  Mar 15
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2003    2007
 
Approve              43      43      42      44      37      46      33
Disapprove           36      35      38      37      41      27      43
DK/NA                21      22      20      19      22      28      24
 
 
10. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Betsy Gotbaum is handling her job as Public Advocate?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              43%    26%    49%    40%    40%    47%    44%
Disapprove           17     25     16     13     17     16     15
DK/NA                41     50     35     47     43     37     41
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              48%    42%    44%    37%    51%    39%    46%
Disapprove           16     15     14     19     25     18     15
DK/NA                36     44     41     44     23     43     39
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Betsy Gotbaum is handling her job as Public Advocate?
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7   Oct 3   Feb 26
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2008    2003
 
Approve              43      43      49      45      48      49      34
Disapprove           17      17      16      17      18      16      17
DK/NA                41      40      35      38      33      35      49
 
 
11. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Christine Quinn is handling her job as City Council Speaker?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              43%    36%    47%    40%    41%    47%    45%
Disapprove           23     34     20     22     27     21     19
DK/NA                34     30     32     38     33     32     36
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              44%    39%    47%    43%    49%    41%    45%
Disapprove           24     25     20     23     25     29     18
DK/NA                33     36     34     34     26     30     37
 
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Christine Quinn is handling her job as City Council Speaker?
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7   Mar 14  Nov 25
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2007    2008
 
Approve              43      40      48      44      43      51      40
Disapprove           23      29      22      25      30      12      29
DK/NA                34      31      29      31      27      37      31
 
 
12. Do you approve or disapprove of the way William Thompson is handling his job as City Comptroller?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              48%    39%    52%    45%    44%    62%    46%
Disapprove           12     13     12     11      9     10     19
DK/NA                40     48     36     45     48     28     35
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              60%    46%    42%    47%    49%    47%    48%
Disapprove           12     12     11     11     21     14     11
DK/NA                28     42     47     42     30     39     41
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way William Thompson is handling his job as City Comptroller?
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7   Oct 3   Feb 26
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2008    2003
 
Approve              48      48      53      51      51      53      35
Disapprove           12      12      13      13      16      13      13
DK/NA                40      40      34      36      33      34      52
 
 
13. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the City Council is handling its job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              41%    38%    43%    41%    41%    38%    47%
Disapprove           37     44     36     35     37     42     35
DK/NA                21     18     21     23     22     20     18
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              48%    41%    42%    36%    44%    39%    43%
Disapprove           33     37     35     41     46     43     33
DK/NA                19     22     23     23      9     18     24
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the City Council is handling its job? (*high also 50% on 3/13/08, **low also 41% 11/25/08)
                                                             Highest Lowest
                                                             Approve Approve
                     Jan 27  Nov 25  Oct 3   Jul 16  May 7   Oct 3   Jan 27
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2008    2008*   2009**  
                                                                           
Approve              41      41      50      43      47      50      41    
Disapprove           37      41      31      38      38      31      37    
DK/NA                21      19      18      18      16      18      21    
 
 
15. Generally speaking, do you favor or oppose setting limits on the number of years elected officials can hold office?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Favor                69%    76%    67%    69%    68%    66%    71%
Oppose               25     18     28     24     26     29     21
DK/NA                 6      5      6      7      5      5      8
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Favor                70%    69%    67%    66%    78%    69%    68%
Oppose               25     27     26     26     21     25     26
DK/NA                 5      4      7      8      1      6      6
 
TREND: Generally speaking, do you favor or oppose setting limits on the number of years elected officials can hold office?
                     Jan 27  Oct 21  Oct 3   Jul 16  Mar 1
                     2009    2008    2008    2008    2001
 
Favor                69      62      65      71      67
Oppose               25      29      29      23      28
DK/NA                 6       9       6       6       5
 
 
16. As you may know, the City Council extended term limits from two to three terms for New York City elected officials. Do you approve or disapprove of this extension of term limits?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Approve              42%    44%    39%    51%    44%    32%    45%
Disapprove           56     53     58     45     53     65     51
DK/NA                 3      2      3      3      3      3      4
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Approve              41%    40%    48%    38%    42%    38%    44%
Disapprove           55     58     50     57     58     60     52
DK/NA                 4      2      2      5      1      2      4
 
 
17. Do you think the two term limit should be restored after the 2009 New York City elections or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Yes                  61%    56%    64%    54%    59%    69%    59%
No                   33     39     30     39     36     23     35
DK/NA                 6      4      6      7      5      8      6
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Yes                  64%    65%    52%    63%    60%    59%    63%
No                   30     30     41     28     37     37     29
DK/NA                 6      5      7      8      3      4      8
 
 
18. Mayor Bloomberg has said that he is going to run for reelection and might run as an Independent, Republican, or Democrat. Would you like to see him run as an Independent, a Republican, or a Democrat?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
Independent          30%    22%    26%    51%    36%    26%    25%
Republican           10     36      5      9     14      8      8
Democrat             23     10     33      8     16     28     34
DK/NA                36     33     36     33     34     39     33
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
Independent          24%    29%    36%    29%    36%    35%    26%
Republican           10     13      7      9     14     11      9
Democrat             35     22     19     23     18     19     27
DK/NA                31     36     38     39     32     35     37
 
 
19. As you may know, Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent millions of dollars of his own money to be elected Mayor and says he will do the same in this year's race for Mayor. Which comes closer to your point of view A) By financing his own campaigns Bloomberg is free from being beholden to lobbyists and other special interests who would otherwise finance his campaign. OR B) By financing his own campaigns Bloomberg has an unfair advantage and looks like he is trying to buy the election?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Wht    Blk    Hisp
 
A) Free of special
   interests         54%    65%    49%    63%    60%    42%    51%
B) Unfair/Buying     40     28     45     32     33     50     44
   election
DK/NA                 6      7      6      5      7      7      4
 
                     Brnx   Kngs   Man    Qns    StIsl  Men    Wom
 
A) Free of special
   interests         45%    51%    62%    52%    62%    57%    51%
B) Unfair/Buying
   election          51     40     33     43     33     39     42
DK/NA                 4      9      4      5      6      5      7
 
 
TREND: As you may know, Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent millions of dollars of his own money to be elected Mayor and says he will do the same in this year's race for Mayor. Which comes closer to your point of view -- A) By financing his own campaigns Bloomberg is free from being beholden to B) By financing his own campaigns Bloomberg has an unfair advantage and looks
                     Jan 27  Mar 30 
                     2009    2005  
                                   
A) Free of special 
   interests         54      47    
B) Unfair/Buying
   election          40      45    
DK/NA                 6       8