July 25, 2013 - Spitzer-Stringer Horse Race In NYC Dem Primary, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Sexcapades Don't Disqualify Spitzer, Women Voters Say

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Former Gov. Eliot Spitzer and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer are in a tight race for New York City comptroller among Democratic likely primary voters, with 49 percent for Spitzer and 45 percent for Stringer, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Stringer supporters are more committed as 73 percent of those backing him say they definitely will vote for him, compared to 61 percent of Spitzer supporters. This is the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University's first survey of likely voters in this race and can not be compared to earlier surveys of registered voters.

In the matchup, men are divided with 49 percent for Spitzer and 46 percent for Stringer. Women also are divided with 48 percent for Spitzer and 44 percent for Stringer.

There is a wide racial gap as white Democrats back Stringer 56 - 38 percent while black voters back Spitzer 63 - 33 percent.

"Among Democratic primary likely voters, who are assumed to be more informed, former Gov. Eliot Spitzer and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer are in a real race" said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "Despite criticism of Spitzer from women leaders and groups, women voters remain about evenly divided.

"Both candidates' supporters seemed to be fairly well locked in, but Stringer has more committed supporters."

The scandal surrounding Spitzer's resignation as governor is a legitimate issue in the campaign for comptroller, Democratic likely primary voters say 53 - 44 percent.

This behavior disqualifies him as a candidate, 25 percent of Democrats say, while 40 percent say it is a factor but does not disqualify him and 32 percent say it's not a factor.

There is a small gender gap among all registered voters on this question: Among women, 28 percent say Spitzer's behavior disqualifies him, while 39 percent say it's a factor but does not disqualify him and 28 percent say it's not a factor.

Among men, 29 percent say it disqualifies him while 33 percent say it's a factor but doesn't disqualify him and 34 percent say it's not a factor.

"Spitzer's resignation as governor after he turned up as a prostitute's 'Client 9' is a legitimate issue, voters say, but they don't think it disqualifies him as a candidate," Carroll said.

From July 18 - 23, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,340 New York City registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points. The survey includes 507 Democratic likely primary voters with a margin of error of +/- 4.4 percentage points. Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones.

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

For more information, visit http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling, or call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter.

6. (If Registered Democrat) If the Democratic primary for City Comptroller were being held today, and the candidates were Eliot Spitzer and Scott Stringer, for whom would you vote? (If undecided) As of today, do you lean more toward Spitzer or Stringer (Table includes leaners)
                     LIKELY DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY VOTERS
                     Tot    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Spitzer              49%    49%    48%    38%    63%
Stringer             45     46     44     56     33
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       -      -      1      -      1
DK/NA                 6      4      8      6      2
 
 
6a. (If candidate chosen q6) Will you definitely vote for (Candidate of choice q6), or is there a chance you could change your mind and vote for (Candidate not chosen q6)? IF CHANCE CHANGE MIND: Would you say there's a good chance you'll change your mind, or would you say it's pretty unlikely?
                     LIKELY DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY VOTERS
                            CANDIDATE OF CHOICE Q6
                     Tot    Spitzr Stringer
 
Def vote for cand    67%    61%    73%
Change likely        19     23     15
Change unlikely      12     13     10
DK/NA                 3      3      3
 
 
43. As you may know, Eliot Spitzer resigned as governor after conceding that he'd paid for sex with prostitutes. Regardless of whether or not you support him, do you think this is or is not a legitimate issue in the election for city comptroller?
                     REGISTERED VOTERS.....................    LIKELY VOTERS
                     Tot    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp    Dem    Rep
 
Legitimate issue     54%    54%    54%    66%    43%    48%    53%    79%
Not legitimate issue 42     43     42     32     56     45     44     19
DK/NA                 4      3      4      2      1      7      3      2
 
 
44. Regardless of your vote preference, for you, would you say that Spitzer's behavior disqualifies him from consideration as a candidate for comptroller, it's a factor but not a disqualifying one, or it's not a factor in considering him as a candidate?
                     REGISTERED VOTERS.....................    LIKELY VOTERS
                     Tot    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp    Dem    Rep
 
Disqualifies him     28%    29%    28%    35%    17%    29%    25%    53%
Factor/Not disqualfy 36     33     39     39     41     26     40     33
Is not a factor      31     34     28     25     39     36     32     13
DK/NA                 4      4      5      1      3     10      3      1
 
 
 

Demographic Summary