The race for New York City mayor is in the homestretch, and if today were Election Day, Mayor Michael Bloomberg would handily win a third term. Bloomberg currently leads Democratic challenger Bill Thompson — 53% to 38% — among likely voters including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate. Bloomberg’s lead among likely voters is consistent with the results of a Marist survey last week when Bloomberg received 52% to Thompson’s 36%.
Looking at political party, 45% of likely Democratic voters report they will back Bloomberg on Tuesday while 47% say they will support Thompson. On the Republican side, 74% of likely GOP voters are behind Bloomberg compared with 17% for Thompson. 60% of non-enrolled voters back Bloomberg, and 27% say they will cast their ballot for Thompson.
Among registered voters citywide, Bloomberg leads Thompson, 48% to 37%, a difference of 11 percentage points. Last week, Bloomberg garnered 47% of registered voters’ support while Thompson received 38%, a gap of 9 percentage points.
Table: 2009 Race for Mayor in New York City — Likely Voters Including Leaners
Table: 2009 Race for Mayor in New York City — Registered Voters
Click Here for Complete October 30, 2009 NYC Poll Release and Tables
Three-Quarters of Likely Voters Strongly Committed to Candidate
75% of likely voters citywide say they will not waver when it comes to their choice of candidate. An additional 20% report, regardless of whom they are planning to support, they are somewhat committed to their pick, and just 4% say they might change their minds before Tuesday.
The proportion of likely voters who strongly back their choice of candidate has grown since Marist last asked voters about their intensity of support. Last week, 65% said they will definitely not change their vote come Election Day. At that time, 26% were somewhat behind their candidate, and 8% reported they might change their vote.
Both Bloomberg and Thompson currently enjoy firm backing from their respective supporters. 77% of Bloomberg’s supporters and 73% of Thompson’s backers say they are firmly committed to their candidate. Last week, those proportions were 71% for Bloomberg and 57% for Thompson.
A Tale of Two Candidates’ Favorability Ratings
Mayor Bloomberg’s favorability rating is on solid ground. 61% of registered voters say they have a positive view of the mayor while 32% of voters report they have an unflattering opinion of the mayor. These proportions are little changed from Marist’s previous poll when 63% rated the mayor favorably and 33% had a negative perception of him.
Bill Thompson’s favorability ratings have also not changed significantly since last week. 44% of voters maintain a positive impression of the comptroller, and 31% hold him in a negative light. 25% say they are either unsure how to rate him or have never heard of him. Last time, 47% viewed Thompson favorably, 33% held a negative impression of him, and 20% were unsure how to rate him.
Voters Care About Term Limits, But Does It Make a Difference?
Mayor Bloomberg’s action to extend term limits from two to three terms is not a deciding factor for 45% of voters. Although a large proportion of voters — 43% — says it makes them less likely to vote for the mayor, this number has not grown through the course of the campaign. 9% report his action will make them more likely to vote for him.