7/25: Quinn Reclaims Lead from Weiner in Democratic Primary… Should Weiner Drop Out? Dems Divide
In light of new revelations that Anthony Weiner continued to engage in lewd online behavior after he resigned from Congress two years ago, Weiner now trails Christine Quinn in the Democratic primary for New York City mayor. In this first poll conducted entirely after the latest scandalous details emerged, Quinn now outdistances Weiner by 9 percentage points.
- 25% Christine Quinn
- 16% Anthony Weiner
- 14% Bill de Blasio
- 14% Bill Thompson
- 7% John Liu
- 2% Erick Salgado
- 1% Sal Albanese
- 2% Other
- 19% Undecided
POLL MUST BE SOURCED: NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll*
“For many Democrats the latest revelations about Anthony Weiner are more of the same, only more so,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “Weiner has lost his lead and his negatives are at an all-time high.”
There has been a 14 percentage point swing in the contest between Quinn and Weiner. As noted, Quinn leads Weiner by 9 percentage points. When the NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll last reported this question in June, Weiner — 25% — edged Quinn — 20% — by 5 percentage points among New York City Democrats including those who were undecided yet leaning toward a candidate. Bill Thompson received the support of 13%. At that time, 10% backed Bill de Blasio while 8% were for John Liu. Erick Salgado had the support of 2%, and 1% was behind Sal Albanese. One percent backed another candidate, and 18% were undecided.
Among Democrats who are likely to vote in September’s primary, 26% are for Quinn compared with 17% for de Blasio who is in a statistical tie for second with Weiner at 16% and Thompson with 15%. Liu has the backing of 7%, Salgado garners 2%, and 1% is for Albanese. Two percent support another candidate, and 15% are undecided.
How committed to their choice of candidate are New York City Democrats with their candidate preference? 42% say they strongly support their choice. 32% are somewhat behind their pick while 23% might vote differently. Three percent are unsure.
Last month, 36% of Democrats with a candidate preference reported they were firmly in their candidate’s camp. 38% were somewhat behind their pick, and 23% thought they might change their minds before Election Day. Three percent, at the time, were unsure.
Democrats who are for Weiner — 52% — are still more committed to their choice of candidate than backers of the other leading contenders. 37% of Quinn’s supporters strongly support her. 35% of Thompson’s backers have a similar intensity of support, and 33% of Democrats behind de Blasio are firmly committed to their candidate. In June, 45% of Weiner’s supporters said they strongly supported him. This compares with 34% of Quinn’s backers who expressed a similar intensity of support. Results for Thompson and de Blasio are not available for the previous poll.
Weiner’s Negative Rating Soars
There has been a dramatic shift in Democrats’ impressions of Anthony Weiner from a similar poll conducted last month before the latest online sexual relationship came to light. In the current survey, a majority of Democrats citywide have an unfavorable impression of Anthony Weiner. 55% have this view while three in ten — 30% — have a favorable opinion of the candidate. 15% have either never heard of him or are unsure how to rate him. This represents the highest negative rating Anthony Weiner has received this election season.
In last month’s NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll, a majority of New York City Democrats — 52% — had a favorable view of Weiner while 36% had an unfavorable opinion of him. 11%, at the time, had either never heard of him or were unsure how to rate him.
“New York City Democrats were willing to give Anthony Weiner a second chance but are reluctant to excuse his behavior now,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.
Democrats Divide Over Future of Weiner’s Candidacy
Despite the tawdry details of Weiner’s online sexual relationships, Weiner vows to fight on in his quest to become the next mayor of New York City. But, do Democrats citywide want Weiner to remain in the race? 47% do while 43% want him to drop out of the contest. 10% are unsure.
What would the race look like without Weiner? Quinn outpaces her closest competitor, Thompson, by 15 percentage points.
Among registered Democrats in New York City, including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate, if the Democratic primary were held today, here is how the contest would stand without Anthony Weiner:
- 32% Christine Quinn
- 17% Bill Thompson
- 16% Bill de Blasio
- 9% John Liu
- 2% Erick Salgado
- 1% Sal Albanese
- 2% Other
- 20% Undecided
Among Democrats who are likely to vote in September’s primary, 32% support Quinn compared with 20% for de Blasio. 18% are behind Thompson while Liu receives the support of 9%. Two percent back Salgado while 1% is for Albanese. Two percent support another candidate, and 17% are undecided.
Do Weiner’s Online Sexcapades Matter to Democrats?
46% of New York City Democrats say Weiner’s online sexual relationships will impact their vote. Included here are 33% who report Weiner’s activities will matter a great deal to their decision and 13% who say Weiner’s actions will matter a good amount. 49%, however, say these activities matter little or not at all when deciding their vote. This includes 14% who say these revelations matter a little and 35% who say they don’t matter at all. Five percent are unsure.
Anthony Weiner is not the only politician seeking forgiveness from the public. Following a prostitution scandal that forced him out of office, former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer is running for New York City comptroller. However, Democrats citywide find Weiner’s behavior more egregious than Spitzer’s actions.
When NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist asked Democrats earlier this month if Spitzer’s sex scandal would impact their vote, only 34% believed it would have an effect on how they cast their ballot, and 62% reported it would matter little or not at all. Five percent were unsure.
A Matter of Trust? Abedin’s Support Does Little to Help Weiner
In a press conference on Tuesday, Huma Abedin, Anthony Weiner’s wife, publicly supported her husband and said she had forgiven him. However, her commitment does little to help Weiner’s electoral chances. Almost three in four Democrats — 73% — report Abedin’s support has no impact on how much trust they have in Weiner to be mayor. 15% say her backing makes them more likely to trust him while 12% say it makes them less likely to do so.
Have Weiner’s Chances Run Out?
Can New York City Democrats move beyond Weiner’s salacious activities and give him another chance? Again, there is a divide. 47% believe Weiner deserves another chance in the public arena while 45% disagree and say he does not have the character to be mayor. Nine percent are unsure.
When Marist last reported a similar question in May, 59% of Democrats thought Weiner should be given a second chance. 35% said he did not have the character to be mayor, and 6% were unsure.
Democrats are more willing to grant redemption to Eliot Spitzer. Two weeks ago, 67% said Spitzer deserved another chance while one in four — 25% — believed he did not have the character to be comptroller. Eight percent, at that time, were unsure.
Just Four in Ten Think Weiner Would Do Well as Mayor
Just 40% of Democrats citywide think Weiner would do an excellent or good job as mayor. This includes 15% who say he would be an excellent mayor and 25% who report he would be a good one. 47% do not think he would excel as mayor, including 19% who believe he would do a fair job in the office while more than one in four — 28% — predict he would perform poorly in City Hall. 13% are unsure.
Once again, New York City Democrats express more faith in Eliot Spitzer. In NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist’s early July survey, 57% thought Spitzer would do either an excellent — 18% — or good — 39% — job as comptroller. 19% reported he would do a fair job, and 12% said he would fall short. 12%, then, were unsure.
Spitzer with 17 Percentage Point Lead in the Race for NYC Comptroller
Where does the contest for New York City comptroller stand? Spitzer — 49% — leads Scott Stringer — 32% — by 17 percentage points among registered Democrats in New York City including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate. Two percent support another candidate, and 17% are undecided.
Spitzer’s lead has widened. Earlier this month, 42% of Democrats supported Spitzer while 33% were for Stringer. One percent backed another candidate, and 24% were undecided.
Among Democrats who are likely to vote in September’s primary, 48% support Spitzer compared with 36% for Stringer. One percent supports another candidate, and 14% are undecided. Last time, Spitzer led Stringer 44% to 36% among Democrats likely to vote on Primary Day.