12/23: Out with the Old and In with the New… NYC Voters Hopeful about de Blasio Administration, Change for the Better on the Way

When New York City Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio is sworn into office on January 1st, he will be greeted with great expectations from voters.  About two-thirds of registered voters in the city — 66% — are hopeful about de Blasio becoming the next mayor of New York City.  14% are content while 11% are disappointed.  Two percent describe themselves as angry, and 7% are unsure.

Click Here for Complete December 23, 2013 Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll NYC Release and Tables

POLL MUST BE SOURCED: Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll

“Coming off a huge election victory, expectations are sky high for what Bill de Blasio will do for the city as mayor,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “But, not all New Yorkers think that accomplishing his goals will be a slam dunk.”

By party, 72% of Democrats are hopeful about the incoming de Blasio administration.  However, Republicans citywide divide.  43% are hopeful while 40% are disappointed.  Nearly two-thirds of non-enrolled voters — 64% — are optimistic about de Blasio becoming mayor.

Regardless of borough, at least six in ten voters have a positive feeling about de Blasio assuming the role of mayor.  Voters in Brooklyn — 71% — are the most hopeful.  67% of those in Manhattan, 64% of those in the Bronx, and 62% of voters in Queens and Staten Island share this emotion.

How will de Blasio impact New York City?  Nearly six in ten — 58% — think he will change the Big Apple for the better.  14% believe he will make the city worse while 13% report he will not change New York City at all.  15% are unsure.

There is a partisan divide.  While 65% of Democrats say de Blasio will improve New York City, 49% of Republicans think he will make it worse.  55% of non-enrolled voters say de Blasio will have a positive impact on New York City.

There are also differences by race and borough.  More than seven in ten African American voters — 72% — think de Blasio will change the city for the better.  65% of Latino voters citywide agree.  However, 49% of white voters in New York City believe he will improve the Big Apple.

Looking at borough, 65% of voters in Brooklyn believe de Blasio will change New York City for the better.  This compares with 63% in the Bronx and 56% in Manhattan who say the same.  In Queens and Staten Island, 51% think de Blasio will positively affect New York City.

Table: Emotion which Best Describes Feeling about Bill de Blasio becoming NYC Mayor (NYC Registered Voters)

Table: de Blasio’s Impact on NYC (NYC Registered Voters)

Majority with Positive Image of de Blasio

56% of registered voters in New York City have a favorable impression of Mayor-elect de Blasio.  20% have an unfavorable view of him, and 23% have either never heard of him or are unsure how to rate him.

Despite de Blasio’s strong favorable rating, it’s a long way from the campaign trail to City Hall.  There has been a decline in the proportion of voters who have a favorable opinion of de Blasio and an increase in the proportion of those who have yet to form an opinion of the soon-to-be-mayor.  When the Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll last reported this question in November, just before Election Day, more than six in ten voters — 64% — thought favorably of de Blasio.  26% had a lesser impression of him, and only 10% had either never heard of him or were unsure how to rate de Blasio.

When it comes to de Blasio’s political ideology, 61% of voters believe it is about right.  21% think he is too liberal while only 4% say he is too conservative.  14% are unsure.  In November, 56% of voters described de Blasio’s ideology as about right.  29% thought he was too liberal, and 4% said he was too conservative.  11%, at that time, were unsure.

Table: Bill de Blasio Favorability (NYC Registered Voters)

Table: Bill de Blasio’s Ideology (NYC Registered Voters)

Getting to Know You… Next First Lady of NYC Little-Known to Many Voters 

Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, needs to introduce herself to the New York City electorate.  While 46% of voters have a favorable impression of McCray, 45% have either never heard of her or are unsure how to rate her.  Eight percent have a negative opinion of McCray.

Table: Chirlane McCray Favorability (NYC Registered Voters)

A City on Track, Says Majority

51% of New York City voters think the Big Apple is moving in the right direction.  36% believe it is traveling in the wrong one, and 13% are unsure.  When the Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll last reported this question in November, 49% reported the city was on the right course while 42% said it was not.  Nine percent, at that time, were unsure.

Table: New York City Direction (NYC Registered Voters)

Table: New York City Direction Over Time (NYC Registered Voters)

Exit Center Stage… Bloomberg Leaves Office with 49% Approval Rating 

As Mayor Michael Bloomberg prepares to leave office after 12 years in City Hall, 49% approve of his job performance.  This includes 15% who say he is doing an excellent one, and 34% who report he is doing a good one.  30% rate Bloomberg’s performance as fair while 17% think he is performing poorly.  Four percent are unsure.

In the Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist’s November survey, 47% approved of Bloomberg’s job performance.  29% believed his performance was average while 20% said he fell short.  Three percent, at that time, were unsure.

Table: Bloomberg Approval Rating (NYC Registered Voters)

Table: Bloomberg Approval Rating Over Time (NYC Registered Voters)

Bloomberg’s Lasting Legacy 

How will Mayor Michael Bloomberg be remembered?  50% will recall his time in office positively.  Included here are 15% who describe Bloomberg as one of the city’s best mayors and 35% who call him an above average mayor.  31% will remember him as an average mayor while 10% will recall him as a below average one.  Eight percent think Bloomberg will be considered one of the city’s worst mayors.

“Overall, after three terms, New Yorkers think Mayor Bloomberg has done a decent job,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “For most New Yorkers, he has been a commendable mayor.”

When this question was last reported in February, 44% thought Bloomberg’s tenure would be remembered fondly.  37% said his legacy would be an average one while 12% believed Bloomberg would be considered a below average mayor.  Eight percent of voters, at that time, said Bloomberg would be recalled as one of the city’s worst mayors.

Table: Bloomberg’s Legacy (NYC Registered Voters)

Table: Bloomberg’s Legacy Over Time (NYC Registered Voters)

Nature of the Sample

How the Survey was Conducted