Poll: Ray Kelly Favored Among Likely Mayoral Candidates

A Quinnipiac poll released this morning finds that, among possible mayoral candidates, Ray Kelly is favored by 22 percent of respondents. He’s followed, in order, by Anthony Weiner, Marty Markowitz, Christine Quinn, Betsy Gotbaum and Bill Thompson.

Polls at this stage in an election cycle should be taken with a massive grain of salt (as in, many of these candidates haven’t officially declared they are going to run for mayor yet, and Betsy Gotbaum has said she won’t run), but it seems to say something, at least, about Kelly’s potential if he ever chose to get in. Also, although the poll was taken without listing party affiliations for the candidates, it is expected that Kelly would run as a Republican.

More of the release:

New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly tops the list when voters are asked whom they would like to see elected Mayor next year, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Kelly also has the highest approval rating among most of the mayoral possibilities.
The independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll lists choices, with no party affiliation, and asks New York City voters to select the one they most want to see elected Mayor in 2009. Results are:
• Kelly – 22 percent, including 16 percent of Democrats;
• U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner – 14 percent, with 15 percent of Democrats;
• Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz – 14 percent; 15 percent of Democrats;
• Council Speaker Christine Quinn – 13 percent; 16 percent of Democrats;
• Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum – 8 percent; 9 percent of Democrats;
• Comptroller William Thompson – 8 percent; 10 percent of Democrats.
Kelly gets a 62 – 28 percent approval rating, with white voters approving 75 – 16 percent, black voters split 44 – 44 percent and Hispanic voters approving 58 – 34 percent. Approval ratings for other citywide officials are:
• Quinn: 48 – 15 percent;
• Thompson: 44 – 11 percent;
• Gotbaum: 45 – 18 percent.
“Number one in the early line for mayor next year – Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. Kelly has political pluses and minuses. Probably it’s due to all the news about the Bell trial, but his job approval rating, healthy overall, is only a standoff in the Black community. Among Republicans, which is the party line most politicians think he’d run on, he’s the big favorite, ” said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
“Three Democrats are bunched in the teens: Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Congressman Anthony Weiner,” Carroll added.

Congestion Pricing
By a 56 – 38 percent margin, New York City voters oppose the revised congestion pricing plan to charge a fee for vehicles driving below 60th Street in Manhattan.
But by a 59 – 38 percent margin, voters say they would support congestion pricing if the money is used to improve mass transit in and around New York City.
Support for congestion pricing, if the money is used for mass transit is:
• Manhattan: 73 – 23 percent;
• Bronx: 57 – 39 percent;
• Brooklyn: 51 – 46 percent;
• Queens: 58 – 40 percent;
• Staten Island: 55 – 42 percent.
Only 43 percent of voters say it is “very likely” or “somewhat likely” that congestion pricing funds will be used to improve mass transit, while 54 percent say this is “not too likely” or “not likely at all.”
By a 58 – 36 percent margin, New York City voters agree that congestion pricing would unfairly tax people who live outside Manhattan. Only Manhattan voters disagree, 52 – 43 percent, with that claim.
A total of 89 percent of New York City voters say traffic congestion is a “very serious” or “somewhat serious” problem in the city.
“As decision time approaches in City Hall and Albany, the numbers don’t change. Congestion pricing: No. Congestion pricing if the money helps mass transit: Yes,” Carroll said.
“But New Yorkers are skeptical of promises by politicians who support congestion pricing. Most voters doubt that the money really would find its way to mass transit improvements.
“Again, it’s Manhattan against the world. In the other boroughs, they think congestion pricing would unfairly tax people outside of Manhattan. People in Manhattan disagree.”
From March 4 – 10, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,427 New York City registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 2.6 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.

Poll: Ray Kelly Favored Among Likely Mayoral Candidates