Mayor Bill de Blasio scored his best job-approval ratings of his term, according to a poll by Quinnipiac University released Wednesday that also found he’d beat front-running Republicans this fall by 3-to-1 margins.
By 60 percent to 34 percent, voters approve of de Blasio’s performance. The approval rating represented a 10-point jump since a similar survey in late February, when de Blasio was under criminal investigation for his fundraising. De Blasio since has been cleared.
“Remember all those news stories about how Mayor Bill de Blasio was in political trouble? Well, he ain’t,” said Quinnipiac pollster Maurice Carroll.
The new poll showed that de Blasio, a Democrat elected in 2013, would defeat two front-runners for the Republican nomination for mayor: real estate executive Paul Massey and State Assemb. Nicole Malliotakis, of Staten Island.
De Blasio would beat Massey 63 to 21 percent and Malliotakis by 64 to 21 percent, Quinnipiac said. Four of five voters said they didn’t know enough about either Republican to form an opinion.
De Blasio spokesman Dan Levitan said de Blasio “expanded Pre-K for every 4 year old and will do the same for every 3 year old.” Without offering specifics, Levitan said in the statement that “crime is at record lows, jobs are at a record high, New York City is building affordable housing at a record pace, and rents were frozen for more than 2 million tenants. That is the mayor’s record, and it is one that New Yorkers are rallying around.”
Massey spokeswoman Mollie Fullington said in an email that Massey “is focused on talking to hardworking New Yorkers about his vision of innovation, inclusion and integrity for the city, and beating Bill de Blasio on Election Day.”
Aides to Malliotakis could not be reached immediately for comment.
The Quinnipiac poll also reflected long-standing racial and ethnic fissures in de Blasio’s support. While white voters disapproved of de Blasio’s job performance by 55 to 39 percent, black voters approve by 80 to 12 percent, and Hispanics approve 70 to 27 percent. Asians weren’t included in the breakdowns.
The poll also asked about President Donald Trump. Voters overall disapprove of his performance by 74 to 22 percent, but Republicans approved by a margin of 75 to 18 percent.
Also Wednesday, de Blasio went to Queens to celebrate two years without fatalities on Queens Boulevard, the thoroughfare once nicknamed “The Boulevard of Death” because of the high fatality rate. De Blasio credited his Vision Zero traffic safety plan, under which streets are redesigned and more motorists ticketed for violations.
De Blasio also defended his administration’s decision to provide 50,000 free-parking placards to the city’s public school personnel, arguing that doing so forestalled protracted legal challenges by labor unions representing the employees. The mayor promised “real sanctions” for anyone who abuses the permits.
The poll, conducted May 10-16, surveyed 1,019 New York City voters of both parties, via landline and cellphone. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.