Poll: Weiner's lead disappears in NYC mayor's race

12:43 PM, Jul 25, 2013   |    comments
Anthony Weiner/NBC
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by Catalina Camia, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON -- Anthony Weiner has lost his lead in the New York City mayor's race following revelations he continued to send lewd messages online to women after he resigning from Congress in 2011, according to a new poll released Thursday.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn now garners 25% support among Democratic primary voters compared to 16% for Weiner, according to the poll by NBC 4 New York, The Wall Street Journal and the Marist Institute for Public Opinion.

It's the first survey since Weiner acknowledged on Tuesday he sent more salacious messages. Last month, the same poll showed Weiner leading Quinn by 5 percentage points.

"For many Democrats the latest revelations about Anthony Weiner are more of the same, only more so," said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. "Weiner has lost his lead and his negatives are at an all-time high."

Weiner, a former seven-term congressman representing parts of Brooklyn and Queens, said earlier in the week that he would not quit the mayor's race, despite calls from some of his rivals and two of the city's largest newspapers to do so.

Weiner and ex-New York governor Eliot Spitzer, another disgraced Democrat forced to resign because of a sex scandal, have pushed the city's politics into the national spotlight as they seek redemption.

Public advocate Bill de Blasio and former city comptroller William Thompson were tied at 14% each in the mayor's race with 19% of Democratic voters undecided.

The survey shows there has been a "dramatic" shift in Weiner's popularity. More than 5 in 10 Democratic voters, or 55%, have an unfavorable opinion of Weiner compared with 30% who view him favorably. Another 15% say they have not heard of Weiner or are unsure how to rate him, the poll shows.

Last month, Weiner's favorable rating was 52% in the poll.

"New York City Democrats were willing to give Anthony Weiner a second chance, but are reluctant to excuse his behavior now," Miringoff said.

The survey of 551 Demcorats, taken Wednesday, has a margin of error of +/- 4.2 percentage points.

Party primaries are Sept. 10. If no candidate gets more than 40% of the vote, there will be a runoff on Oct. 1.

Follow @ccamia on Twitter.

Copyright 2013 USATODAY.com




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