Surprise! New York voters are running away from Anthony Weiner
Following new sexting revelations, the New York City mayoral candidate's support is plummeting
Anthony Weiner's latest scandal — he has admitted to sexting three women after resigning from Congress over his earlier sexting misadventures — has cost him the lead in New York City's mayoral race, according to a new poll out Thursday, the first survey since the new scandal came to light.
New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn now leads the field at 25 percent, with Weiner a distant second at 16 percent, according to an NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll of registered Democrats. Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and former Comptroller Bill Thompson are tied in third with 14 percent.
The shift at the top is a net 14-point swing against Weiner since last month. In June, Weiner led Quinn 25 to 20 percent in Marist's survey.
The latest poll was conducted on Wednesday — one day after news broke that Weiner kept flirtatiously chatting with and sending nude pictures to random women on the internet following his resignation from Congress. Weiner resigned in 2011 after he was similarly caught with his pants down, and had since returned to the public eye insisting he had learned from his mistakes and was a changed man.
"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."
As Miringoff notes, Weiner's favorability rating has flipped upside down. In June, 52 percent of Democratic respondents liked him, while 36 percent did not. In the wake of the latest scandal, only 30 percent still say they like him, while 55 percent say they do not.
Weiner, who responded to this latest scandal by saying his sexting ways were finally behind him this time, has vowed to stay in the race. New York Democrats were closely split on that decision, with 47 percent saying he should stay in, and another 43 percent saying he should drop out.
Yet even if he does stay in to the end, he may have a hard time winning a majority of the vote, even in a runoff. Forty-five percent of respondents in the Marist poll say Weiner "does not have the character to be mayor."