A new NY1/Marist poll shows an open Democratic primary race for mayor of New York City following the departure of former congressman Anthony Weiner, with City Council speaker Christine Quinn narrowly leading a crowded field.
According to State of Politics, the poll finds Quinn, an out lesbian from Manhattan, leading other potential Democratic hopefuls among respondents citywide at 16%, followed by former city comptroller Bill Thompson at 15% and Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz at 14%. Comptroller John Liu, Public Advocate Bill De Blasio, and Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer trail in the single digits, with the largest group of respondents undecided at 32%.
Those figures compare to April, when the NY1/Marist poll found Weiner in the lead among Democrats with 18%, followed by 15% for Thompson, still the only candidate to have officially declared, and 13% each for Liu and Quinn, with 27% of respondents undecided.
Weiner, a former congressman from Queens, resigned in June over an online sex scandal. A special election will be held to fill his seat September 13.
"With Weiner out of the picture, there are twice as many undecided voters than voters who support any one of the current contenders," said Lee M. Miringoff, director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, in a news release that accompanied the latest poll. "That makes for a very fluid contest."
As of the fund-raising period that ended earlier this month, Quinn leads the Democratic field with $4 million cash on hand. The early fund-raising advantage can allow a campaign to focus on other priorities sooner, but with more than two years to go until the primary, most serious candidates planning to use the city's public finance system are expected to reach the $6.4 million limit.
On Wednesday a Quinnipiac University poll found that Police Commissioner Ray Kelly topped a field of prospective candidates among all voters at 23%, followed by Quinn at 18%, although she led among Democratic voters. Kelly, who would likely run as a Republican, has not made any public statements that indicate interest in a campaign.