NEW YORK – An embattled New York City Mayor Eric Adams, being investigated over campaign fundraising tactics, ties to Turkey and dissatisfaction over his handling of a migrant crisis has seen his approval rating fall to 28 percent.
That was according to a Quinnipiac University poll that showed it was the lowest standing for any mayor since the surveying began in 1996, showing how far his popularity has declined as he deals with troubles on a number of fronts.
In recent weeks, noted The New York Times in its report, the FBI has seized his cellphones in raids, a woman filed a legal claim accusing him of sexual assault in 1993 and he made unpopular budget cuts to the police, schools and libraries.
Some 58 percent of New Yorkers disapproved of Adams’ performance and that was shown across the board in another setback for him as he has backpedaled in the face of the barrage of accusations.
Most of those polled said that the mayor did not have strong leadership qualities, did not understand their problems and was not honest or trustworthy in a particularly damaging set of findings for him
He also received some of his lowest ratings over his handling of homelessness and the city budget, with only 22 percent of voters supporting him on those issues, in the wake of homeless people committing a string of violent crimes.
“This is certainly a sobering snapshot for this moment in time for Mayor Adams, but also for the city,” said Mary Snow, an Assistant Director of the poll. “Voters are worried about a number of big issues affecting New York City right now, and they’re not happy about the way things are going,” she said.
The prior lowest approval rating for a New York mayor came in July 2003 when Michael R. Bloomberg fell to 31 percent during his first term, according to Quinnipiac University findings then.
Adams, a Democrat who ran for mayor on a public safety message, had seen his approval rating fall this year as he struggled to manage an influx of migrants from the southern border, the paper said.
The FBI raids of the home of his chief fundraiser was part of a broad public corruption investigation into whether his 2021 campaign conspired with the Turkish government to receive illegal foreign donations.
Fabien Levy, Adams’ Deputy Mayor for Communications, questioned the poll’s methodology and said that Adams was improving the city, challenging the results with statistics he said were evidence.
“The real numbers cannot be questioned: Crime is down, jobs are up and we continue to deliver billions of dollars into the pockets of working people,” he said. “There will always be more work to do, but there is no question that this city is in a better place under Mayor Adams’s leadership,” he added.
Adams, who is Black, got positive results only from Black voters, with 48 percent approval and 38 percent not, but his support among Hispanic voters who make up a key voting bloc was only 20 percent in a dismal showing.
The poll surveyed nearly 1,300 registered New York City voters between late November and early December during the crux of his growing troubles, especially over the Turkish ties.
Asked about the federal investigation into his 2021 campaign, 22 percent of voters believe Adams did something illegal, and 30 percent believe he did something unethical but not illegal while 20 percent held him blameless.
Christina Greer, a Political Science Professor who is a fellow at the City College of New York, said he could yet recover from his low approval rating, as Bloomberg did when he went on to serve three terms as mayor.
“This will hopefully be a time for him to reflect and make changes, as opposed to doubling down and digging in his heels,” she said about defiant tactics instead of trying to be more appealing.