Thursday, April 14, 2011

Quan Posts Strong Approval Ratings

By Robert Gammon
Thu, Apr 14, 2011 at 10:54 AM

After one hundred days in office, Oakland Mayor Jean Quan is garnering some strong approval ratings in the city. According to a poll commissioned by CBS 5 TV, 57 percent of Oakland residents approve of the job Quan is doing as mayor so far, compared to just 24 percent who disapprove — an approval margin that is better than 2-1. Nineteen percent of respondents said they were “not sure.” The automated telephone poll of 500 Oakland residents was conducted this week by Survey USA, and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percent.

The poll also produced some interesting results. Oakland's first woman mayor, for example, fared better among men than women, 59 percent to 56 percent. The city’s first Asian-American mayor also scored better among whites (60 percent), blacks (56 percent), and Latinos (62 percent), than among Asians (52 percent). Quan, a liberal, also did better among Republicans (64 percent) and conservatives (62 percent) than Democrats (60 percent) and liberals (57 percent). She was weakest among independents (50 percent) and moderates (54 percent).

Overall, moderates made up 41 percent of the poll respondents, with 35 percent describing themselves as liberal, and 14 percent conservative. Sixty-three percent of the respondents were Democrats, 22 percent were independents, and 10 percent were Republicans. The poll appeared to do a good job reflecting the demographic makeup of the city — 34 percent of respondents were black, 28 percent were white, 19 percent were Latino, and 19 percent were Asian.

Quan also fared best among older residents, with 70 percent of those who are 65 years and older giving her a thumbs up. By contrast, 52 percent of adults aged 18 to 34 said they approved of the job she is doing. Quan’s high marks among older, conservative residents could represent her popularity among Oakland hills voters, since she represented them for eight years on the city council. But it’s difficult to know for sure because the poll did not identify the neighborhood affiliations of the respondents.

Finally, Quan also scored better among college graduates than those who did not finish college — 63 percent to 50 percent. However, her approval rating among those who earn more than $50,000 a year and those who make less than $50,000 were nearly identical — 58 percent to 59 percent.

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