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NYers Give Bloomberg, Con Ed A Thumbs Down for Queens Blackout

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TWC News: NYers Give Bloomberg, Con Ed A Thumbs Down for Queens Blackout
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A new NY1 poll released Monday night on "Inside City Hall" finds that a majority of New Yorkers disapprove of the job Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Con Ed did in the wake of the blackout in Northwest Queens.

The poll shows that New Yorkers are not happy with the way the mayor handled the outage (27% approve/53% disapprove), but Bloomberg still has a high overall job approval among residents (58% approve/29% disapprove) and registered voters (60% approve/28% disapprove).

The mayor's rankings are down a bit from June, but considering that this poll was conducted right after a crisis, New Yorkers did not believe he handled well, a 60% job approval among registered voters and 58% among all residents is considered quite good.

Meanwhile, 71% of respondents say the problem would have been dealt with faster if it had been in Manhattan. All groups and all boroughs agree.

Con Ed is seen as having purposefully hidden the truth about the extent of the outage by a majority of New Yorkers. Half the city (50%) believes Con Ed hid the truth, a third (33%) say Con Ed did not know about the extent of the outage, and 4% felt that it was a combination of the two. Of those who say Con Ed did not know, most think they could not have known (58% of the 33% = 19% of total city sample), while 28% say it was incompetence (9% of total city sample).

Even so, only 29% think Con Ed CEO Kevin Burke should resign his post, while 47% say he should stay on the job.

It should also be noted that this was a small summer weekend sample with a larger than usual margin of error.

—NY1 Pollster Mickey Blum


6A. In general, do you approve or disapprove of the job Michael Bloomberg is doing as mayor?

Approve - 60%
Disapprove - 28%
Not Sure / Refused — 12%

7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Mayor Bloomberg handled the power outage in Queens?

Approve - 27%
Disapprove - 53%
Not Sure / Refused — 20%

8. Do you think Con Ed and the city would have responded faster if the power outage had occurred Manhattan?

Yes - 71%
No - 17%
Not Sure / Refused — 12%

9. It took four days for Con Ed to announce that there were 25,000 customers without power in Northern Queens instead of the 2,500 originally announced. Con Ed said they released the real numbers as soon as they knew them.

I think that Con Ed purposefully hid the truth about what they knew — 50%

I think Con Ed did not know how widespread the problem was — 33%

I think it was a combination of the two - 4%

Not Sure / Refused — 14%

9A. Do you think Con Ed did not know how widespread the problem was...

Because Con Ed was incompetent - 28%

Because there was no way to know the extent of the problem - 58%

Not Sure / Refused — 14%

10. Do you think Con Ed CEO Kevin Burke should resign?

Yes, resign - 29%
No, don't resign - 47%
Not Sure / Refused — 24%


This telephone poll of a random sample of 506 New York State registered Democrats, plus an oversample of NYC residents (total NYC sample = 467 residents), was conducted for NY1 News by Blum & Weprin Associates, Inc., July 27-30, 2006. The mayoral job approval question was asked of 341 NYC residents July 28-30, 2006.

The sample was based on an RDD design which draws numbers from all existing telephone exchanges in New York State, giving all phone numbers, listed and unlisted, a proportionate chance of being included. Respondents were randomly selected in the household, then screened for party registration. Respondents had the option of being interviewed in Spanish. The overall sample results for adult residents were weighted demographically and geographically for NYS registered democrats for the NYS questions and for NYC residents for the NYC questions. The estimated average sample tolerance for data from the survey is +/- 4.4 % for the state sample, 6.*% for debate questions, 4.6% for the NYC sample, and 5.3% for the Mayoral approval question at the 95% confidence level. That is, the chances are about 19 out of 20 that if all households with telephones were surveyed with the same questionnaire, the results of the complete census would not be found to deviate from the poll findings by more than 4.4 percentage points for NYS Democrats and 4.6% for NYC residents. Sampling error for subgroups is higher. Differences among subgroups not noted above should not be used. Sampling is only one source of error. Other sources of error may include question wording, question order and interviewer effects.

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