Campaign Poll Shows Gloria Vulnerable in Re-Election
By Arturo Castañares
A new poll conducted in the last month suggests that a majority of San Diegans are looking for new leadership at City Hall just as first-term Mayor Todd Gloria starts gearing up his re-election campaign for next year's election.
"Nearly six-in-ten voters (59 percent) think the city has gotten off on the wrong track," the poll analysis states. "Only 36 percent say it is heading in the right direction."
The negative view of the City's direction was highest among older voters, with 72% of voters over 45 years of age saying the City is heading in the wrong direction, and the lowest percentage believing so being among young and liberal voters.
The poll also suggests that the blame for the City's wrong direction lies with one person: current Mayor Todd Gloria.
"Thirty-nine percent of the voters say Gloria deserves to be re-elected and 54 percent say it is time to give a new person a chance (33 percent say it is 'definitely' time for a new person)," the poll analysis states.
A hypothetical matchup in the poll shows that Gloria is vulnerable to losing re-election to another well-known local politician, Congressman Scott Peters.
The poll asked respondents whether they would vote for Gloria or Peters if the election were held today.
"Gloria does not fare well in a matchup with Scott Peters," the analysis states. "Peters has a six-point advantage in an election matchup with the current mayor."
The poll results show Peters at 50% to Gloria at 44% with 4% of the respondents undecided.
The City faces several vexing issues, including rising housing costs and increasing homelessness, especially around downtown, which has more than doubled during Gloria's term, according to the most recent monthly count of unsheltered individuals conducted by the San Diego Downtown Partnership.
Gloria was elected in 2020 after having served two four-year terms in the California State Assembly. Gloria previously served two four-year terms on the San Diego City Council, including one year as Interim Mayor after Mayor Bob Filner resigned in 2013 amid sexual harassment claims
Peters currently represents the 50th Congressional District which includes the cities of Coronado, San Marcos, Escondido, and most of the City of San Diego. First elected to Congress in 2012, Peters previously served two four-year terms on the San Diego City Council, including having been the first Council President in 2005 after voters approved the "Strong Mayor" form of government that removed the Mayor from the Council and created a Council President to preside over the meetings.
Peters endorsed Gloria in the 2020 campaign for Mayor.
Sources close to former Mayor Kevin Faulconer say he is considering running for Mayor again after having failed to make the 2021 runoff in the special election to recall Governor Gavin Newsom. Faulconer served two terms as Mayor from 2013 to 2020. Under the City's term limits, mayors and councilmembers are limited to two consecutive four-year terms but can run again after sitting out at least one election.
The poll was conducted by New Bridge Strategy, an experienced public policy and campaign research firm based in Colorado.
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