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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, October 24 2014 - Volume 42 Issue 43
Ed Murray most popular pol in town, new poll shows
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Ed Murray most popular pol in town, new poll shows

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

Ed Murray is the most popular politician in town, according to a new EMC poll published by Publicola on October 17.

Murray scored an impressive 70% favorable rating in the new poll, with only 23% of respondents having a negative view of him. The mayor also enjoys 92% name recognition.

Among City Council members, the most popular is veteran Nick Licata, with a 51% favorable rating and only 14% unfavorable. Strangely enough, 34% of the respondents said they had never heard of Licata.

As a result of an initiative passed by Seattle voters, all City Council members will be up for reelection in 2016, with seven elected by district and two at-large. If incumbents want to be reelected, at least two will need to run at-large. That means they will have to calculate whether they show more strength in their districts or in the city as a whole.

Licata, for example, is somewhat more popular in the city as a whole than he is in the north-end district where he lives. In his district, he shows a 46% favorable rating against 12% unfavorable.

Newly elected City Council member Kshama Sawant comes next in popularity with a 50% favorable rating, but Sawant is also the most polarizing figure on the Council with a 30% negative rating.

On the other hand, Sawant shows strength in the Capitol Hill district where she will run for reelection next year. Sixty-one percent of respondents in the Third City Council District said they had a favorable view of Sawant. Only 21% had a negative opinion of her.

Tim Burgess came in third among City Council members with a 45% favorable rating and 17% unfavorable. Sally Clark came fourth with 38% favorable and 16% negative ratings.

Tom Rasmussen and Mike O'Brien lag behind other City Council members in name recognition, with less than half the respondents knowing who they are. Nevertheless, both have satisfactory favorable vs. unfavorable numbers. Among the people who know them, three times as many like them as dislike them.

In district polling Rasmussen's favorable vs. unfavorable margin goes up to four to one, although 50% of respondents in his West Seattle district still do not recognize his name.

Sally Bagshaw also enjoys a four to one favorability margin in her district, although she is even less well-known than Rasmussen. Fifty-three percent of respondents in the Seventh City Council District did not recognize her name.

Veteran Council member Jean Godden enjoys a two to one advantage in her City Council district, with 43% favorable against 21% unfavorable. Bruce Harrell shows similar numbers in his southeast Seattle district, 42% favorable and 18% unfavorable.

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