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Despite the ability to rank candidates, 24 percent and 32 percent of respondents were unsure when asked about their second and third choices, respectively. Those who did have a second choice favored Cohen and Samuels. Voters’ second and third choices could prove hugely important on Election Day, since no candidate is likely to garner 50 percent of the vote on the first round of balloting.
“The mayor has very little power — it’s all in the council, so I don’t have any feeling that there is a difference in the candidates,” said resident John Barker, who is focused much more intently on his 13th ward council election.
Andrew had the highest favorability rating (30 percent), followed by Samuels (28 percent) then Hodges and Cherryhomes (tied at 25 percent). Cherryhomes has the highest unfavorability rating (28 percent), followed by Hodges (20 percent) and Samuels and Fine (tied at 17 percent).
More union members went for Samuels as their first choice (28 percent) over any other candidate, though Andrew has received the bulk of endorsements and campaign contributions from unions. More white voters (15 percent) cited Hodges, who is white, as their first choice over any other candidate. More black voters said Samuels, who is black, was their first pick (30 percent) over any other contender.
Meanwhile, more Republicans (23 percent) went for Samuels over other candidates, while more Democrats went for Samuels and Hodges (each winning 21 percent) over their competitors.
One factor that could sway the race is an endorsement from Rybak, who leaves office popular with city voters.
Seventy-one percent of respondents said they “somewhat approve” or “strongly approve” of Rybak’s performance as mayor — with 40 percent feeling strongly. Only 20 percent disapproved.
The mayor has yet to say if or when he’ll make an endorsement.
Maya Rao • 612-673-4210 Eric Roper • 612-673-1732