Minneapolis residents view Mayor Jacob Frey more favorably than the City Council, but a larger share trust the council to make decisions about the future of the Police Department, according to a Star Tribune/MPR News/KARE 11 Minnesota Poll.
Frey became a national figure following the death of George Floyd in May and the civil unrest that followed. Half of poll respondents had a favorable view of the mayor, vs. 27% who disapproved. The remainder had no opinion.
“I appreciate the positive feedback and I know it’s on me to continue working for our city and building trust with the people of Minneapolis,” Frey said in an interview. “Right now I’m focused on helping the city get back on its feet, not on poll numbers.”
His support was highest among Black residents, 60% of whom said they had a favorable view of the mayor. Only 13% of Black residents viewed the mayor unfavorably.
For the City Council, 43% of respondents had a favorable view and 33% unfavorable.
Frey has opposed City Council efforts to put more control of the Police Department in the council’s hands. A proposal to have voters weigh in this year on replacing the department was delayed by the Charter Commission earlier this month.
By a nine-point margin, poll respondents said they have more trust in the City Council to make decisions about the future of the department. The split was much wider among younger respondents, two-thirds of whom had more trust in the City Council to make the decisions.
Antonio Murry, who is Black and lives on the North Side, said he appreciates having a mayor who is closer to his age — 35. He felt Frey came across as levelheaded during the unrest this summer.
“I’ve heard friends and colleagues of mine say negative things about Mayor Frey, but personally I feel like … he’s done the best that he could do with the city on fire,” Murry said.
Regarding who decides the future of the Police Department, Murry said he is not very familiar with city politics but thinks decisions shouldn’t be made by one person.
“I don’t care how great that one person is, how outstanding they are, that’s too much power for one person to have,” Murry said. “And I love the idea of a City Council and I think that it could be a collaborative effort. I wouldn’t mind seeing some more civilians involved in that process as well.”