May 19th, 2021 2 Minute Read Press Release

NEW POLL: Adams, Yang Down to the Wire in NYC Mayoral Race

Manhattan Institute poll reflects shifting attitudes in response to citywide crime wave, points to Garcia as a candidate to watch

NEW YORK, NY – Eric Adams enjoys a razor-thin one-point lead over Andrew Yang in New York City's mayoral election, according to a new poll of likely Democratic primary voters conducted for the Manhattan Institute between May 14 and May 17. Kathryn Garcia, the city's former sanitation commissioner, is favored by 11 percent of likely voters, landing third after Adams and Yang (18 and 19 percent, respectively) and outpacing the other candidates in terms of public curiosity and interest. Maya Wiley and Scott Stringer garnered 10 and 8 percent of the vote, respectively. 

As crime in the city continues to rise, the poll found that nearly half of the city's Democratic primary voters rate “public safety and crime rates” as one of their top two priorities for the next mayor. Only 18 percent want to see less police presence in their neighborhoods. And half of survey respondents approve of the job the New York City Police Department is doing. On the other hand, approval ratings for current Mayor Bill de Blasio remain weak, the survey found.

"The race for New York City mayor is still neck-and-neck," said Michael Hendrix, Manhattan Institute director of state and local policy. "Our polling shows that candidates can still make up ground with a broad appeal to primary voters, but time is running out."

He continued: "While Democratic primary voters are farther left than the average New Yorker, it turns out they care about many of the same things: crime, housing, the economy, and schools."

The poll was conducted as a phone survey by Public Opinion Strategies on behalf of the Manhattan Institute, and it reflects the views of 500 Democratic voters likely to vote in the mayoral primary election in June. The poll, as well as original analysis from Hendrix, is part of the Manhattan Institute’s Mayoral Playbook, itself part of the Institute's broader New York City: Reborn initiative.

Click here to view the full poll and analysis.

About New York City: Reborn

New York City: Reborn is a Manhattan Institute project that encompasses research, journalism, and event programming. Through this initiative, the institute convenes business, civic, academic, and civil-society leaders from around the city with MI scholars to discuss issues key to the city’s recovery. Post-coronavirus, MI envisions a growing New York City with a thriving economy, healthy finances, accessible housing, effective infrastructure, flourishing education, safe streets, and increasing competitiveness. New York City: Reborn will help turn that vision into reality. Click here to learn more.


Are you interested in supporting the Manhattan Institute’s public-interest research and journalism? As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, donations in support of MI and its scholars’ work are fully tax-deductible as provided by law (EIN #13-2912529).