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WarrenThe annual Voice of the Voter Poll, a joint project by WXXI, the Democrat and Chronicle, 13WHAM News and WDKX, reveals Mayor Lovely Warren has low approval ratings.

The poll found 63 percent of Monroe County voters have a negative opinion of Warren, rating her job performance as “just fair” or “poor.”

The mayor’s office slammed the poll, releasing this statement:

“If a poll is going to be conducted about the City and its Mayor, then they should poll actual City voters. If a poll is going to ask about race relations in our City, then it should be more inclusive of minority voters. This poll, as always, is not reflective of the electorate in the City of Rochester.  The Voice of the Voter partners should be ashamed to release a poll with a 78 percent white and a 73 percent suburban sample size. Polls like these are flawed, and only perpetuate the feelings of disenfranchisement among City voters.”

I believe mayors should value what suburban voters think of their performance. They work in the city and play in the city. Mayors should want more of them to work and play in the city. They should want more of them to invest in the city and move back to the city. They should recognize that suburban voters have a stake in the city’s future. If suburban voters think you’re doing a bad job, their perception of the city as a whole may be negative. The bottom line is that mayors are important regional voices.

A poll like this could also shed light on whether Warren could run for higher office.

But the fact this poll doesn’t break down how city residents feel about the mayor’s job performance is a glaring omission. These are the mayor’s constituents. She is directly responsible to them. They’re the ones who hold her accountable. The poll’s crosstabs break down responses by demographic for all questions except ones on the job performance of politicians. This is blatantly unfair to Warren and gives city residents less importance than suburban residents. The breakdown should have been included – and reported by the sponsoring outlets. I’ve gotten no response to my tweet about this:



The mayor’s other beefs with the poll are less convincing. The county is made up of about 72 percent suburban voters. The county is also nearly 80 percent white. If you’re going to do a countywide poll, the demographics of the sample line up.

I’m not sure why the mayor’s office singled out asking about race relations. The poll found 69 percent of whites and 62 percent of blacks said race relations were “just fair” or “poor.” Both groups appear to have identified a racial divide.


Links of the Day:


– Governor Cuomo admits his Ebola quarantine policy could be unenforceable.

– A Former RCSD administrator and Razorshark player finds his leadership challenged in Erie County district.

– Support for marijuana legalization is rapidly outpacing opposition.

– The law lets the I.R.S. seize accounts on suspicion alone, no crime required.

– “The United States and Great Britain deserve badges of shame for the resurgence of measles and whooping cough.”

– A Rochester homeless man forgot his identity. It was a huge undertaking to solve the mystery and get him the identification he needs for basic services.

30 Responses to Voice of Which Voters?

  1. October 26, 2014 at 9:34 pm Andrew Zibuck responds:

    Regardless of the poll’s shortcomings, the city’s response is amateurish. “Kill the messenger, with a(n inexplicable) side order of race card.”

    –Suburban resident, downtown worker, multi-racial family.

  2. Don’t fall for the scam. Lovely Warren is desperate for a distraction from the Rochester Housing Authority debacle.

    If the local media takes the bait and turns her rant into the story of the week, RHA gets pushed to the back burner and the mayor will eventually pull out her “we’ve moved on” line of bull-bleep once reporters try to follow up on the RHA loose ends.

  3. October 26, 2014 at 10:09 pm RaChaCha responds:

    It’s a classic move from the Gantt team’s political playbook to change the subject by calling race when confronted by something uncomfortable or inconvenient. City Hall should be glad that this poll was (AFAIK) conducted before the recent RHA fiasco.

    While I’m very much a proponent of more women in elected office, this poll suggests I’m far from alone in being underwhelmed by the mayor and county executive. While over in Syracuse, the mayor and county executive, both women, have gotten high marks for competence.

    It seems like Rochester and Monroe County just can’t catch a break lately.

  4. October 26, 2014 at 10:42 pm Howard J. Eagle responds:

    This is actually par for the course in particular sectors of “rottenchester.” It represents a classic example of the dual-headed monster and disease of individual and institutionalized racism (in its finest and most sophisticated form) — the two of which are thoroughly bound up together, and completely inseparable from one another, i.e., there can be no continued racism without continued racists — period. The fact that 1039 WDKX participated in this represents a disgrace to the station’s call-letters, and I would tell Mr. Marcel that to his face.
    The Struggle Continues.

  5. BTW, one more thought:

    I was disappointed that Hispanics were not broken out in the crosstabs.

    Ours has never been simply a black-and-white world, and that observation certainly comes into play with respect to the underlying struggle for RHA power.

    • October 27, 2014 at 1:14 am Howard J. Eagle responds:

      You are certainly correct. ELITE ELEMENTS within the Hispanic Community have been riding the backs of Black progress ever since they first jumped on during the turbulent 1960’s F.I.G.H.T.-years. Meanwhile, the masses have continued to suffer — in both communities, and until recently, guess who has been TOATALLY in charge.

  6. October 27, 2014 at 12:06 am Dan @bullslawdan responds:

    The nonsense with her driver and the patronage at the start was a bit sour; now the RHA mess… The fact is, a statement like this from Warren will only serve to further disconnect the city from the rest of the area.

    Given the economic demographics (sorry, mayor, the facts are the facts) the city cannot afford to lose the money brought in by suburbanites who work and play in Rochester.

  7. I am a female who is white and is a resident who works in the city….I agree with this poll. Warren is horrific and has done nothing to help this city grow! All she has done is kept her face in the media. Enough already!!

  8. October 27, 2014 at 8:09 am Animule responds:

    Maybe this poll can serve as a reality check to local media that is obsessed with covering the news in such a way that it is nothing but city, city, city – all of the time. As the poll indicates, the city accounts for maybe a quarter of the population base of the county. The city of Rochester, then, is massively over-covered by the media while towns like Greece, Webster, Henrietta and more are largely ignored. It’s about time the media’s news focus reflected the county population, especially since county residents are paying a disproportionate share to run the city in the form of an unfair sales tax sharing formula negotiated years ago.

    • October 27, 2014 at 2:31 pm Howard J. Eagle responds:

      I agree. I would love to see the local media report on a poll of Rochester residents — regarding confidence in the leadership of “towns like Greece, Webster, Henrietta and more.”

  9. October 27, 2014 at 11:57 am L.William Marshall responds:

    I believe that the mayor and her government do effect the areas around the city of Rochester even though they may originally effect the city of Rochester in the long run they work there way out to the suburbs, and beyond, whether it is the deputy mayors DWI that was ruled that there was no justification for the stop or the RHA mess it will someday influence a place outside Rochester

  10. October 27, 2014 at 12:39 pm Eduardo Ricardo responds:

    Lot’s of undeserving bad press. What a shame.

  11. October 27, 2014 at 12:41 pm Eduardo Ricardo responds:

    Beth, as a puerto rican city resident, what has any of your former white mayors done besides raise taxes? Enough already.

    • October 27, 2014 at 2:34 pm Howard J. Eagle responds:

      Beth, as an African American city resident, what has any of your former white mayors done besides raise taxes? Enough already.

  12. I hope Howard Eagle gets his wish. All whites should be dispersed from the city. The city should be strictly for blacks. Only then will concentrated poverty be eliminated. Only then will crime be eliminated. Only then will the RCSD be successful. Only then will graduation rates be 100%. The city needs a black mayor and black city council. No whites apply. The city should also only have black police officers. I hope that day comes soon.

    • October 27, 2014 at 10:00 pm Howard J. Eagle responds:

      Stop making things up. You have seen no “wish” on the part of Howard Eagle regarding
      the relatively small number of “whites [who are left in Rochester] being dispersed from the city.”

  13. October 27, 2014 at 9:36 pm Tony Mittiga responds:

    OAJ at 10/27 7:56pm: Mr Eagle keeps this this discussion going, and isn’t that just great! Now if OAJ’s description of an all black City of Rochester were to come to pass, and let’s remember that the RCSB, school Superintendent, City Council. have had many black, and other minority, members for a long time, I’m confident Mr Eagle will not be at a loss to find other even more malevolent white forces pitted against the City!

  14. October 27, 2014 at 10:03 pm Howard J. Eagle responds:


  15. October 28, 2014 at 4:22 pm Lincoln DeCoursey responds:

    I think the assumption that suburbanites are connected to the city by work and leisure (or as Mayor Richards had argued, that the fate of the whole region hinges to the success or failure of the city) is outdated by a generation or two. My understanding is that downtown Rochester – with its ever-expanding definition – now draws about 50,000 people on weekdays. That’s not insignificant, but compare it to a metro population of 1 million, I think it means that the suburbanite opinion does not factor as importantly to the city as one might suspect. Young people who are inclined to the urban lifestyle will move from the suburbs to the city (at least for a while) once they come of age. Empty nesters may return once their kids have graduated high school and left the house, again if they’re inclined. But many do simply prefer the suburban experience and their opinions, while valid, are not as important to city governance.

  16. The survey reflected the opinion of Monroe County voters, which I believe was it’s stated intention. The county is 70% suburban and 80% white. I agree with the Mayor that it would be nice if the break down of city voters were separate in questions specifically related to the city, but the survey in no way disenfranchises city residents. This was one question in a large survey.

    Most of the race talks in Rochester are tainted by misrepresentation of the racial make up of this county and this city.

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