Mayor Rob Ford's approval rating steady, but most want him to resign: Poll
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford at City Hall on Monday. (STAN BEHAL/Toronto Sun)
Almost 60% of Toronto residents want embattled Mayor Rob Ford to resign but his approval rating has yet to crack, according to a new poll.
A Forum Research poll obtained by the Sun early Tuesday found 59% of those surveyed Monday night want Ford - who is trying to cling to power amid an ongoing crack video scandal - to quit. More than half of those surveyed also aren't satisfied with the various apologies Ford has delivered via his Sunday radio show, think the mayor of Canada's largest city has a substance abuse problem and believe he should take a leave of absence to deal with that problem.
But the same poll also finds Ford's job approval rating remains around 43% - virtually the same level it was when a poll was conducted last Thursday, the same day Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair revealed investigators now possess the video that shows the mayor smoking what appears to be crack cocaine. Around 57% of those surveyed disapprove of the job Ford is doing.
“While the mayor's apology didn't have its desired effect of boosting his ratings, at least they didn't fall," Forum president Lorne Bozinoff said in a statement Monday night.
"The remarkable aspect of all this is the number of people who think he's doing a good job, but should resign."
The poll conducted Monday night found 59% of Toronto residents think Mayor Ford should resign while 38% thought he should not resign and 3% said they didn't know.
Forum noted that 30% of those who voted for Ford in the last election think he should leave office and even 14% who approve of the job he is doing think he should call it quits.
Beyond a brief public statement he made Thursday, Ford has opted to respond to the ongoing scandal through his Sunday Newstalk 1010 radio show and a handful of interviews with other radio stations and Sun columnist Joe Warmington. In all the interviews, Ford has apologized for two cases of public drunkenness and vowed to try to curb his drinking while dodging questions about the video, drugs and his apparent close ties with criminals outlined in police surveillance documents also made public on Thursday.
The poll found Ford's strategy doesn't seem to be working so far with most of the public not buying it.
A stunning 62% of those polled said they aren't satisfied with Ford's apology - 36% said they were satisfied and 2% said they were undecided.
Even 34% of those who voted for Ford in 2010 and 21% who think he's doing a good job as mayor said the apology didn't go far enough.
While Ford continues to deny he has a drug problem or is an alcoholic, around 54% of those polled said they believe he has a "substance abuse problem". Only 20% of those surveyed thought Ford doesn't have a substance abuse problem while 26% said they didn't know.
Around 28% of those who approve of the job Ford is doing as mayor also believe he has a substance abuse problem.
The poll also asked, "Should Mayor Ford take a leave of absence and seek help for substance abuse problems or not?" Around 53% said Ford should take a leave of absence to get help while 28% said no and 19% said they didn't know.
The interactive voice response telephone survey was conducted amongst 1,393 Toronto residents. Forum considers the results accurate plus or minus 3%, 19 times out of 20.