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Kojo Nnamdi Show-Washington City Paper Poll

Weeks before Election Day, the race for the non-Democratic at-large seat on the D.C. Council is tightening, according to a new Kojo Nnamdi Show-Washington City Paper poll. The poll —- conducted through an automated phone survey of 1,222 registered likely D.C. voters —- also covers a wide range of political and quality of life questions facing the District. It reveals a city divided on issues such as traffic cameras and recent ethics scandals in local government. But the survey also reveals emerging consensus across neighborhoods and racial lines around issues like taxis, Metro and a new D.C. United stadium. The survey was conducted by Public Policy Polling from Oct. 12 to Oct. 14, 2012. It has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 2.8 percentage points.

Poll Results

Detailed Poll Results

Closed Primaries: An Obstacle to Good Government?
Since Congress granted D.C. home rule in 1973, the Democratic Primary has become a de facto general election: whoever wins the Democrats’ closed primary election has gone on to win the general election. Many non-Democrats feel this dynamic deprives them of a voice in selecting city leaders. In light of recent ethics scandals in D.C. government, some commentators -- including Kojo — have suggested this closed system is also undermining good government.

A plurality of registered voters, 44 percent, said they think closed primaries are unfair because they deprive independents, Republicans and other non-Democrats of an opportunity to select the city’s leaders. Thirty-eight percent said closed primaries made sense. As might be expected, this sentiment was particularly strong among non-Democrats. A significant minority of Democrats agreed that closed primaries are unfair.

Total Democrat Republican Statehood Green Libertarian No affiliation
Closed primaries make sense 38% 43% 25% 24% 75% 16%
Closed primaries are unfair 44% 40% 60% 33% 25% 63%
Not sure 18% 17% 15% 43% - 21%

Traffic Cameras
There appears to be majority support for the continued use of automated traffic cameras -- 56 percent favor and 39 percent opposed. Ward 5 is the only jurisdiction with majority opposition to cameras -- 52 percent opposed and 32 percent in favor. Interestingly, many people who have received tickets continue to support the use of automated systems. Thirty-three percent of respondents said they had received a ticket and support the program, compared to 24 percent who had received a ticket and oppose the program.

Total Ward 1 Ward 2 Ward 3 Ward 4 Ward 5 Ward 6 Ward 7 Ward 8
Have received a ticket, opposed to the cameras 24% 19% 14% 14% 30% 25% 24% 36% 25%
Have not received a ticket, oppose the cameras 15% 13% 15% 16% 14% 27% 7% 8% 21%
Oppose (with and without having received a ticket) 39% 32% 29% 30% 44% 52% 31% 44% 46%
Have received a ticket, support the cameras 33% 29% 41% 42% 29% 31% 33% 36% 23%
Have not received a ticket, support the cameras 23% 35% 22% 18% 24% 12% 31% 16% 30%
Support (with and without having received a ticket) 56% 64% 63% 60% 53% 43% 64% 52% 53%
Not sure 5% 4% 8% 11% 2% 5% 5% 4% 1%

A majority, 57 percent, of D.C. voters said they have received an automated traffic ticket because of red light or speed camera enforcement. In Ward 7, 72 percent of residents reported having received an infraction.

Total Ward 1 Ward 2 Ward 3 Ward 4 Ward 5 Ward 6 Ward 7 Ward 8
Have received a ticket. 57% 48% 55% 56% 59% 56% 57% 72% 48%
Have not received a ticket. 38% 48% 37% 34% 38% 39% 38% 24% 51%
Not sure 5% 4% 8% 11% 2% 5% 5% 4% 1%
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