Former Rep. Anthony Weiner saw a 4-point bump in his polling numbers Tuesday, nearly one week after he made official his quest to become mayor of New York City.
Weiner, who spent two years out of the political spotlight after a sexting scandal cost him his congressional career, is polling second only to rival Christine Quinn with 19 percent of Democratic voters backing him, according to a Marist Poll released Tuesday.
Quinn, the City Council speaker, has 24 percent support, pointing to a likely runoff in the Democratic race come September, Marist Poll director Lee Miringoff said.
A candidate would have to earn 40 percent of the vote to avoid a runoff.
"The Democratic primary for mayor remains wide open," Miringoff said in a statement. "It is likely to come down to who can punch their ticket for the runoff."
The poll showed Weiner gained 4 points since last month's survey. Weiner had 15 percent to Quinn's 26 percent, according to the April poll.
Weiner, 48, announced his candidacy in a Web video last Wednesday. He has since been campaigning as a fighter for the middle-class in neighborhoods including Manhattan's Harlem, Queens' Jamaica and the Bronx's Co-op City. He is set to attend two mayoral forums Tuesday, including one on education. He has $4.3 million in his campaign war chest, but is lacking endorsements.
Weiner, married with a toddler son, was forced to resign from Congress in 2011 after he posted an explicit photo of himself on Twitter, lied about his social-media account being hacked and then admitted to exchanging inappropriate messages with at least six women.
More than half of voters -- 53 percent -- believe Weiner deserves a second chance while 39 percent say he does not have the character to be mayor, Tuesday's poll showed.
The rate of those who think the former congressman should get another shot is higher among Democrats -- 59 percent -- than Republicans, 61 percent of whom say he lacks the character to be in City Hall.
Tuesday's poll showed that among the other Democratic mayoral contenders, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio has 12 percent support, former Comptroller Bill Thompson has 11 percent and Comptroller John Liu has 8 percent. Undecided voters made for 23 percent of those surveyed. ___
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