With less than two weeks till New York City's primary elections, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has gained significant ground in the Democratic primary for city comptroller, two new polls have found.
In a Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday, Stringer was tied with former Gov. Eliot Spitzer at 46 percent among likely Democratic voters -- a dramatic shift from Aug. 12, when he trailed by 19 points.
An amNewYork-News 12 poll conducted by Penn Schoen Berland, also released Wednesday, gave Spitzer a slight edge, with 46 percent to Stringer's 43 percent.
There's a wide racial gap: in the Quinnipiac poll, Spitzer leads by 12 points among black voters, while Stringer had a 23-point lead among whites.
One contributing factor to Spitzer's sinking numbers: only 27 percent of the likely voters sampled in the Wednesday Quinnipiac poll were black, compared to 35 percent in the Aug. 12 poll. The earlier poll also gave Spitzer a 47-point lead among black voters.
The narrowing in the race follows the launch of Stringer's first ad campaigns, in which he sought to introduce himself to voters as a champion of the middle class. He was also endorsed by the editorial boards of the Daily News, The New York Post and The New York Times.
"Public polling is catching up to what we are seeing on the subways and streets," Stringer campaign manager Sascha Owen said in a statement. "As voters around the city get to know Scott Stringer, they are seeing that the choice is clear -- and we'll be fighting to the last hour to win over every last one of them."
Spitzer's camp said they weren't worried by the results.
“We feel good about where the race stands today. All along, we’ve said that the only poll that matters is on election day. We’re confident that New Yorkers will choose to elect an independent voice to the comptroller’s office," spokeswoman Lis Smith said in an email.
Polling on the race has varied significantly in the past two months, as HuffPost Pollster's chart shows:
The Quinnipiac poll surveyed 602 likely Democratic primary voters between Aug. 22 and Aug. 27. The Penn Schoen Berland poll surveyed 600 likely Democratic voters on the same dates. Both used live telephone interviews.