Ray Kelly Gets High Marks in Poll Despite Recent Troubles

By Jill Colvin on February 9, 2012 11:24am 

New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
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AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File

MANHATTAN — A majority of New Yorkers approve of the job Ray Kelly is doing as Police Commissioner, despite recent calls for his resignation, a new poll finds.

The latest Quinnipiac University poll shows that Kelly has a 62 percent approval rating — far higher than other citywide officials, including the mayor.

Kelly has been under fire in recent months following a series of reports accusing the NYPD of engaging in domestic spying against Muslim communities, mosques and businesses, even when there was no evidence they’d done anything wrong.

Community frustration grew more intense after the NYPD admitted it had played ‘The Third Jihad,’ a controversial film that portrays Muslims as bent on world domination, on a loop for new recruits. Kelly also appeared in the film.

Still, 60 percent of New Yorkers believe the NYPD has "acted appropriately" in dealing with Muslims and a whopping 77 percent say the NYPD has been effective in combating terror, according the poll. Less than a quarter said Muslims have been "unfairly targeted" by police.

"Despite a wave of criticism and calls for his resignation, support for Police Commissioner Ray Kelly remains strong," Quinnipiac University Polling Institute director Maurice Carroll said.

"New Yorkers say cops are doing a good job, especially fighting terrorism, and reject 2-1 the claim that cops pick on Muslims."

In addition to approval of the NYPD, the poll also found broad support for those pesky parking stickers the Department of Sanitation slaps on cars that fail to move for alternate-side street sweeping.

While the City Council has voted to abolish the so-called ‘Scarlet Letters,’ 60 percent of those polled, including 57 percent of drivers who park on the street, said the stickers are a good idea.

"Even voters who park on the street and do the Alternate Side Parking dance are stuck on the stickers by a wide margin," Carroll said.

The poll of 1,222 voters, conducted from Jan. 30 through Feb. 5, has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.

The City Council has voted to abolish the Department of Sanitation's shame stickers.
The City Council has voted to abolish the Department of Sanitation's shame stickers.
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DNAinfo/Jill Colvin

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