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New poll: Mayor's race neck and neck

SurveyUSA scientific poll shows Todd Gloria leading Barbara Bry 39-38, within the margin of error
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Posted at 4:01 PM, Oct 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-06 19:26:37-04

SAN DIEGO — The race between two Democrats vying to become San Diego's next mayor is neck and neck, according to a new scientific poll.

The ABC-10News Union-Tribune poll shows State Assemblyman Todd Gloria leading City Councilwoman Barbara Bry 39 percent to 38 percent, with 24 percent undecided. The results are well within the SurveyUSA poll's 5.3 percent margin of error.

The race is even closer now than it was a month ago, when a similar poll showed Bry leading Gloria 37 percent to 34 percent, also within the margin of error.

While both are Democrats, the poll showed Bry getting a majority of her support from Republicans and Independents, while Todd Gloria retained a lead among Democrats.

"Barbara Bry is talking about neighborhood issues and slowing down the growth of San Diego, whereas Todd Gloria is talking about addressing housing and doing some growth," said Thad Kousser, a political scientist at UC San Diego. "That finds a political divide over growth that often separates moderates from liberals, or Democrats from Republicans even though both of these candidates Barbara Bry and Todd Gloria are both strong Democrats."

Gloria took home 41 percent of the vote in the March primary, with Bry coming in second with 23 percent. She beat out Republican Scott Sherman by 1,189 to get into the top-two runoff, and his voters appear to be supporting her.

SurveyUSA's poll shows 46 percent of Republicans voting in the mayor's race are supporting Bry, while 46 percent of independents voting in the race also plan to support Bry. Meanwhile, 24 percent of Republicans and 27 percent of independents voting in the race are supporting Gloria.

Gloria's support is coming mostly from Democrats, with 53 percent of members of his own party planning to vote for him, compared to 27 percent for Bry. The remainder are undecided.

"There are different shades of blue within this city and this mayoral race is all about deciding what kind of Democrat San Diego will be governed by," Kousser said.

In a statement, a spokesman for Gloria said they were focused on November 3.

“The only poll that matters is Election Day," he said. "Our campaign will continue working hard to reach every San Diegan in every community and to earn every vote.”

Bry's campaign also released a statement, saying the results were in line with their internal polling, showing the race in a dead heat.

"We’re confident once voters understand the very real differences between the candidates – on issues ranging from protecting residential neighborhoods to re-starting our local economy and being independent from City Hall special interests – that we will prevail on November 3," the statement said.

The poll surveyed 547 likely voters and was conducted between Oct. 1 and Oct. 5.