Apr 18, 2023 - News

New poll shows tight Denver mayor's runoff election

Denver mayoral candidates Kelly Brough, left, and Mike Johnston at a Feb. 23 forum. Photos: Hyoung Chang/Denver Post

Denver mayoral candidates Kelly Brough, left, and Mike Johnston at a Feb. 23 forum. Photos: Hyoung Chang/Denver Post

The runoff election for Denver mayor is a tight race with Mike Johnston holding a slight edge over Kelly Brough, a new poll shows.

State of play: Johnston is supported by 38.9% of likely voters compared to 34.1% for Brough, according to the bipartisan poll shared exclusively with Axios Denver.

  • The margin of error is plus-or-minus 4.8 percentage points, essentially showing the candidates in a statistical tie. And 27% of voters remain undecided.

Why it matters: The survey — commissioned by A Denver for Us All, a coalition of business startup leaders — is the first look at the June 6 runoff election in the all-important Denver mayor's race.

What they're saying: "The mayoral race is close, it's anyone's game," said Democratic pollster Brad Chism, who conducted the survey with Republican firm Cygnal.

  • "Denver voters spoke loudly in the first round, elevating two moderate candidates, and it's clear that voters are hungry for practical solutions to the challenging issues of crime, affordable housing and homelessness."

Zoom in: Johnston and Brough are viewed favorably by a majority of voters, and unaffiliated voters and women are evenly split on the candidates, according to the survey.

  • Crime, housing affordability and homelessness remain the top issues in voters' minds but an age gap is evident. Older voters and homeowners are more likely to prioritize crime, while younger voters and renters are most worried about housing costs.

The intrigue: In testing the candidate's positions, the pollsters found 54% backed Brough's plan to arrest people experiencing homelessness who refuse to leave the streets for a shelter or sanctioned camping site. Thirty-two percent opposed the idea.

  • Other proposals to add more police officers and abolish homeless encampments received broad support.
avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Denver.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Denver stories

No stories could be found

Denverpostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Denver.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more