New York City Mayor Eric Adams won his election on the back of his promise to address crime seriously. Now that it’s clear he is more interested in the celebrity of his office than in doing his job, his poll numbers are circling the drain.
A poll from Quinnipiac University has Adams’s approval rating on crime at just 37%, with his disapproval rating sitting at 54%. In February, Adams enjoyed 49% approval on crime to just 35% disapproval. On the central issue of his campaign, Adams has dropped from +14 to -17 in just under three months. In February, 58% of New York City voters were confident Adams would reduce gun violence in the city. Now, 53% have little to no faith he can do so.
Shootings, robberies, and rapes are all up over the first few months of the year when compared to 2021. Transit crimes are also up as New Yorkers return to the subway, with just 15% of people feeling “very safe” riding the subway during the day.
Meanwhile, Adams has a solution. Relishing in his celebrity status at the Met Gala, he dawned a jacket with the words “end gun violence.” Maybe “bringing a little swagger back” was all New York City really needed to prevent children from being hit by stray bullets while sitting in a car with family or walking home from school.
Bringing a little swagger back to the #MetGala!— Mayor Eric Adams (@NYCMayor) May 3, 2022
Honored to be here. pic.twitter.com/PuyOfy6FmQ
Adams is the king of performative gestures. When COVID-19 mandates were in the news, Adams held up a napkin to media that read, “Lift the mandates.” In the meantime, he refused to lift vaccine mandates for employees (until he decided, a few weeks later, that celebrities and athletes should be exempt from the mandate) and still, in May 2022, requires children between the ages of 2 and 4 to be masked at school. On top of it all, the city is threatening to bring back more COVID-19 mandates.
.@nycmayor writes on his napkin “lift the mandates” and holds it up for the press pic.twitter.com/zOUuiYdaCb— David Freedlander (@freedlander) March 7, 2022
Adams is lost, just months into the job. The man at the helm of the most populous city in the country wants to get all of the publicity and adoration that comes with the position while putting the job second. Politicians who attend events such as the Met Gala are unserious clout-chasers. When they ran as heroes who would turn around a crime-addled city, and are already failing on the job, voters notice.