Alumnus leads Fenty in mayoral race polls

Less than one month before the Democratic primary for D.C.’s highly anticipated mayoral race, GW alumnus Vincent Gray has a 5 percentage point lead over incumbent Mayor Adrian Fenty, a poll by Clarus Research Group shows.

Clarus Research Group conducted a poll of 501 registered democrats who self-identified as likely voters in the Sept. 14 primary election. According to the poll, Gray is up 41 percent to Fenty’s 36 percent.

More than 20 percent of voters polled remain undecided.

A spokeswoman for Gray’s campaign said the most recent poll is good news for the current D.C. Council Chairman’s campaign.

“We knew it was going to be a tight race from the beginning,” Gray spokeswoman Traci Hughes said. “We’re gaining more and more support right in Fenty’s backyard.”

Though Gray leads in the poll, Fenty leads Gray in Foggy Bottom by a margin of 56 percent to 26 percent.

Other interesting data from the poll shows a wide racial split between the two major candidates.

Black voters favor Gray by a margin of 54 percent to 16 percent, while white voters support Fenty 61 percent to 19 percent. Both candidates are black.

The poll had more good news for the Gray campaign: the D.C. City Council – which Gray currently chairs – boasts a 62 percent approval rating, a number far higher than most other legislative bodies nationwide.

Hughes said, however, the only number that matter is the number of voters who go to the polls Sept. 14.

The Fenty campaign did not return a request for comment.

Fenty, the fifth mayor of D.C., has been in office since 2006 and is running for a second term.

The Washington Post and Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York have endorsed Fenty.

Gray studied psychology at GW at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

He became the first African-American admitted in the GW fraternity system. In his junior and senior years, he became the first person to serve consecutive terms as Chancellor of Tau Epsilon Phi.

– Priya Anand

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