Montrealers don’t think too highly of their mayor, compared to citizens of other big cities in Canada, according to a recent survey.
Tremblay came in last in a poll conducted by Toronto-based firm Forum Research Inc., which surveyed citizens of Canada’s 15 biggest cities on their feelings toward the leaders of their municipal governments.
Only 32 per cent of the 408 Montreal respondents approved of Mayor GÃ©rald Tremblay’s work, while 21 per cent said they would vote for him in the next election.
Why did Montreal citizens rank their mayor so poorly? “He has been mayor for a really long time and now people want something new, they want to see change,” suggested Fady Toban, VP finance of Concordia’s political science student association.
But, Toban said, the results do not necessarily just reflect on the mayor’s performance. “It’s a general trend now, people are fed up of the old institutions.”
Tremblay was first elected in November 2001 and was re-elected in 2005 and 2009.
Concordia political science professor, Everett M. Price, also believed the poll illustrated a pattern of voter disinterest. “In general, people are less interested in politics,” Price said, referring to low voter turnout across Canada.
Still, mayoral spokesperson Darren Becker pointed out that before the 2009 elections, a poll showed that Tremblay only had 20 per cent of voter support and he still won a majority in the election.
“One poll doesn’t reflect the thoughts of the entire population,” Becker said.
Becker confirmed that Montreal’s mayor is still reflecting on whether or not he will attempt another run for mayor in the 2013 election. He added that Tremblay “still has two years left to deliver on his election promises.”
Toban added that if Tremblay wants to regain his voters’ support, “he needs to show his solidarity with citizens.”
“He needs to get out and show his support for the important causes that voters care about,” said Toban. “It’s been done by other politicians before.”
Tremblay narrowly edged out Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who had 37 per cent voter support, for last place. Mississauga, Ont. Mayor Hazel McCallion was ranked the highest with 78 per cent of participants in her city praising her leadership.
Meanwhile, Quebec City Mayor RÃ©gis Labeaume has the highest chance of being re-elected, with 67 per cent of respondents saying they would vote for him.