Exclusive Action News Fresno Mayoral Poll

Swearengin Makes Big Move in Latest Poll
May 6, 2008 7:19:55 PM PDT
With less than a month before the election, Fresno mayoral contender Ashley Swearengin has made a dramatic jump in the latest exclusive Action News poll conducted by Survey USA.City Councilman Henry T. Perea still leads Swearengin 30-25 percent in the newest poll. Tom Boyajian's a distant third with 11-percent. But compared to the last poll two months ago, Swearengin has cut a 16-point deficit to just five points. The economic development expert feels she has the momentum. Swearengin said "I'm thrilled to hear that. That's really good news. I think our message is catching on but I have to be honest with you I'm not taking anything for granted."

Henry T. Perea spends six hours a day walking precincts and says he's not worried about a perceived swing of momentum. "Not at all. The strength of our support has always been the broad-based coalition of support from business leaders, working families and public safety."

The exclusive Action News poll showed Tom Boyajian supported by 11-percent of those surveyed and Jerry Duncan with 10-percent. Former Fresno Mayor Jim Patterson said "What this poll shows is that this is boiling down to a two-person race. The top tier is Henry Perea and Ashley Swearengin and everybody else is trailing in their wake."

Patterson said the poll numbers may lead to a shift in strategy among two candidates who may be headed to a November runoff. Patterson added "Polling these days is really so good that it is an accurate snapshot and if i was Ashley Swearengin I would be worried about Henry Perea and his supporters coming after her in negative ways."

But the poll front-runners say they'll stick to the issues. Swearengin was up 15-percent among women, up 13-percent among voters who see gangs as our biggest problem and up 9-percent among white voters. Swearengin said "I've walked precincts in every district of this city. We've got to take back the streets from the influence of gangs and crime."

Perea saw increases among young voters and a 9-percent jump among those who feel housing is our biggest problem. Perea said "No matter where i am in northeast Fresno, southwest Fresno or in central this community is ready to come together to solve some of the issues like housing, like the economy." Tom Boyajian was third in our latest mayoral poll but was unavailable for comment.

Jim Patterson says because Perea and Swearengin lead the pack, they'll soon barrage voters with new TV and radio ads.


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