Poll finds SF voters want Mirkarimi out as sheriff

August 22, 2012 10:28:11 PM PDT
A new poll shows most San Francisco voters do not want Ross Mirkarimi to remain as sheriff. Sixty-one percent said yes, they want Mirkarimi removed from office while 31 percent said no, they do not want him removed. Eight percent were unsure.

The city's Commission on the Status of Women will be voting Wednesday night on whether to endorse the Ethics Commission's decision. The vote is non-binding but it could be influential supervisors vote on the issue.

Eliana Lopez and numerous supporters of her husband attended the meeting, asking the commissioners not to support the Ethics Commission's decision against Mirkarimi. Others urged the panel to take the same stand as the Ethics Commission. The vote comes on the heels of the poll, which may influence the future of the suspended sheriff.

"The poll overwhelmingly shows that the people of San Francisco feel domestic violence is wrong and that our sheriff cannot continue to hold office," policy consultant Joyce Newstat said.

Last week, the Ethics Commission voted that Mirkarimi was guilty of official misconduct.

The suspended sheriff pleaded guilty in March to misdemeanor false imprisonment in his domestic violence trial. It all stemmed from a heated argument Mirkarimi had with his Lopez on New Year's Eve -- a domestic spat which resulted in Mirkarimi grabbing her arm and leaving a bruise

Aside from the headline grabbing statistics, the most pointed question in the poll is the one supervisorial incumbents in this November's election might look at closely, since it'll be the Board of Supervisors that will decide Mirkarimi's ultimate fate.

The poll asks if a member of the Board of Supervisors voted to keep Mirkarimi as sheriff, "Are you more likely or less likely to vote for them in the next election?" Nineteen percent answered more likely, but 51 percent said they would be less likely to vote for them. Twenty-three percent responded it wouldn't make a difference.

"A vote by the Board of Supervisors in favor of Ross Mirkarimi retaining his position as sheriff would be like saying there are acceptable or legitimate forms of domestic violence," domestic violence victim advocate Kathy Black said.

The poll also broke down the answers by supervisorial districts, so board members can see how their constituents stand.

One interesting result, more men than women said Mirkarimi should be removed from office.

The poll was taken over the weekend by the Public Policy Group. Domestic violence victims advocates raised about $2,000 to commission the poll.


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