D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray will end his first year in office on a down note. A Clarus Poll found Gray with a 34 percent approval rating -- which is actually up three points since March.
The poll showed the D.C. Council overall has a 30 percent approval rating. That’s a big drop from March when it was 54 percent -- and probably not surprising, considering the ethics scandals that have plagued both the mayor and other councilmembers this year.
Three investigations are currently ongoing: Gray is being investigated on allegations regarding misspent campaign money; Council Chairman Kwama Brown is being investigated for spending relating to his 2008 campaign. And federal officials raided the home of Ward 5 Councilmember Harry "Tommy" Thomas Jr. at the beginning of December, looking for evidence to bolster a June report from D.C. Attorney General Irvin Nathan accusing Thomas of taking about $300,000 in government funds for personal use.
The latest poll numbers came from a nonpartisan research group that surveyed 500 registered D.C. voters between Dec. 19 and 21. Coincidentally, during that time, the D.C. Council approved an ethics reform bill that was introduced earlier this month.
The bill will create a new, three-member ethics board that will have the power to investigate allegations of wrongdoing and impose finds. It'll also restrict political spending and require more disclosure of that spending.