Afternoon Read: Poll: 45 Percent of D.C. Residents Say City on Wrong Track

A new Washington Post poll found that a growing number of District residents say the city is on the wrong track and a majority thinks Mayor Vincent Gray should resign.

The findings come as the city is beseiged by scandal, with the most recent headlines focusing on the probe into Gray’s 2010 campaign.

Forty-five percent of poll respondents said the city is on the wrong track, while 40 percent believed it is on the right track. The poll found 54 percent saying Gray should resign, while 37 percent said he should not.

Given the current political climate, the results aren’t too surprising, but, according to The Post, this is the first since the summer of 2006 that the poll has found a plurality of D.C. residents concerned about the city’s direction.

During that summer, crime was at a high and concerns about public education and affordable housing were rampant.

Despite the increase from last year, the results are not nearly as bad as the in the early to mid-1990s, when more than 70 percent of residents thought the District was on the wrong track.

The findings of the Post poll, however, weren’t totally pessimistic.

The results showed that 55 percent of residents said the state of the economy was good or excellent, a promising jump from 50 percent last year.

More details of the poll will be in Thursday’s Washington Post.

The National Journal ranked the Maryland District 6 congressional race as the fourth most likely in the country to change partisan control. The race is between longtime Republican incumbent Rep. Roscoe Bartlett and Democratic financier John Delaney.

Over half of the district is new to Bartlett, and it now leans sharply Democratic where it was once safely GOP. Democratic financier John Delaney sunk millions of his own dollars into the primary, and he'll get the opportunity to introduce Bartlett, who has fundraised poorly, to the new sections of the district instead of letting the incumbent do it himself.

* President Obama is returning a campaign donation from Jeffrey Thompson -- the businessman who allegedly funded Gray’s shadow campaign.

According to Politico, the Obama campaign said it has received money from 2.4 million donors and it constantly reviews the contributions for issues. In this case it opted to return the donation.

The DNC also returned a donation from Thompson.

* Gov. McDonnell canceled a Republican-only news conference this afternoon after Democrats said they would skip a meeting of the state’s congressional delegation and governor, according to The RTD.

McDonnell was supposed to discuss what’s at stake for Virginia if Congress doesn’t act before the automatic budget cuts take effect.


McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin said “to assuage Democratic concerns, we have agreed to cancel our unrelated press conference scheduled for after today's meeting. We would hope that the Democratic delegation will now attend today's meeting.”

Martin said the governor is “committed to holding a bipartisan joint delegation meeting. It's unfortunate that our Democratic friends would jeopardize that meeting to make a political point. We certainly haven't objected to their press conferences and campaign events in the past, and we completely understood when some Democrats spent their weekend stumping with the president.”

* Read Tom Sherwood’s report on today’s rally in support of Mayor Vincent Gray.

* House Republicans are denying D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) the opportunity to speak at today's markup on a bill that would ban women from getting abortions in D.C. after their 20th week of pregnancy.

Read more here.

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