NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio is getting really low marks for his handling of crime. A new poll shows voters' disapproval.
It's one of the ironies of managing a large city like New York -- the overall crime index is down 7 percent, but city residents are still not happy.
According to the latest Quinnipiac Poll, 49 percent of voters do not approve of how the mayor has handled crime, while 42 percent do approve.
That's a big change from January when 41 percent of New Yorkers disapproved and 50 percent approved, CBS2's Marcia Kramer reported Tuesday.
"People are not satisfied with the state of the criminal justice system in New York City," Quinnipiac Poll assistant director Maurice Carroll said. "De Blasio is the mayor. He's in front of it. So, therefore, he will take the brunt of whenever anybody gets shot, and there's been a fair amount of that stuff lately."
Quinnipiac Poll Shows Mayor's Approval Rating Slipping
Overall, de Blasio's approval rating is at 44 percent, the lowest on record. In addition, 46 percent say the mayor's involvement in national affairs is a distraction, while 42 percent say his apparent quest to become the new incarnation of "America's mayor" is not a distraction.
"Forty-six percent say this is a bit of distraction. Forty-six percent. Still, that's not a huge number. Forty-two percent applaud the idea that he's being a spokesman for liberalism," Carroll told WCBS 880's Rich Lamb.
As it was, the mayor was in Washington on Tuesday, pushing for a national progressive agenda that includes ending income inequality.
"The solutions are not on the table, practically speaking, in this town, Washington D.C. There is not a serious effort being made to actually pass legislation that would address the circumstances of American working people," de Blasio said.
With the U.S. Capitol in the background and surrounded by dozens of elected officials, union leaders and The Rev. Al Sharpton, the mayor began his push to become the left's leading voice in getting Democrats to adopt a tax-the-rich, hike-minimum-wage platform to help those struggling to make it.
With Approval Rating At All-Time Low, Mayor De Blasio Continues Trip To D.C., California
De Blasio unveiled a 13-point platform that he said needs to lead to changes on a federal level, 1010 WINS' Sonia Rincon reported.
"Like increasing the minimum wage to $15 dollars an hour, national paid sick leave and paid family leave laws, universal pre-K and after school and childcare, and closing the tax loopholes that hold us back," the mayor said. "We're going to address issues like the expansion of Social Security, we're going to address debt-free college."
Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who was named America's mayor after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, said de Blasio's coast-to-coast travelling is fine, but he has a real problem with the current mayor's agenda, likening it to communism.
"This idea of income inequality goes back to Hegel, Karl Marx … I mean, this is not a new idea," Giuliani said.
The de Blasio camp begged to differ.
"Income inequality is the crisis of our time, and combating it is our mission," said communications director Phil Walzak. "We need progressive reforms that reward work -- not wealth, not the tired right wing ideology of the past that has failed time and time again."
TO HIRE – OR NOT HIRE – MORE COPS
Following his trip to Washington, the mayor was to head to California to visit his daughter, Chiara, at school and to attend a fundraiser at the home of Facebook co-founder Sean Parker.
Some are questioning why de Blasio is traveling for four days instead of staying in New York City to address a recent spike in crime. There were 44 shooting victims last week, a 76 percent increase from the previous week, CBS2's Diane Macedo reported. There's also recently been a pair of muggings in Central Park.
"It's unacceptable, and we're not even at the summer months," community activist Tony Herbert said. "I mean, look at what's going on. Every time the heat goes up the guns come out."
While Mayor de Blasio was away, the debate on the need to hire more cops raged on. The mayor's new budget does not include more police hires. De Blasio has said he's satisfied with the work of the NYPD.
His spokesman defended that position today saying that "overall crime is down 7 percent."
But that didn't stop Police Commissioner Bill Bratton from disagreeing and pressing his case in public and with the City Council.
"Let's make it very clear: I am looking for a lot more police officer. Let's make no mistake about that," Bratton said Monday.
The police commissioner said the changing face of terror threats from ISIS and others is just one reason to increase NYPD manpower. Bratton gained support from Giuliani.
"If I were Mayor de Blasio I would take Bill Bratton's advice. He knows more about law enforcement than most people in the country. I would take Bill Bratton's advice," Giuliani said.
Giuliani told Kramer he was actually surprised by the debate on hiring police, because it's topsy-turvy. Usually the mayor seeks more cops and the City Council says no. This time the situation is reversed.
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