TORONTO - Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's approval rating slipped a bit at the end of a summer of headlines related to booze and drugs.
A Forum Research poll provided exclusively to QMI Agency Friday found Ford's heading into Labour Day weekend with a 44% approval rating — down from 46% last month.
Despite the fact 56% of those polled disapprove of the job Ford is doing, Forum president Lorne Bozinoff argues he's still the "Kevlar mayor" provided his approval rating stays steady above 40%.
"Nothing is going to shake the Ford Nation. Barring a complete catastrophe, I think he is going to have this 40% to 45% rating all the way in, right to next year," Bozinoff said Friday.
The poll, that surveyed 848 Toronto residents on Thursday night, comes after a string of headline-grabbing incidents this month including the mayor wandering around the Taste of the Danforths street festival appearing to be drunk, Ford's own admission he's smoked "a lot" of marijuana and his hyped-up arm-wrestling match with Hulk Hogan.
What's more, this summer has seen media reports suggesting Toronto Police are investigating attempts by Ford's associates to get ahold of the alleged videotape said to show the mayor smoking crack cocaine.
And court documents obtained by the Toronto Sun found that in 2012, a convicted drug peddler broke into the mayor's home, threatened to kill him, and shouted: "You owe me money.”
"For the last 12 months he's been in this 40% range. Everyone has an opinion one way or the other about the mayor, as divisive as he is he's got his supporters and they are going to stick with him, I think, no matter what," Bozinoff said.
"If he had 44% of the vote that would put him in again, I think," he said. "He's actually got a high approval rating (compared to other politicians)."
Ford's approval rating was highest among residents polled who were between the ages of 45 and 64, those who make less than $40,000 a year, those who live in Scarborough, those who identify themselves as drivers, those who didn't go to college or university, Catholics and those who identify themselves as an ethnic minority.
Around 77% of those who voted for Ford in the last election approve of the job he is doing as mayor while 23% of those who voted for him disapprove of his on-the-job performance.
Forum considers the results accurate within three percentage points, 19 times out of 20.