[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/20/art.bloomberg.gi.jpg caption="Bloomberg gets a strong approval rating in a new poll."](CNN) - He may be struggling to woo the political rank and file, but a new poll suggests that Michael Bloomberg is getting a far warmer reception among his city’s voters: in a Quinnipiac poll released Tuesday, nearly two out of three New Yorkers approve of how Michael Bloomberg is handling his duties as mayor, giving him double-digit leads over two Democratic challengers as he runs for re-election to a third term.
Sixty-five percent of those questioned in the new survey approve of the job Bloomberg's doing as mayor. While that's down 4 points from a Quinnipiac poll conducted last month, it’s still an impressive showing — especially given the current tough economic news, and the grim outlook for New York City's budget.
If the November 2009 mayoral election were held today, the poll indicates that Bloomberg would top New York City Comptroller William Thompson 50 to 33 percent, and would beat Rep. Anthony Weiner 48 to 36 percent.
The Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-Independent has faced resistance from some GOP and Independence Party leaders over his quest to gain their support for his re-election bid. Forty-one percent of the New Yorkers questioned in the new survey say Bloomberg should run for re-election as an Independent, with 19 percent suggesting he should run as a Democrat and 11 percent as a Republican.
The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted February 17-22, with 984 New York City registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.