How Do Denver Voters Feel About the Mayor, Homelessness?

Morgan Whitley
August 30, 2023

A new poll asked Denver voters how they felt about Mayor Mike Johnston, homelessness and the direction of the city. Overall, Denverites are equally split.

The Colorado Polling Institute describes itself as a nonpartisan nonprofit funded independent of campaigns and political parties. On Wednesday, the CPI released its analysis of how Denver voters feel about a number of issues.

Overall View on Denver’s Direction

Overall, Denverites are equally split on the direction of the city. According to the poll, 44% of voters said it’s headed in the right direction and 44% said it’s on the wrong track. Two-thirds of voters said they feel safe in Denver, but according to CPI, the feeling is soft as a majority say they feel somewhat safe.

Among those surveyed, the poll looked at what topics voters prioritized most.

Those who had a more negative view of the city prioritized crime and safety. Those who prioritized the cost of living and homelessness also had a pessimistic outlook on the city’s direction.

On the other hand, those who prioritized housing affordability, climate/environment, and walking/biking/transit had a more optimistic view of Denver.

Homelessness in Denver

For voters, homelessness is also a priority. According to the CPI poll, voters aged 18-29 prioritize housing affordability and cost of living more than homelessness. Voters aged 65 and up are tied between crime, housing affordability and homelessness.

The poll found that Democrats equally prioritize housing affordability and homelessness, while Republicans prioritize crime above homelessness. Those who are unaffiliated place homelessness above other issues by a wide margin, according to CPI.

Mayor Mike Johnston

Homelessness and Johnston go hand in hand, as the new mayor immediately declared a state of emergency over the issue. According to CPI, Johnston’s homeless plan is generally approved, but a majority of voters haven’t heard enough to form an opinion.

Overall, Johnston has a positive image in voters’ minds. He has only been in office for a little less than two months.

This poll from CPI took place from Aug. 17-18 and surveyed likely 2024 general election voters.