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Calgary Mayor & Council Approval Continues to Slide

Posted June 25th, 2024 in Alberta Election, Alberta Politics, Calgary, Media Release, News by Marc Henry


Media Release




(CALGARY) Public approval for Calgary Mayor and Council has declined since December, breaking record lows set at the end of last year, according to a new ThinkHQ survey.


Mayor Jyoti Gondek


Jyoti Gondek’s political woes with Calgary voters continue this spring unabated. The mayor presently has 26% approval compared to 64% disapproval, a four-point slip in popularity over the past six months. Almost one-half (48%) of voters say they “strongly disapprove” of the mayor, compared to only 7% reporting “strong” approval. This is the lowest approval rating for any sitting Calgary mayor.



  • Men tend to offer considerably harsher ratings of the mayor than women
  • Appraisals of Gondek tend to decline with age, with those in the 55+ cohort offering the most negative assessments of the mayor, along with those in the highest household income bracket
  • Disapproval for the mayor is less concentrated in the inner city


Calgary City Councillors


Calgarians were asked to rate their ward councillor’s performance since they were elected in 2021. On average, councillors receive increasingly negative ratings from constituents, with 33% saying they approve of their councillor compared to 47% saying they disapprove. This represents a decline in councillor approval over the past six months, down 4 points since our last survey in December. This is a new all-time low in Councillor ratings in Calgary.


Councillor performance ratings are reasonably consistent across demographic strata, with some variation, particularly in negative evaluations.


  • Residents in new and suburban communities offer fewer negative ratings of their councillors
  • Men tend to be more negative about their councillor than women


City Council Overall


Council’s overall approval with citizens tends to track in line (though generally behind) that of the mayor. This June, one-quarter (25%) of Calgarians say they approve of the performance of their municipal council overall, compared to 66% who disapprove. Again, negative ratings tend to be more intense than positive ones. 25% is a record low for Council overall.


  • As with previous measures, age and gender influence performance ratings, with men and older voters decidedly more negative in their appraisals




Commenting on these survey results, ThinkHQ President Marc Henry notes:


“These ratings are unprecedentedly low. They’ve managed to break their own record for low approval ratings set in December of last year, and it seems driven primarily by negative public reactions to policies like the single-use bag bylaw and blanket rezoning.


It’s interesting.  Calgary is currently in a state of local emergency due to the failure of a critical water feeder main. In times like these, there’s a tendency for the public to ‘rally to the leader’; often, politicians who capably lead during a crisis are rewarded with public support. No such boost for Mayor Gondek, or if there is, it’s masked by unmeasured lower ratings driven by other issues (or perhaps she’s not seen as competently leading on the water main issue?).


With numbers like this, Gondek’s re-election prospects are pretty grim. There are 482 days until the next election. It’s taken her almost 3-years to get to this point, so turning things around is pretty tough. Barring a significant vote split in the next election, if she runs, Gondek has to be considered a long shot for re-election with numbers like this.


Councillors must also be doing some soul-searching at this stage, with their record-low December approval numbers dropping again. It should be noted that the average reported for Councillor ratings is not uniform—some fare better than others. Interestingly, those who have seen the most negative turn in their ratings also backed blanket rezoning.  I guess not surprising, given public sentiment on the issue and that this lightning-rod was front and centre in the public domain for almost a month of Public Hearing.”  


Click here to view the full release and methodology




Media Inquiries:

Marc Henry

President, ThinkHQ Public Affairs, Inc.