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Richard Piatt Reporting Public opinion of Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson has never been high statewide, and his active role in organizing Presidential protests yesterday didn't change that.
Love him, hate him, there's no guessing about how Salt Lake City's mayor feels about any issue. In theory, that's a desirable quality in a public official. But our poll shows politically it can be risky.
It seems Rocky Anderson is always taking on somebody. Saturday it was employees of a tow-truck company who, Anderson says, unjustly booted cars near a downtown event. He pushed city council to regulate the car towing 'booting' business. And tonight, after a year it has.
Helping organize a protest rally during the President's visit is what really has people taking sides about Rocky Anderson this week. According to an exclusive Survey USA poll for Eyewitness News, 71-percent disagree with the Mayor's decision to help organize the protest in Pioneer Park yesterday. 27 percent say they agree with the Mayor's decision.
The sentiments of the majority are easy to spot in letters to the editor, emails, phone calls to radio talk shows, and common conversation.
We also asked how people felt about protesting the war, in general. Eight percent say they think it's wrong to protest, period. 52 percent say it's okay to question the war, but wrong to protest it. 37 percent say it's okay to protest.
Rocky disagrees with the majority, seeing it as a responsibility to speak out.
Rocky Anderson, Salt Lake City Mayor: “You know, if you see things are going wrong, you’ve got to stand up and say so.”
It may not be the majority, but there are plenty of people who agree with him. A lot of people speculate Rocky Anderson is speaking out more because he's not running for re-election, and feels he has nothing to lose. He told us tonight, that's not true, in fact he hasn't decided whether he's running again or not.