By BRIAN BARBER & P.J. LASSEK World Staff Writers
Mayor Dewey Bartlett won’t face re-election until 2013, but a new Tulsa World-sponsored poll shows that, if the election happened today, 58 percent of Tulsans would vote for another candidate.

The scientific survey indicates 26 percent would vote for Bartlett, while 16 percent didn’t know or refused to answer.

That could give other candidates the confidence to challenge Bartlett, SoonerPoll.com’s Bill Shapard said, but two years is forever in politics, so a lot could change for the mayor.

“It’s a long time, and a lot of people may be very forgiving of Dewey and forget about the past,” he said.

“This polling was taken in an environment where we haven’t seen yet whether this new City Council will be able to work with the mayor and everyone pull in the same direction. The jury is really still out.”

The new City Council, which will have seven new members and two incumbents  –  Councilors Jack Henderson and G.T. Bynum  –  will be sworn in Dec. 5.

The poll asked whether Tulsans are optimistic about the new council being able to work together to advance the city.

In response, 82 percent said they were somewhat, very or extremely optimistic, while 13 percent had some level of pessimism and 5 percent didn’t know or refused to answer.

Shapard pointed out that a near majority  –  49 percent  –  chose the somewhat optimistic option.

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Bill is the founder of SoonerPoll.com and ShapardResearch, a full service market research firm based in Oklahoma City. Bill began his career in polling after working on a major campaign in Oklahoma from 1996 until founding SoonerPoll in 2004. Under Bill’s leadership, SoonerPoll has become the leading public opinion polling company in the state of Oklahoma conducting more public opinion polls for Oklahoma news media than all other pollsters combined since 2006. Bill’s commitment to go above and beyond the AAPOR ethical guidelines of minimum disclosure ensures that SoonerPoll produces quality results every time. Bill has lectured at Oklahoma State University on developing polling methodologies, data collection processes, and advanced likely voter sampling techniques. Bill also serves as an on-air political commentator for Oklahoma television stations.

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