Olympics: Poll finds locals back LA 2024 bid

A telephone poll finds 88 percent of Angelenos support Los Angeles hosting the 2024 Olympics (AFP Photo/Mark Ralston)

Los Angeles (AFP) - A telephone poll finding 88 percent of Angelenos support Los Angeles hosting the 2024 Olympics shows the Games are "in LA's DNA," Mayor Eric Garcetti said Tuesday.

The poll, conducted in January and February by the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University, used a demographically representative sample of 2,425 responders and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus three percent.

Of those who said they supported a 2024 Olympics in Los Angeles, 56 percent were "strongly supportive," while 32 percent were "somewhat supportive."

Among those opposed, traffic congestion and cost were cited as reasons.

Los Angeles is chasing a third Olympics after successfully hosting the Games in 1932 and 1984. No US city has hosted the Olympics since the Atlanta Games in 1996.

Last week, Los Angeles, Paris, Rome and Budapest filed their formal candidacy papers with the International Olympic Committee, which will vote on the 2024 host city on September 13, 2017 in Lima.

Casey Wasserman, chairman of the LA 2024 bid committee, pounced on the poll results, calling them a "strong indication" that Los Angeles residents "have confidence in our fiscally responsible, sustainable and innovative plan for the Games."

The poll was the first major independent survey gauging local Olympic support, after internal polls conducted by those organizing the effort found some 81 percent favored hosting the Games.

Local opposition can scupper a bid.

Hamburg's efforts ended in December after a referendum in which the German city voted 51.6 percent against staging the Games.

Los Angeles itself stepped in to put forward a bid after the US Olympic Committee's original 2024 candidate, Boston, pulled out in the face of public opposition.