Polling the AG Race

“I just got polled,” a reader emailed recently.

This reader--who still has a landline in their Manhattan apartment and is a registered Democrat--took detailed notes about the call, including the fact that the Andrew Cuomo’s last name was pronounced “Coo-mo” by the caller.

The survey was about the AG’s race, and they were testing, among other things, which attribute is most important in picking the next AG.

The choices:

 “Cuomo's best choice.”

“They are the only candidate who has identified investigated and prosecuted misdeeds on Wall Street”

“Most progressive candidate”

“Served in military”

“Most qualified”

“Know how to get things done in Albany”

“They will fight for people who can't fight for themselves”

“Put people of NY ahead of special interests”

“Proven record of protecting New Yorkers”

“Restore trust in government”

“Best chance to win in November”

“Someone from outside the system who will be able to clean up corruption and dysfunction in Albany”

“Created nationally recognized effort to combat drunk driving”

“Only candidate who has never run for office before”

I’d be interesting in seeing which of these qualities scored highest.

Also, the caller wanted to know which critical statement made by opponents already was most disconcerting.

“They don't understand how to police Wall Street”

"They work for a firm that donated money to political candidates to get access to government”

“Too liberal and don't represent New Yorkers”

“Too rich to be in touch with average New Yorkers”

“Did not strongly support reforming Rockefeller drug laws”

“Have been in Albany too long and won't be able to bring changes to state”

“Have donated money to Republican candidates”

“Once registered as Republican”

“Not supported a woman's ability to work part time while raising a family served as elected official”

For the most part, the candidates have been shaping their identities through free media and sparsely-watched debates. Feedback from these kinds of surveys will have a real impact once the paid media (i.e. television and radio ads!) start airing.