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The Empire

poll: voters like Cuomo, don't love legislators

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Governor Cuomo has across-the-board appeal, according to the latest Marist poll. (azi paybarah / wnyc)

Marist Pollster Lee Miringoff has an explanation for why Andrew Cuomo's latest poll numbers are so high with just about every different kind of New York voter.

"They see him as a moderate," Miringoff said in an interview with NY1 tonight about the poll.

"We hear so much about polarization in our politics today," Miringoff said. "Andrew Cuomo is not a polarizing figure. Democrats, Republicans, independents, New York City, the suburbs and upstaters all pretty much saying, 'Hmm, I kind of like this guy.' "

Miringof, smartly, explains the fault lines Cuomo is deftly navigating at the moment.

"The gap in New York State politics today is not Democrats and Republicans against Cuomo, or for Cuomo. It's between the executive, Andrew Cuomo, and the State Assembly and State legislature," he said.

"Could the overall chamber be held in lower esteem? Not really," said Miringoff. Only 1 percent said either the State Assembly, or State Senate, were doing an "excellent" job.

My favorite number from the poll: when asked if Cuomo is changing "Albany for the better," voters who have a union member in their household agreed, 57-29.

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The Empire

Nate Silver: Cuomo is 'still introducing himself' to New Yorkers

Monday, January 24, 2011

Nate Silver has a counter-intuitive take on why Andrew Cuomo is proceeding so cautiously into his first budget presentation: despite the large election he won, he isn't coming to Albany with much of a mandate.

Appearing on the New Yrok Times Close-Up this weekend, Silver said:

Cuomo won a weird election. it was more of an anti-[Carl]Paladino vote. It wasn't really a mandate, despite the size of the margin. He had a very low turnout throughout the state. So, he's still introducing himself to New Yorkers. And I don't think we've really fully formed our opinions about him yet. So I think, especially now, his first major action - the way it's portrayed - could shape perceptions of him for months.

It is true that Cuomo won a large margin without doing much to raise the profile of the race. (He declined several opportunities to appear on national tv shows, or to give lengthy, possibly news-making speeches in places like Crain's business breakfast or the Association for a Better New York.)

But a recent Siena poll found Cuomo, and his agenda, pretty well-supported.

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The Empire

'Lowest approval rating since taking office'

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Mayor Bloomberg's approval rating. (Marist Poll)

According to a new NY1-Marist poll, Mayor Bloomberg's approval rating is now at 37 percent, the "lowest approval rating since taking office."In October, it was 50 percent.

Most of it is chalked up to the botched response to the blizzard. But, the CityTime scandal and rollout of the new schools chancellor probably didn't help either.

When asked about the snow storm, 71 percent of adults said they disapproved of how the mayor handled it. When asked about the legacy the mayor will leave behind, only 39 percent thought it would be a positive one.

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The Takeaway

Majority of Public Deems Afghanistan War 'Not Worth Fighting'

Friday, December 17, 2010

The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll shows that 60 percent of Americans say the Afghanistan war is "not worth fighting." This is a record low in public support of the war. Mary Galeti, the wife of Afghanistan veteran First Lieutenant Russell Galeti, and Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs and author of "How Wars End: Why We Always Fight the Last Battle," describe their observations of public opinion, and what it might mean for the Obama administration's efforts in Afghanistan going forward.

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The Empire

Hitting the Wal-Mart poll

Monday, December 13, 2010

The knocking down of polls is one of the more direct forms of aggression in the full-contact sports that is politics.

The latest example comes courtesy of Dan Morris, a spokesman for the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, who is trying to bat down the results of a poll showing New Yorkers would be receptive to the opening of a Wal-Mart store here.

Morris' method of attack: connect the poll to Bloomberg:

"The poll was conducted by Doug Schoen, a member of Michael Bloomberg’s inner circle, who now joins Bloomberg’s campaign manager Bradley Tusk and Bloomberg’s Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson in shilling for Walmart. Basic details about methodology, sample size, and interview questions have been deliberately withheld because this is not a credible poll. It was bought and paid for by Walmart. It’s just as deceitful as the polling Bloomberg’s operatives promoted during the 2009 mayoral race: they eventually admitted they knew it had been a tight race all along, after misleading voters and the public."

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The Empire

Unpopular Budget Cuts

Monday, December 13, 2010

Siena's poll this morning reminds us why cutting the state budget isn't easy:

“By a better than three-to-one margin, voters say they would vote against cutting education by $1 billion to help close the state’s $9 billion budget deficit.  By a slightly smaller, but still overwhelming margin, they would also vote against cutting Medicaid and health care by $1 billion to help balance the budget.  Voters of every party and region oppose these cuts to help close the budget deficit,” Greenberg said.

Also, 44 percent say if there's one topic they want Cuomo to address in his inaugural speech, it's revitalizing the economy.

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Transportation Nation

STUDY: NJ Gov's Decision to Kill ARC Tunnel Growing More Popular with Time

Thursday, December 09, 2010

(Alex Goldmark, Transportation Nation) NJ Governor Chris Christie keeps getting more support from voters for his decision to kill the trans-Hudson transit tunnel, according to a study released today by Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Christie took a stand against what he called wasteful spending in October when he killed the ARC transit tunnel that would have doubled NJ Transit capacity across between New York and New Jersey. At the time it was the biggest infrastructure project in the nation. The federal government wants $271 million back for what they spent on it. Christie's decision made him the darling of fiscal conservatives craving firm budget belt tightening. In New Jersey, just barely half of voters, 51 percent, supported his decision at the time. That number has grown to 56 percent according to the Rutgers poll.

“It is clear that across New Jersey, residents continue to support the governor’s decision to cancel the project,” said David Redlawsk, director of the Rutgers poll and professor of political science at Rutgers said in an emailed statement.

The poll also asked about a proposal to extend the New York City #7 subway line across the Hudson river, finding 74 percent of respondents—all New Jersey residents—support that concept. That project is only an idea at this point, without an official price tag, and would likely involve New York City paying a portion of the cost, something that was not the case with the ARC tunnel. Full study and statistical fun after the jump.

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The Empire

If you budgeted based on polls, you would...

Thursday, December 09, 2010

be left with few options.

From Quinnipiac:

56 – 30 percent margin, voters would rather cut services than raise taxes to balance.

Also:

52 – 43 percent against layoffs for state workers;
56 – 32 percent in support of furloughs for state workers;
56 – 37 percent against reducing pension benefits for state workers;

78 – 19 percent against reducing state aid to public schools.

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The Empire

Half of indys not behind Obama; Bloomberg 2012 dims

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Some Marist poll numbers for 2012:

50 percent of independents say they won't vote for Obama.

And in a three way race:
45-Obama
31-Palin
15-Bloomberg

Also, 61 percent of voters nationally do not want to see Bloomberg run for president.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

New York State Returns

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Azi Paybarah, WNYC reporter and blogger, and Ester Fuchs, professor of international and public affairs and political science at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), and former advisor to Mayor Bloomberg, examine the results from yesterday's voting.                                                                           

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The Takeaway

Polling Trends Leading to Election Day

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Pollster describe elections like a horse race for a good reason: leads shrink, grow, and change hands, until at the very end, someone crosses the finish line first, and a winner is crowned.

John Zogby, president and CEO of polling firm Zogby International has been monitoring these changes in the final days leading up to Election Day.

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WNYC News

Poll: A Majority of New Jersey Residents Support Christie's Decision to Kill ARC Tunnel

Friday, October 29, 2010

A new poll finds that among New Jersey residents who were asked, a majority support Gov. Chris Christie's decision to kill the Hudson River rail tunnel project.

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The Takeaway

Gazing into Mid-Term Election's Crystal Ball

Friday, October 29, 2010

Four days away from the mid-term elections, there remain a few unpredictable Senate and Congressional races that could shift the national balance of political power. As the hours tick by, what will bring out the critical voters in states like Washington, West Virginia or Illinois?  

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The New York Vote

A Professional Reader of Voters’ Minds Discusses His ‘Blunt Instrument’

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

WNYC

In the fourth of a five-part series called "The New York Vote," a partnership between WNYC and Capital New York, Mickey Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute explains how he moved from polling skeptic to believer.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Polling Roundtable

Friday, October 22, 2010

Maurice Carroll, Quinnipiac University Polling Institute Director, Dr. Don Levy, director of  the Siena Research Institute, and Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion, talk about polling results in the New York State gubernatorial race.

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Transportation Nation

NYT Poll Finds 22% Would Cut Transportation to Balance Budget

Monday, October 18, 2010

(Alex Goldmark, Transportation Nation) Buried deep within an excellent New York Times poll about the governor's race is a striking finding: 22% of New Yorkers would cut transportation to balance the budget. Given the choice of what to cut, transportation was the runaway choice over health care, and education.

This is the first time this question has been asked and there's a little unpacking to do here, so we called Marjorie Connelly, an Editor in the Survey Department of the New York Times.

"If you had to choose, which of the state funded services do you think should be cut, local education, higher education, health care, or transportation?"

There were no follow up  questions, or specific definitions about what constitutes "transportation." So, Connelly posits that for this survey, of which this was just one tiny part, when respondents hear transportation they aren't thinking roads and bridges so much as commuter trains. "I think people are hearing public transit. They are probably thinking subways, and perhaps Metro-North type trains."

A few extra correlations run by the NYT support this.  Connelly tells us they found that "the further you got away from New York City the more likely people were to pick transportation" as the area to cut. The less you use public transit the more you are likely to say cut it. That's logical.

Even in New York City, transportation was the plurality, but there's a gaping hole between New York City and upstate Downstate 38 percent chose transportation to cut, but upstate, far more people chose transportation to cut—58 percent of respondents.

No other factor seemed to predict who wants to cut transportation, not age, not race, not income, just location, a proxy for likelihood to use transit.

The answer might have changed if some sense of what the relative expenditures are for health care, education compared transportation. That would give a sense of which service is eating up most of the budget. If you are curious, New York State spends $4.3 billion on transportation compared to $14.2 billion on health, and $23.1 billion on local education not counting an additional $5.6 billion on higher education.  That doesn't Medicaid spending.

In the same poll, 51 percent of respondents support reducing pension benefits for future state employees, and 35% think its a good idea to lay off 5% of state employees to balance the budget.

Other budget categories that were not asked about are human/social services, mental hygiene, public safety,and environment, categories with spending levels closer to transportation. It would be interesting to see how transportation stacks up against an expanded list.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Polling Roundtable

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Maurice CarrollQuinnipiac University Polling Institute Director; Dr. Don Levy, Director of  the Siena Research Institute; and Lee Miringoff, Director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion (MIPO), talk about polling results in the New York State gubernatorial race and why they might see different results.

→ Share your thoughts on polling at It's A Free Country!

WNYC News

Siena Poll Finds NY Democrats Close to Losing Senate

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The first poll to look at statewide Senate races finds that Democrats may be struggling to retain their hold on the State Senate in November.

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The Empire

'Cuomo is going to play a major role' in state senate fights

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Andrew Cuomo has made it clear he is running not as part of Albany’s current political establishment, but very much as an outside agent hoping to reform it, dramatically.

Which, for a gubernatorial candidate, is smart.

But for those currently in Albany, like the Democrats who hold a narrow majority in the State Senate, it can be a hurdle to overcome. Or so you’d think.

State Senator Jeff Klein, who heads the Democrats’ efforts to keep and expand their majority in that chamber, said Cuomo’s anti-Albany message is helpful to them. Also, Klein said the anti-incumbency message is a winning talking point for Senate Democrats because “a lot of Republican incumbents are much more long-serving than ours.”

Klein said his party’s gubernatorial nominee will help them in their fight to expand their majority in the State Senate which. Today’s Siena poll showed Democratic incumbents in two contested races below 50% against their Republican rivals.

“I think Andrew Cuomo helps us tremendously,” Klein said on a conference call with reporters this morning.

“I think Andrew Cuomo is going to play a major role in making sure that the Democrats keep the majority,” said Klein. Cuomo is “our party standard bearer [and] if he wants to move forward with his very ambitious agenda he needs a Democratic Senate that he can work with.”

Cuomo’s message, as Klein describes it, is “property tax cap, no new taxes, lower spending.”

“He’s espousing a message that resonates with voters. And by the way, each one of our challengers, as well as our incumbents, all espouse,” then, Klein added this important caveat: “incumbents who have races, of course.”

I asked Klein if he’d like Cuomo to tweak his anti-Albany, anti-legislature message to specify it’s Republicans, not Democrats, who’ve made a mess of the State Senate.

Klein demurred, saying, “I think when he [Cuomo] says the legislature he means the entire legislature. Again, I think we’re going to benefit, I believe, by the anti-incumbent messages out there. Again, it’s no secret that a lot of Republican incumbents are much more long-serving than ours. I think that not only is going to help us by promoting our candidates who are candidates for change, mostly women, who are running an anti-Albany campaign locally.”

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The Empire

Indys swing to McMahon in CT

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Thanks to a flip among independent voters, Republican Senate candidate Linda McMahon cut Democrat Dick Blumenthal's lead to just 3 percent.

In Quinnipiac's poll of likely voters in Connecticut, McMahon trails Blumenthal 46-49 percent. That's closer than the Q poll on September 14, which had shown Blumenthal leading 51-45 percent.

In the latest poll, independent voters flipped from Blumenthal to McMahon.

Two weeks ago, Blumenthal split independent voters with McMahon, 47-46.

In today's poll, McMahon is pulling away among independent voters, 49-44 percent.

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