There’s good news and bad news for incumbent state legislators.
Thirty-four percent of voters surveyed by Siena College gave their representative in the state Assembly an “A” or “B” grade and 36 percent gave their senator a passing grade as well.
The bad news for senators, however, is that 51 percent of voters surveyed said they would support someone other than the incumbent in the upcoming November election. Only 31 percent of those polled said they would vote to re-elect their incumbent senator and 18 percent either having no opinion or remain undecided.
“Republicans and independent voters are much more negative toward their incumbent senators than are Democrats, and upstaters and downstate suburban voters are much more negative than are voters in New York City,” said Siena College spokesman Steve Greenberg.
Democrats have a tenuous 32-29 majority in the Senate, with one vacancy.
Thirty-three percent of respondents said they would support a larger majority for the Democrats, while 27 percent wanted the GOP to regain control of the Senate. Thirty-four percent supported the Senate remaining closely divided.
The survey polled 788 registered voters and was conducted between Aug. 9 and Aug. 16.
In the race for governor, Democratic candidate Andrew Cuomo’s wide lead over his potential Republican rivals, former Rep. Rick Lazio and Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino largely remains the same.
“With less than 11 weeks until election day, Andrew Cuomo continues to be the prohibitive favorite to be elected New York’s next governor. Neither Rick Lazio nor Carl Paladino has made a dent in the favorable view voters have of Cuomo,” Greenberg said. “Nor have they made much progress in closing the large electoral gap Cuomo enjoys over both of them – individually or collectively,”
While both Lazio and Paladino have come out in strong opposition to a proposed Muslim community center near the site of the World Trade Center, their criticism of the project has done little to move the needle in their direction.
Cuomo would defeat Lazio by a margin of 60 percent to 26 percent if the election were held today. Paladino would meet a similar defeat, 60 percent to 27 percent.
Still, most voters say they oppose building the community center known as Park51, which includes a restaurant, swimming pool and worship space two blocks north of the site, the survey found.
Sixty-three percent of New Yorkers believe the project should be placed elsewhere, while 27 percent support the building of the project at that location.
But nearly two-thirds of voters, or 64 percent, believe that the developers have the constitutional right to build the mosque and community center at the site while 28 percent say they do not.