New York voters aren’t sure or have no opinion about whether Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy should remain on Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s re-election ticket in 2014, according to a new poll.
A wide-ranging Siena College survey released Monday shows 32 percent of those polled believe Cuomo should keep Duffy around if he runs for re-election next year, compared to 22 percent who believe Cuomo should dump the former Rochester mayor.
The largest contingent, however, is unsure—46 percent, according to the poll.
Why is that? The same poll showed the majority of New York voters—69 percent—have no opinion of Duffy or aren’t familiar with him. Sixteen percent said they had a favorable opinion of him, compared to 14 percent with an unfavorable view.
Siena pollster Steve Greenberg said Duffy’s approval rating has remained stable during his nearly three years in office. Duffy’s numbers are similar to those then-Lt. Gov. David Paterson had in January 2007, when Siena found 75 percent of voters were unfamiliar with him.
Greenberg said the poll results show the selection of a lieutenant governor have little bearing on elections results.
“It’s the nature of the position,” Greenberg said. “Most people when they’re voting for president are voting for president, not vice president. I think it’s even more true when we’re talking about a governor-lieutenant governor ticket. Voters are voting for the governor. They’re not voting for the lieutenant governor.”
The poll comes as speculation continues to surround Duffy’s future in the administration.
The first-term lieutenant governor interviewed for a job with the Rochester Business Alliance earlier this year before taking his name out of the running, but hasn’t ruled out taking a job with the business group in the future.
Duffy has said he will make his electoral plans known next year when Cuomo formally announces his re-election plans.
Cuomo’s office declined comment Monday.
Siena polled 806 New York voters between Nov. 11 and 14 for the survey. It had a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.
(AP file photo)