Cuomo's lead at 24 points

Jessica M. Karmasek Oct. 5, 2010, 11:34am


NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo leads his Republican opponent, Carl Paladino, by more than 20 points, according to a recent poll of likely voters in the state.

A Siena Research Institute poll released on Tuesday found Cuomo, a Democrat, is ahead of the Buffalo real estate developer by 24 points.

According to the survey results, about six of 10 voters had a negative view of Paladino and agreed that he is "a loose cannon, who doesn't have the temperament to be governor."

The poll was conducted Oct. 3-4, days after Paladino accused the attorney general of marital infidelity and was involved in a shouting match with a New York Post editor who asked for proof of the charge.

Paladino was on his way to address the New York State Business Council dinner on Wednesday night when, as he was walking in, he was approached by Post State Editor and radio personality Fred Dicker and a few other reporters.

Dicker asked Paladino what evidence he had that Cuomo had cheated on his ex-wife.

The Tea Party-backed Paladino alleged last Tuesday that Cuomo was unfaithful years ago to his now ex-wife. Paladino offered no proof of his claim, and he made it mere minutes after angrily declaring his 10-year-old daughter -- a child of his own affair 10 years ago -- off limits to the press.

Wednesday night, Paladino turned the tables on the editor, assailing Dicker and the newspaper for its coverage of his daughter.

The Post, according to a statement on Paladino's campaign website, had sent a photographer to the Buffalo home where his daughter lives with her mother. The photographer, his camp said, attempted to take photos of the child through the windows and tried to follow the girl to a playground.

"I want to know why you sent your goons after my daughter, Fred," Paladino demanded of Dicker.

"You send another goon to my daughter's house and I'll take you out, buddy!"

According to Tuesday's Siena poll results, Cuomo was supported by 56 percent of voters, with 32 percent backing Paladino.

In a Siena poll of registered voters last month, Cuomo led by 33 points.

Since then, Conservative Party candidate Rick Lazio has abandoned the race and that party switched its endorsement to Paladino.

"Cuomo continues to enjoy a very strong favorability rating," Steven Greenberg, pollster for the Siena Research Institute in Loudonville, New York, said in a statement. "While Paladino has quickly become very well-known among New York voters, it is not in a good way."

Cuomo is viewed favorably by 56 percent of voters and unfavorably by 37 percent. Paladino is viewed favorably by 30 percent and unfavorably by 59 percent, according to the survey.

About 55 percent of voters agreed that Cuomo's government experience "is what we need in order to move New York towards fiscal health," according to the survey. About 45 percent agreed that Paladino's business experience is what the state needs.

"At this point, likely voters don't look at Paladino favorably. With the exception of taxes, they don't think he will be as effective as Cuomo in addressing the issues, and they overwhelmingly say he's running the more negative campaign.

"Furthermore, by a two-to-one margin, voters say Cuomo as governor, more than Paladino, would make them say they are 'proud to be a New Yorker.' Paladino has a lot of work to do but he successfully came from behind in the Republican primary to overwhelmingly win that race," Greenberg said.

The telephone survey of 636 likely registered voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points, according to Siena.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at

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