Jessica M. Karmasek Nov. 1, 2010, 11:49am
NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - With just a day left before the general election, New York's Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo maintains a sizable lead over GOP opponent Carl Paladino.
According to the findings of a Siena College Research Institute poll of likely voters released Sunday, Cuomo is ahead of Paladino 58 percent to 33 percent.
"Two days from Election Day and voters continue to overwhelmingly say that Andrew Cuomo is their choice for governor," Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said in a statement.
"No matter how you slice the numbers, Cuomo has a seemingly invincible lead. He leads Paladino 78-15 in New York City, 54-36 in the downstate suburbs and 47-41 among upstate voters."
Among Democrats, Cuomo has a "commanding" 84-10 lead, the poll found.
Meanwhile, the survey shows Paladino has improved with Republicans and now leads Cuomo 62-27. He also has made "considerable inroads" with independent voters, among whom Cuomo leads 48-40, down significantly from 61-26 previously.
The Siena survey also found Cuomo leads the Buffalo real estate developer by 15 points with men and 35 points with women.
The poll results also show that among Paladino voters, 70 percent -- up from 62 percent -- say they are "absolutely certain" to vote for him with no chance that they will change their minds.
Those voting for the current New York attorney general are even more locked in, with 82 percent saying they are absolutely certain to support him, up from 70 percent.
As for how voters view the two candidates, "Cuomo's favorability rating, 57 to 38 percent, remains strong, although it is down a little, and Paladino's negative favorability rating, 31 to 62 percent, although two-to-one negative, is up from three-to-one negative in the last Siena poll," Greenberg said.
The pollster said Cuomo's rating fell most with independents, who now view him favorably by a slim 51-47 margin.
While Paladino improved significantly with independents -- by a nearly two-to-one margin -- they still view him unfavorably, the survey found. In fact, only Republicans, conservatives and those voters favorable to the Tea Party give Paladino a positive favorability rating.
"Six in 10 voters think that Cuomo has a better chance of turning his campaign promises into reality as governor and 27 percent think that Paladino has a better chance. Nine percent of voters say neither has a chance," Greenberg said.
Also according to the Siena Institute poll released Sunday, New York's race for attorney general is now in a dead heat.
Republican Dan Donovan and Democrat Eric Schneiderman, who previously led by seven points, are tied at 44 percent each, the poll found.
"The race for Attorney General was tight two weeks ago. And now it can't get any tighter. Dan Donovan has picked up seven points to tie the race at 44 to 44 percent, erasing a 44 to 37 percent lead previously held by Eric Schneiderman," Greenberg said in a statement.
While the state senator Schneiderman improved his support among Democrats, the district attorney Donovan improved his support among Republicans and now has a majority of independents supporting him, the poll found.
"Schneiderman continues to lead big in New York City. However, his previous narrow lead of 44 to 41 percent in the downstate suburbs has now become a 21-point lead for Donovan. And Schneiderman trimmed Donovan's upstate lead from 12 points to nine points," Greenberg explained.
"Voters have a clear choice between two candidates whose campaigns have certainly highlighted their philosophical differences and approaches to the Attorney General's office. Neither one has persuaded a majority of voters to support them, and with 12 percent undecided heading into the final days of the campaign, this race looks like the proverbial coin toss," he said of the race.
From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at email@example.com.