ALBANY, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) - New Yorkers say they want Gov.-elect Andrew Cuomo to focus on revitalizing the state's economy and balancing its budget, according to a new survey released Monday.
When it comes to Cuomo's coming inaugural address, two-thirds of the registered voters polled by the Siena Research Institute think the primary topics should be fiscal.
Forty-four percent say Cuomo, currently the state's attorney general, should focus on the economy, while 22 percent say the focus should be resolving the state's budget crisis.
Similarly, when asked what "gift" they would put under the new governor's Christmas tree if they could play Santa Claus, nearly one-third of voters would give a revitalized upstate economy and another 29 percent would give a balanced state budget with no new taxes.
"The issues voters want to hear Andrew Cuomo talk about as he takes the oath of office to become New York's next governor are the economy, jobs and the state budget," Siena College pollster Steven Greenburg said in a statement.
"While New Yorkers certainly care about education, health care, state government reform and myriad other issues, if Cuomo was forced to limit his inaugural address to just one topic, voters overwhelmingly want it to be one that relates to the fiscal picture of the state."
When it comes to solving the state's budget woes, nearly three-quarters of voters polled say they oppose cutting education by $1 billion to help close the deficit. More than two-thirds oppose cutting Medicaid and health care by $1 billion.
However, increasing income tax rates on million-dollar earners has the support of nearly three-quarters of those surveyed, according to the poll.
"Even a majority of Republicans and conservative voters say they would vote for a millionaire's tax," Greenberg said.
The Siena survey was conducted Dec. 6-8 by telephone calls to 806 New York registered voters. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.