Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

What The Siena Poll Means For Cuomo's Re-Election Chances

The Siena poll released today revealed some vulnerabilities for Sheriff Andy Cuomo and his re-election campaign, including the revelation that a third party candidate from the left could take a big chunk out of Cuomo's re-election totals and the finding that an overwhelming majority of New Yorkers think the quality of education under Cuomo has either stayed the same or gotten worse (41% say gotten worse; 38% say stayed the same; 15% gotten better.)

But the other number to look at in the Siena poll is how his job performance rating remains underwater:

Overall, Cuomo’s favorable rating dipped slightly: from 58 percent to 34 percent last month to 57 percent favorable, 38 percent unfavorable this month.

His job performance rating remains unchanged, with 45 percent saying Cuomo is doing a good or excellent job as governor.

His personal favorability rating is in a pretty good place for a politician in the fourth year of his first term (not sure what people are seeing in him that I'm not, but whatever...)

But his job performance rating continues to be well underwater, with 45% saying he is doing a good or excellent job as governor and 54% saying he is doing a fair or poor job (1% said they didn't know.)

In a generic, "Would you vote for Cuomo for re-election" question, Cuomo only gets a 50%-41% yes/no response, though those numbers shift in Cuomo's favor if a name is attached to the opponent slot, with Cuomo beating Astorino 58%-28%.

If a third party candidate jumps in the race, those numbers fall to 39% for Cuomo, 24% for Astorino, 24% for a third party candidate.

These are not great numbers going into an election year with a fairly strong Republican candidate opposing him (and by strong, I mean not a circus performer like Crazy Carl Paladino or The Donald) and the possibility of a third party challenger from the left taking votes away from him.

If I had to bet money on the election, I would still take Cuomo for the win, but I think you can make a case that unless Cuomo and his minions are able to smear Astorino as a crazy person or nail him with a scandal, Cuomo's got a real race on his hands that he should be considered the favorite to win but is not the slam dunk that the Paladino race was.

There are two wild cards that I see in the deck right now:

The first is, what does the Working Families Party do in its May convention?

Do they endorse Cuomo (the way Cuomo has been pushing them to) or do they run a third party candidate?

I suspect they'll lukewarmly endorse Cuomo rather than throw a major monkey wrench into the race and risk Cuomo's wrath (and retribution), but you never know how things play out because there is a lot of anger within the WFP ranks even if the leadership might want to make nice with Sheriff Andy.

The second wildcard is what happens in the Moreland investigation.

Preet Bharara has not ruled out investigating Cuomo himself for alleged tampering into the investigations the commission was conducting and if anything unseemly about Cuomo is found and revealed, this poses a serious problem for Sheriff Andy going into the November election.

I suspect Bharara will take his time on the investigation and we may not hear anything much before Election Day (Bharara has already told us that investigations take time, that a baby comes out in nine months but criminal investigations rarely finish forming in that time frame), but Moreland and what Bharara does (if anything) to Sheriff Andy plays a part in how the election plays out in November,

So lots of good news in today's Siena poll if you want to see a diminished Andrew Cuomo going into his re-election battle, and while I wouldn't get too excited about the prospect of Cuomo losing in November, I would say that you should grab some refreshments for the election season because Cuomo's vulnerable and he's going to have an actual battle on his hands.

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