New York State Voters Give Gov. Cuomo a mandate to battle Trump on the national stage



Just over half of New York voters statewide approve (52 to 31 percent) of the job Gov. Andrew Cuomo, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released March 30, up slightly from a 49-to-34 percent approval rating recorded on December 20.

In fact, this is Gov. Cuomo’s best job approval score since a 58-to-32 percent approval rating in a December 22, 2014 survey by Quinnipiac University.

Cuomo gets a hefty 60-to-23 percent approval rating from New York City voters and a 54-to-31 percent thumbs-up from suburban voters.

Enthusiasm dwindles among upstate voters however — 43 percent of them approve of the governor’s job performance while 41 percent disapprove.

Meanwhile, in his first home-state job approval rating since he was inaugurated, President Donald Trump gets a negative 29-to-67 percent score. Republicans approve (79 to 16 percent) and white voters with no college degree are divided, with 47 percent approving and 49 percent disapproving of the job he is doing as president. Every other party, gender, age, racial, area and education group listed disapproves.

While New Yorkers don’t see Gov. Cuomo as presidential material, they are giving him the go-ahead to challenge Trump on the national stage.

When asked the question, “Do you think Andrew Cuomo would make a good president or not?” 52 percent of all state voters said “no” while 37 percent answered “yes.” New York City voters are more evenly divided on the question showing a 43-to-43 percent split. Non-white voters and Democrats say he would make a good president, but by lukewarm margins, while all other groups say he is not ready for the White House. All New York voters statewide say 53-to-40 percent that Cuomo should not run for president in 2020.

At the same time, however, voters say (57 to 38 percent) that Cuomo should become a national leader challenging the policies of the Trump Administration. If Cuomo challenges Trump policies, it would be good for New York, voters say 57 to 35 percent.

“Use the bully pulpit against President Donald Trump, Governor, but stay out of Washington – that’s the mixed message that New Yorkers have for Gov. Andrew Cuomo.”

— Maurice Carroll, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll

“Most of his neighbors tell their governor that he should be a national leader against Trump, and if he is, it will be good for New York,” Carroll added. “But, for now, at least, New York state voters don’t think Gov. Cuomo would be a good president and they tell him not to run. Every politician in the state thinks he’s already running, so he’s not likely to obey voters’ advice.”

Looking at Cuomo’s personal qualities, New York state voters say:

  • 65 – 27 percent that he has strong leadership qualities;
  • 49 – 38 percent that he is honest and trustworthy;
  • 54 – 39 percent that he cares about their needs and problems.

Cuomo more closely represents their political views, say 31 percent of voters, including 45 percent of Democrats.

Another 16 percent, including 24 percent of Democrats, say New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio more closely represents their views and 49 percent say neither represents their views.

Approval ratings for other New York State leaders are:

  • 58 – 34 percent for Sen. Charles Schumer, down from 67 – 23 percent December 20;
  • 56 – 22 percent for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, virtually unchanged from December;
  • 41 – 19 percent for State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli;
  • 55 – 22 percent for State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

New York State voters approve 52 – 17 percent of the way Preet Bharara did his job as U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, but there is not a groundswell for him to jump into politics in 2018: 10 percent think he should run for governor; 6 percent say he should try for the U.S. Senate and 21 percent say he should run for State Attorney General.

From March 23 to March 27, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,446 New York State voters, with live interviewers calling landlines and cell phones. The poll has a margin of error of 2.6 percentage points.

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