Poll: Paterson Job Approval Increases to 21

ALBANY—After a concerted political blitz including a television ad campaign, a new poll finds David Paterson’s approval and favorability ratings inched up this month, but he now trails Andrew Cuomo in a gubernatorial primary by nearly 60 points.

The Siena Poll found that 75 percent of registered Democrats surveyed would prefer Cuomo to Paterson, who garnered the support of just 16 percent. Among African-Americans, Paterson now trails Cuomo by a 2:1 margin. Paterson is losing hypothetical match-ups against Rudy Giuliani and, for the first time, Rick Lazio.

“No other measure of his electability increased noticeably,” Steve Greenberg, a poll spokesman, said. “While it’s true that the Governor’s new commercials had only been airing for less than a week while Siena was polling, it seems clear that he’s going to have to spend a lot of campaign funds very early to even have a chance of improving the measurements by which voters judge David Paterson.”

Andrew Cuomo and Chuck Schumer continue to be incredibly popular, with favorability ratings of 70 and 60 percent, respectively. But Democrats further down the ticket are less popular and known: Kirsten Gillibrand’s favorability rating is 34 percent, with 43 percent of those asked not knowing enough to express an opinion. Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s favorability rating is 20 percent, with 69 percent of voters surveyed not knowing enough to express an opinion.

(By contrast two Republicans who are not in elected office, Rudy Giuliani and George Pataki, are viewed favorably by 62 and 55 percent of voters surveyed.)

David Paterson’s favorability rating is 33 percent; his job approval rating stands at 21 percent, an increase of two points. Siena polled 800 registered voters; the poll has a margin of error of 3.5 percent.

The poll also asked voters who they would support for attorney general if not Cuomo. A list of the Democrats who have expressed at least tacit interest in the position indicates a wide-open race: Tom Suozzi has the support of 11 percent, the highest, trailed by Kathleen Rice with 10 percent. Fifty-eight percent don’t know who they would support.

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Poll: Paterson Job Approval Increases to 21