The first month of the 2019 session has been an unusually productive one as the Democratic-led Legislature has approved measures strengthening legal protections for LGBT people, new gun control measures, laws that are meant to make it easier to vote and a bill strengthening abortion rights.
All have been cheered on by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
However, a Siena College poll released Monday morning found the governor’s favorability rating has dropped sharply:
Last month — 51 percent favorable, 43 percent unfavorable.
This month — 43 percent favorable, 50 percent unfavorable.
His job performance rating also fell, down to 35 percent to 64 percent, a decline from a 43 percent to 56 percent margin last month.
Taken together, the numbers are the lowest favorability rating and job performance for Cuomo since he’s been in office.
Cuomo is not alone: Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s favorability rating also fell from 53 percent to 47 percent, the poll found.
And, even with the front-loaded successes for the new Democratic Legislature, the Senate and Assembly both have a 43 percent favorability rating as well.
The governor’s biggest drop was with New York City and suburban voters — two regions that make up a significant portion of his base.
Cuomo’s office disputed the accuracy of the poll.
“Siena doesn’t always get it right and, color us skeptical, but for the governor, Senator Schumer, Senator Gillibrand, the state Senate and the state Assembly to all have similar across the board slides leads us to believe this poll is an outlier and — much like the Siena poll three days before the November election — doesn’t reflect the sentiment of New Yorkers,” said Cuomo senior advisor Rich Azzopardi. “We’ve had the most productive month in history that finally saw the passage of popular, long stalled legislation and we’re going to continue to move New York forward.”
Nevertheless, the poll found broad support for the measures lawmakers have approved in the last month. Sixty-nine percent believe the Child Victims Act, which makes it easer for the survivors of childhood sexual abuse to file lawsuits, will be good for the state, while 61 percent back a measure adding new legal protections for transgender people.
Fifty-five percent believe new gun control laws approved will be good for New York.
Forty-seven percent said the Reproductive Health Act, a bill strengthening abortion rights in the state, is good for New York, with 32 percent disagreeing.
The RHA has drawn national attention, with President Donald Trump calling for a ban on third trimester abortions in his State of the Union address and those who oppose abortion hoping for a nationwide mobilizing on the issue in the 2020 election.
Trump’s favorability rating among New York voters is at 35 percent to 59 percent, up from a 32 percent to 64 percent margin in January.
New Yorkers are split on whether the state is on the right track, with 44 percent saying it is, 45 percent saying it is going in the wrong direction.
The poll of 778 registered voters was conducted from Feb. 4 through Feb. 7. It has a margin of error of 4.3 percentage points.
More in the cross tabs here.