Amazon’s decision to pull the plug on a planned expansion in Long Island City was bad for New York, with many pointing the finger at Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, according to a majority of voters polled by Siena College.
The poll released Monday morning found voters across the state, 67 percent to 21 percent, believe the cancelled deal was a bad development for the state. Most voters, 61 percent to 30 percent, back the project, which would have linked $3 billion in tax credits to up to 25,000 jobs.
A plurality of voters, 38 percent, put the blame on the scuttled deal on Ocasio-Cortez, the freshman Bronx Democrat who was among the proposal’s vocal opponents.
Fallout from the cancelled project has reverberated in state government over the last month, with Gov. Andrew Cuomo blaming Democrats in the state Senate for opposing the plan and nominating a critic of it, Sen. Mike Gianaris, to a board that had vetoed power over the tax incentives.
Cuomo has blamed the opposition from the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, which had sought to unionize workers at Amazon’s Whole Foods grocery stores.
While the deal’s demise was seen as a boost for progressive grassroots advocacy groups, 56 percent of liberal voters polled said the episode was bad for the state as well as 69 percent of union households, 64 percent of New York City voters, and 63 percent of Democratic voters.
Cuomo has publicly appealed to the company to reconsider its decision, but it’s unlikely at this point Amazon will do so, he’s said. The governor has also raised concerns the episode is attributing to the perception New York is a poor place to do business.
The poll also found 67 percent of voters, including 53 percent of Democratic voters, believe it is “getting harder” to do business in New York.
The poll comes in the middle of an increasingly fraught budget season in Albany, with Cuomo and Democratic state lawmakers feuding over spending in the negotiations.
The poll found broad support for Cuomo’s push to make the state’s cap on property taxes a permanent measure, 59 percent to 25 percent.
More than half of voters polled, 53 percent, back ending cash bail for those who face misdemeanor or non-violent felony charges.
Fifty-three percent of voters also back the legalization of marijuana in New York while 43 percent do not.
Cuomo has said both the cash bail and tax cap provision must be included in a final budget agreement, but has become increasingly skeptical an agreement on marijuana legalization can be reached by the March 31 deadline.
Sixty-one percent of voters oppose and 34 percent support extending access to driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants. The issue has split Democrats, with 49 percent supporting it and 45 percent opposing the measure.
At the same time, the vast majority of voters — 79 percent to 18 percent — want parents to be required to vaccinate their children against diseases like measles regardless of their parents’ religious beliefs.
Most voters, 51 percent to 28 percent, believe the concerns of upstate New York are being ignored by state officials. That includes 73 percent of upstate voters.
Cuomo’s favorability rating remains under water at 46 percent to 48 percent, but is a slight improvement from a 43 percent to 50 percent split in February.
The poll of 700 registered voters in New York was conducted from March 10 through March 14. It has a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.