(The Center Square) – What’s the status of the New York gubernatorial race? It depends on who is doing the polling.
On Tuesday, the Siena College Research Institute released a poll showing Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul holding an 11-percentage-point lead over Republican U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin, 52-41. However, a Quinnipiac Poll released the same day showed Hochul clinging to a 50-46 lead with just three weeks to go before Election Day.
- Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square contributor
- October 18th, 2022
- Republished with Permission: The Roosevelt Island Daily News
The biggest difference between the two polls is Siena shows Hochul with a far bigger lead in New York City, 70-23, than Quinnipiac does, 59-37.
Both polls show Zeldin doing well outside of the Big Apple.
Hochul’s “5-point lead in the downstate suburbs in September has turned into a four-point lead for Zeldin in October,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said. “Zeldin’s lead upstate is four points, up from one point in September.”
Quinnipiac shows a neck-and-neck race in New York City’s suburbs, with the Long Island congressman holding a 50-49 edge over Hochul, a Buffalo native. In upstate New York, Zeldin leads there by a 52-44 margin.
Quinnipiac Polling Analyst Mary Snow said crime is the top issue for most voters. Across all parties, more than a quarter, 28%, say it’s their top issue, with 20% saying inflation is theirs.
“Zeldin making crime a major part of his campaign could be where he’s making inroads in this race,” said Snow, who added that the Quinnipiac poll shows Zeldin within “striking distance” of Hochul and giving the GOP its best chance at a win in New York in two decades.
Zeldin was in Queens on Tuesday morning, campaigning on public safety issues for riders on the New York City subway and across the state. He noted that women are taking extra steps to protect themselves against attacks and that criminals feel empowered since Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg announced he would not prosecute “fare jumpers.”
“We need to ensure that some of the pro-criminal laws that are getting passed up in Albany are rolled back,” he said. “There is a crime emergency in New York State.”
While Zeldin zeroes in on crime, Hochul’s campaign unveiled two new ads on Tuesday that focus on President Trump’s recent endorsement of Zeldin and his conservative views on gun control and abortion.
“Lee Zeldin is fighting for Donald Trump — not New Yorkers,” Hochul tweeted on her personal Twitter feed Tuesday. “We will reject their dangerous and extreme agenda on November 8.”