Over one-third of New York voters say Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has “committed sexual harassment,” a Siena Research Institute survey released Monday found.
While Cuomo has implored New Yorkers to wait to form their opinion until the conclusion of the attorney general’s investigation into the mounting allegations of sexual harassment and assault, the survey found 35 percent have already decided Cuomo committed sexual harassment. Less than one quarter say Cuomo has not committed sexual harassment, and a plurality, or 41 percent, remain unsure.
Nonetheless, 50 percent said Cuomo should not immediately resign, compared to 35 percent who indicated otherwise. Forty-eight percent said the Democrat can “continue to effectively do his job as governor,” per the survey.
“Nearly two-thirds of Republicans say Cuomo should resign, however, 61 percent of Democrats and 46 percent of independents, a plurality, say he should not,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg observed.
“A strong majority of Democrats and a plurality of independents say he can govern effectively, while two-thirds of Republicans disagree. Voters outside of New York City are closely divided, however, a strong majority of New York City voters say he can effectively do his job,” he added.
Fifty-seven percent of voters, Greenberg said, indicated that they are “satisfied” with the way Cuomo has addressed the scandal, apologizing for unknowingly making people uncomfortable and agreeing to cooperate with an independent investigation.
“Two-thirds of Democrats are satisfied, as are 56 percent of independents; 57 percent of Republicans are not satisfied with the way Cuomo has addressed the allegations. Fifty-four percent of men and 59 percent of women say they are satisfied,” Greenberg continued.
Overall, the survey showed Cuomo’s favorability rating sinking from 56-39 in February to 43-45 percent this month:
“Cuomo’s standing with voters has clearly fallen in the last month. His favorability rating and his re-elect number are both down net 19 points, while his job performance rating is down net 10 points,” Greenberg said. “Cuomo’s drop in all three ratings is largely the result of Democrats. Among Democrats alone, his favorability rating dropped net 31 points and his re-elect dropped net 33 points. In fact, only 46 percent of Democrats now want to re-elect Cuomo, compared to 40 percent who want someone else, down from 65-26 percent last month.
“Voters appear to be able to compartmentalize how they feel about Cuomo. While their views on him generally – favorability, job performance, re-elect – took a significant hit this month, voters’ views on Cuomo’s handling of the pandemic remain largely positive, except for his handling of nursing home death data,” Greenberg said. “Two-thirds of New Yorkers, including 56 percent of Democrats, give him a negative grade for making public all data about COVID-related deaths of nursing home patients.”
The survey, taken March 8-12, 2021, among 805 New York State registered voters, has a margin of error of +/- 4.1 percent.
Cuomo is ignoring calls from fellow Democrats to step down from his post. President Biden on Sunday declined to join the bulk of New York State lawmakers, telling a reporter, “I think the investigation is underway and we should see what it brings us.”