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FAIRGOERS FAVOR PATAKI, D'AMATO

Visitors to the Erie County Fair chose two Republicans -- Gov. Pataki and Sen. Alfonse M. D'Amato -- as their preferences for re-election, and narrowly opposed moving the Buffalo Zoo.

The annual straw poll by the League of Women Voters of the Greater Buffalo Area also asked fairgoers about the light rail rapid transit system and what kind of Peace Bridge they prefer.

A total of 988 opposed the relocation and upgrading of the zoo, while 940 were in favor. The vote was 1,342 to 546 in favor of the expansion of the light rail rapid transit system, and 1,397 said they would use the system, while 462 said they would not.

Although the Peace Bridge Authority decided last month to build a twin span, fairgoers were asked whether they favor a single-span signature bridge. They said yes, 977 to 864.

On the unofficial ballot for governor, Pataki won with 682 votes. Lt. Gov. Ross, a Democrat, was second with 342, Tom Golisano, Independence Party, 107; Peter F. Vallone, Democrat, 60; Al Lewis, Green Party, 57; James L. Larocca, Democrat, 49, and Charles J. Hynes, Democrat, 31.

In the race for U.S. senator, D'Amato received 449 votes in the straw poll. Geraldine A. Ferraro had 402; Charles E. Schumer, 282; Mark J. Green, 87; and Eric Melendez, 22. All four of the challengers are Democrats.

Laura McDade of the League of Women Voters said 1,975 fair visitors took part in the straw poll during the entire run of the fair. The league also provided voter-registration forms for 250 people at the fair.

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