By Tom Precious
ALBANY – After Gov. Andrew Cuomo spent the summer of traveling the state, his rating has fallen to its lowest level since taking office, a new poll out this morning has found.
The governor’s job approval level has slipped under the 50 percent mark, with 49 percent giving him a positive performance rating and 50 percent saying his job in office is only fair or poor, the Siena College Research Institute poll reports.
His 49 percent job performance approval rating in September compares to a high of 64 percent last year.
With a year to his re-election date with voters, 52 percent said they would vote for Cuomo again for governor if the election were held today, with 39 percent preferring “someone else.’’
Upstate, where the governor has held practically non-stop public events all summer, 40 percent of registered voters say they would re-elect Cuomo compared to 52 percent who want someone else as governor and 9 percent who either don’t have an opinion or didn’t answer the question.
The governor’s strongest showing among New Yorkers can be found in Democrat-rich New York City, where 62 percent would re-elect Cuomo compared to 26 percent preferring someone else. In the downstate suburbs, 54 percent said they would vote for Cuomo and 37 percent want another person in the job.
Just 10 months ago, in a poll with a Siena College press release headline that read "Voters Love Cuomo,'' Cuomo's statewide job performance had a favorable to unfavorable rating of 60 percent to 38 percent and upstate his numbers late last November were at 52 percent favorable to 47 percent unfavorable.
At least 60 percent of Republicans, independents and upstate residents give him a fair or poor job performance rating in the latest poll.
Cuomo’s statewide favorability rating – do people have an overall favorable view or not of him – stands at 64 percent in the new poll, which has a margin of error of 3.4 percent. Thirty-two percent of people view him unfavorably.
Significantly, the largest percentage of registered voters believes New York is heading in the wrong direction for the first time since November 2011, according to Siena pollster Steve Greenberg. Forty-six percent say the state is heading in the wrong direction compared to 43 percent who say it is on the right track. Sixty-two percent of upstate registered voters say the state is going in the wrong direction.
Statewide, 77 percent describe the state’s economy as poor or fair, compared to 20 percent who call it good and 1 percent who characterize it as excellent.