Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin is within striking distance of Democrat Kathy Hochul in the run for governor, according to a new poll, six points behind New York’s chief executive.
The poll of 1,194 likely voters – conducted by polling firm co/efficient – found that 49% support Hochul, 43% support Zeldin and 8% are undecided.
The right-wing pollster predicted the disgruntled victory of GOP outsider Glenn Youngkin over Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia gubernatorial race last year.
“It’s a competitive race, more so than most people realize. It’s a tough fight for Zeldin, but a winnable race,” said Ryan Muncie, president of the coefficients polling company.
“Voter intensity is definitely right-wing, but whether that’s enough to overcome the Democrats’ registration advantage remains to be seen,” he added.
There is glimmer of hope for Zeldin, the underdog in a state where Democratic candidates enjoy a huge enrollment advantage in statewide races.
Zeldin shared the Hispanic vote with Hochul — usually a reliable New York Democratic constituency — 41% to 41%, with 18% of respondents undecided over concerns about crime and inflation.
He also leads among independents – voters who do not belong to any political party – with 52% versus Hochul’s 38%.
Hochul leads Zeldin in Democratic-dominated New York City, 61% to 28%, 11% undecided.
Zeldin leads Hochul in their upstate territory in the West NY/Buffalo region at 54% to 38% and is up 21 points in the Central NY/Syracuse region.
They split the votes in the battlefield suburbs.
Zeldin and Hochul are dead heat on the Long Island legislature’s lawn — 48% to 47%. They are also 48% to 48% tied in the suburban counties of the Hudson Valley north of New City.
Zeldin said on Sunday he’s gaining momentum.
“With every new Hochul scandal, criminal laws like cashless bail, prosecutors like Alvin Bragg refusing to enforce the law and punishing taxes and the ever-increasing cost of living, New Yorkers are reaching breaking point and getting more and more energy to Fire Kathy Hochul and save our state,” Zeldin said.
He called Hochul “weak” and “unreachable” and said he was the candidate “to save New York”.
The Hochul campaign had no immediate comment.
Muncie said the move of New York’s independent and Hispanic voters to the GOP is in line with a national trend, claiming independents are upset by Biden’s push to cancel college loan debt.
He also called Zeldin’s 28 percent support in the Big Apple a decent achievement, as the GOP believes a statewide candidate must garner at least 30% of the vote in the city while having a solid majority of voters in the rest of the state to win one Opportunity for the governorship.
Muncy said Zeldin must do better at his Long Island base and other suburbs to topple Hochul, the former lieutenant governor who replaced the disgraced ex-gov. Andrew Cuomo after his retirement.
Polls showed a gender disparity: Hochul, the first female governor, led Zeldin 55% to 36% among women, while Zeldin led Hochul 52% to 42% among men.
Zeldin was 8 points ahead among white voters, 51% to 43%. Hochul had a major advantage among black voters, 86% to 13%.
The congressman garnered support from 93% of fellow GOP voters, while Hochul received support from 83% of Democrats.
The Coefficients poll claims a much tighter race than most other public polls run by colleges, showing Hochul by a double-digit lead, although an April poll also predicted a close race.
A poll by Emerson College released last week showed a spread of 15 points, with Hochul ahead of Zeldin by 50% to 35%; A recent poll by the independent Trafalgar Group found Hochul to be just 4 points ahead of Hochul.
The poll of 1,194 likely voters was conducted Sept. 5-7 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points. The voters were surveyed via cellphone SMS and landline.
https://nypost.com/2022/09/11/lee-zeldin-trails-kathy-hochul-by-only-6-points-in-ny-governors-race-poll/ Lee Zeldin Is Just 6 Points Behind Kathy Hochul in the Race for NY Governor: Poll