A Marist College Poll released Tuesday concludes that the majority of New York State voters want Governor David Paterson to finish the remainder of his term and want state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo to remove himself from investigating the governor.
Faced with a fast-approaching April 1 budget deadline and a $9 billion deficit, Paterson has spent much of the last two weeks defending himself against accusations that he tampered with a domestic violence victim to benefit a top aide and lied to state investigators when he said that he had paid for tickets to a World Series Game at Yankee Stadium last fall.
But the poll found 68 percent of registered voters want Paterson to remain in office for the rest of his term, while only 28 percent are calling for his immediate resignation.
Several state legislators have openly stated that Paterson should resign and hand the reigns to Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch.
According to Marist College Institute for Public Opinion Director Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, the poll data doesn’t indicate outright support for the Governor and instead is a sign that the voting public is taking a wait-and-see approach to the abuse of power allegations.
“This is not really a ringing endorsement of Governor Paterson. Instead, the jury is still out on Paterson in the court of public opinion until further information is known,” Miringoff said.
Paterson’s approval ratings have slumped even further, with only 19 percent of respondents stating that he is doing an excellent or good job. Over a third of respondents said the Governor is doing a poor job.
Only a few months ago, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo enjoyed job approval ratings hovering around 70 percent.
But his apparent want for the Governorship and involvement with the state’s investigation of Paterson are apparently driving down the public’s perception of him.
Only 38 percent of respondents believed Cuomo would be fair and impartial in the investigation and 58 percent said that a special prosecutor should be appointed to the case.
In the wake of the investigation, Cuomo’s job approval rating has hit an all-time low with only 54 percent giving the Attorney General an excellent or good grade.
Last month, Marist found that 67 percent of statewide voters gave him favorable marks.
The poll surveyed 529 registered New York voters and has a 4.5 percent margin of error.