Monday, March 28, 2011

New Yorkers on an On-Time Budget and the Players

With the budget deadline looming two-thirds of voters polled by the Siena Research Institute say they would prefer an on-time budget or budget extenders than a budget shutdown.
“Voters think an on-time budget is important by a nine-to-one margin," added Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg. “If the budget deadline passes and the Governor sends the Legislature an emergency appropriation bill that not only keeps government running but also includes his entire proposed budget, voters strongly urge the Legislature to pass that budget and not let state government shut down."
This sign of strong support for the governor's agenda comes at a time while he is still extremely popular, even though his favorable ratings have dropped since the last Siena poll in February. Cuomo has a postive rating from 69 percent of voters polled and has negative rating of only 20 percent. These numbers represent a 8 percentage point drop in favortability and a three percentage point increase in his negative perception. At the same time his job performance review has dropped six points to 51 percent of New Yorkers feeling he is doing an excellent or good job.“While Cuomo has fallen below 70 percent, more than two-thirds of voters still view him favorably, including two-thirds of Republicans and more than half of conservatives,” said Greenberg.
The view of the governor is in sharp contrast to the Senate's negative rating, which is at 60 percent, and the Assembly's negative rating, which is at 56 percent. Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, R-Rockville Centre, recently addressed the unfavorable perception of the legislature by nothing that each member is popular in their district. These ratings most likely have to do with the budget process, as a majority of voters view the legislature's performance as fair or poor.
“Who do voters most trust to do the right thing for New York in crafting a responsible state budget? It’s not even close, with 72 percent saying they trust Cuomo, and Skelos and Silver both getting single digits,” Greenberg said. “In fact both legislative leaders have less support than ‘none of the above.’
One possible explanation for Cuomo's popularity could be due to the fact that he is viewed as a moderate by 60 percent of voters. It's because of this perception that the governor is in the middle of the road New Yorkers are twice as likely to blame the Senate or the Assembly for a late budget compared to Cuomo.

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