Cuomo leads Nixon 2-to-1 in first poll of likely NY Dem primary voters

Cuomo leads Nixon 2-to-1 in first poll of likely NY Dem primary voters
© Greg Nash

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is leading Cynthia Nixon, his challenger from the left,2-to-1, according to the first poll of likely Democratic primary voters. 

The Siena College poll finds Cuomo holding a 60 percent to 29 percent lead over Nixon, a longtime activist and former star of the hit TV show "Sex and the City." 

"Andrew Cuomo, viewed favorably by two-thirds of Democratic voters, has a commanding 31-point lead over Cynthia Nixon, who’s viewed favorably by a plurality of Democrats, with one-quarter not knowing enough about her to have an opinion,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said in a press release." 

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Cuomo leads Nixon among all racial, age, and gender categories, with voters 55 and older supporting Cuomo by the highest margin, according to the poll.

More than 60 percent of Nixon voters told pollsters their vote will be against Cuomo rather than for her. 

"Nixon has the anti-Cuomo Democrats, but she’ll need to expand on that to make this race competitive," Greenberg said.

However, even Cuomo voters said Nixon would likely be better on the issues of "corruption," "progressive politics" and "public education." 

Nixon has aligned herself with progressive New York insurgents challenging incumbents they accuse of being overly mired in the Democratic party's establishment. She described herself as a "democratic socialist" this month and received an endorsement from the New York City chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). 

Her platform involves abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and promoting single-payer healthcare. 

She has sought to draw parallels between herself and 28-year-old democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the House candidate who won her district's primary in an upset win over incumbent Rep. Joe CrowleyJoseph (Joe) CrowleyDemocrats embracing socialism is dangerous for America Pressley seeks Ocasio-Cortez-styled win in Boston Republicans and Democrats alike face troubling signals from voters MORE (N.Y.), the fourth-ranking House Democrat. 

Cuomo has largely ignored Nixon during his campaign, instead hitting President Trump in ads. 

Nixon's campaign has responded to previous polls that found Cuomo expanding his lead by saying her campaign will draw constituents who do not typically vote, and therefore will not show up in polling.

"Joe Crowley's poll had him up by 35 points," Nixon spokeswoman Lauren Hitt said in response to a Quinnipac Poll. "He lost by 15."   

This Siena College poll was conducted July 22-26 and surveyed 630 likely New York state Democratic primary voters. It has a margin of error of 3.9 percent.