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Hochul’s lead over Zeldin narrows in New York governor’s race: poll

Gov. Kathy Hochul’s (D) lead over Republican Lee Zeldin is narrowing in the New York gubernatorial race with less than two weeks to go from the November midterms, according to a new Emerson College Polling-Pix11-The Hill survey.

The poll released on Friday found that the governor received 50 percent of support among very likely voters in the state, compared to Zeldin with 44 percent. A separate 4 percent said they were undecided.

The survey was conducted before the debate between Hochul and Zeldin held on Tuesday.

Among those who said they were undecided and were asked which candidate they were leaning toward, 51 percent said someone else, 33 percent said Hochul and 16 percent said Zeldin.

Hochul’s lead has decreased since September when the same poll was conducted. While Hochul still maintained 50 percent support, Zeldin had only notched 35 percent last month. 

Aiding Republicans is the fact that some of their preferred midterm issues are top of mind among voters. When respondents were asked which issue was the most important in determining their vote in November, economy ranked first at 33 percent, followed by threats to democracy at 15 percent and crime at 13 percent.

“In September, Hochul was winning independent voters 47% to 35%. Over a month later, a 52% majority of independent voters now support Zeldin, and 41% support Hochul. Independent men break toward Zeldin 58% to 37%, and independent women are split: 46% support Zeldin and 45% Hochul,” said Spencer Kimball, executive director of Emerson College Polling.

While New York is seen as a reliably blue state, Hochul’s diminished lead is worrying Democrats who did not suspect they would have to play defense at the gubernatorial level and in certain House seats in the state, such as the 17th Congressional District where Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) is running.

Still, the nonpartisan Cook Political Report sees the gubernatorial race favoring Hochul, rating the seat as “solid Democrat.”

The Emerson College Polling-Pix11-The Hill survey polled 1,000 very likely voters between Oct. 20 and Oct. 24. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.02 percentage points.

Tags 2022 midterm elections kathy hochul Kathy Hochul Kathy Hochul Lee Zeldin Lee Zeldin midterms 2022 New York New York governor's race Sean Patrick Maloney
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