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Cuomo receives record high approval rating for handling of COVID-19

Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

A new poll from Siena Collegefinds Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s approval ratings are at a record high of 77% and that New Yorkers, by a three-to-one margin, trust Cuomo over President Trump to get them through the pandemic.


Siena’s Steve Greenberg said Cuomo has not enjoyed this high an approval rating since his earliest days in office. His job performance numbers, at 71%, are the highest he has ever had, and a dramatic turnaround from just 36% of New Yorkers thinking the governor was doing a good job in office just two months ago.   

Trump, who has never been popular in the president’s home state, has seen his ratings further decline and Greenberg said even Republicans and Conservatives trust the governor more than the president to get them through the crisis, at 78% to 16%.

“When it comes to whom New Yorkers trust more to make decisions about reopening the state and its economy, the president or the governor, it’s not even close. Only 16% of voters, and only 36% of Republicans, trust Trump, compared to 78% of all voters and 56% of Republicans who trust Cuomo. Even self-identified Conservatives trust Cuomo more, 57% to 34%,” Greenberg said.

The poll also found half of New Yorkers know someone who has had the virus and one-third know someone who died from the disease. Half of all households have someone working from home and one-third have a household member who has lost their job.

Greenberg said there is overwhelming support, 81%, for Cuomo’s stay-at-home and business and school shutdown orders and even more agreement, 86%, on the requirement to wear masks in public. He said it is the highest level of support for any issue that Siena has asked about in its polling history.

Greenberg said no one, though, is optimistic about life getting back to normal anytime soon. Sixty-four percent believe it is unlikely that there will be large gatherings like concerts, sporting events, or graduation parties this summer.

“Then we followed up and we said, if such events were to happen, would you attend?,” said Greenberg. Sixty-nine percent said it was unlikely they would go.

New Yorkers also agree, by a 69-26 margin, that any widespread reopening will depend on whether there is enough testing to see who has the coronavirus, and who may have had it and recovered from it.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. WBFO listeners are accustomed to hearing DeWitt’s insightful coverage throughout the day, including expanded reports on Morning Edition.