WXXI AM News

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

Apr 27, 2020

A new poll from Siena College finds Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s 77% approval rating is at a record high, and that New Yorkers by a 3-to-1 margin trust Cuomo over President Donald Trump to get them through the pandemic.

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

Trump, who has never been popular in his 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," Greenberg said. "Only 16% of voters, and only 36% of Republicans, trust Trump, compared to 78 percent of all voters, and 56% of Republicans, who trust Cuomo. Even self-identified conservatives trust Cuomo more, 57-34%.”

The poll also found half of New Yorkers know someone who has had the virus, and a third know someone who died from the disease. Half of all households have someone working from home, and a 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’s 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; 64% believe it’s 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, adding that 69% of respondents said it was unlikely they would go.

New Yorkers also agree, by a 69% to 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.