NY governor's race: Kathy Hochul in Long Island Thursday where polls show Lee Zeldin has closed gap

ByEyewitness News via WABC logo
Thursday, October 20, 2022
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Incumbent New York Gov. Kathy Hochul's lead over Republican challenger Rep. Lee Zeldin is down to just four points, the latest Quinnipiac poll shows. Jim Dolan has more and the role crime is playing in the race.

ALBANY (WABC) -- Kathy Hochul was in Long Island Thursday where she'll likely appear often over the next three weeks as recent polls show Republican Congressman Lee Zeldin has closed the gap there in the New York governor's race.

The Democrat and incumbent appeared at events in Melville and Brentwood for announcements about the resurfacing of the Long Island Expressway and a new training center for jobs in the wind power industry.

Polls show the race that many assumed Hochul would win easily since Democrats outnumber 2.2 to 1 in New York, has tightened in recent weeks.

According to the statistical analysis website FiveThirtyEight, Hochul's lead, which was 12-points back in April, is down to just under a 10% margin.

Meanwhile, Quinnipiac's latest poll released Tuesday showed Hochul held just a four point lead.

"In the blue state of New York, the race for governor is competitive. Democrats have cruised to victory in gubernatorial races since 2006, but Governor Hochul's narrow edge puts Republican Lee Zeldin well within striking distance of her," said Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Mary Snow.

Earlier Tuesday, Siena College's poll also showed the race tightening, with Hochul's lead at 11 points, down from 17 points three weeks ago.

"Over the last three weeks, Zeldin has narrowed the deficit he must overcome from 17 points to 11 points in trying to become the first Republican in 20 years to win statewide," Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said.

Meanwhile, for the second consecutive day, Zeldin stood in front of a subway station where a person was attacked where he outlined his plan to fight crime should he become governor.

"One step is declaring a crime emergency in New York and then with that authority, suspending cashless bail and some other laws," Zeldin said.

Zeldin is not just searching for stray votes in New York City, where Hochul maintains a commanding lead, according to both polls.

He is also attempting to appeal to voters in the downstate suburbs, where both the Quinnipiac and Siena polls found that he had made inroads.

Hochul was also in New York City to announce the signing of legislation to protect and support survivors of domestic violence.

At the event, the Democrat came out swinging, attacking her opponent's support of gun rights and ties to former President Donald Trump.

"He has no credibility talking about this," Hochul said. "He supports the supreme court taking away my ability to protect citizens, that has been the law for 108 years about concealed carry. He wants to make our subways safer by making sure that everybody sitting on the subway has a loaded weapon these days. I don't think so."

Referring to former President Trump's endorsement of him, Hochul even questioned whether Zeldin would accept the gubernatorial election results, if she wins.

"Not only did he vote to overturn the presidential election, he was one of the early co-conspirators sending text messages, trying to give a strategy to the White House, the Chief of Staff to the White House, on how to subvert the will of the people. He may be doing that right now, here in the state of New York. I don't know that he's not already planning to find a way to question, when I win the election, question the integrity of the election. This person cannot be trusted," Hochul said.

ALSO READ | Man stabbed, suspect pepper-sprayed in subway dispute on Upper West Side

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