Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks to reporters about legislation passed during...

Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks to reporters about legislation passed during a special legislative session, in the Red Room at the state Capitol, July 1, in Albany. Credit: AP/Hans Pennink

Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul leads Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin by 10 percentage points in the race for New York governor, according to a new poll by Marist College.

Hochul garnered support from 51% of registered voters surveyed, compared with 41% for Zeldin.

Marist said when the field is narrowed to those who said they are “definitely voting” in November, Hochul’s lead shrinks 2 points, giving her a 52-44 advantage.

Only a small number of those surveyed told Marist they might change their minds and vote differently: 4% of Hochul supporters, 3% of Zeldin’s. Marist pollster Lee Miringoff said that’s a low percentage compared to October surveys of previous gubernatorial elections in New York.

Marist surveyed 1,117 registered voters from Oct. 3-6. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

In another high-profile contest, Marist said U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, a Democrat, leads Republican Joe Pinion, 54% to 34% among registered voters; 52-39 among those who told Marist they are definitely voting.

Breaking down its poll on the governor’s race, Marist said Hochul holds a 65-23 lead in New York City. Zeldin leads 50-47 in the metropolitan suburbs and 49-43 upstate.

Rep. Lee Zeldin speaks to delegates and assembled party officials...

Rep. Lee Zeldin speaks to delegates and assembled party officials at the 2022 NYGOP Convention on March 1 in Garden City. Credit: AP/John Minchillo

Hochul leads 58-31 among women. Zeldin leads 50-44 among men.

Among college graduates, Hochul leads 59-34. Zeldin leads by 1 among those without a college degree.

Miringoff noted that a significant portion of voters — 27% of all registered and 20% of those who said they’d definitely vote — don’t know Zeldin with less than a month before Election Day.

“It gives him an opportunity to be become better known — for good or for bad,” Miringoff said.

Also, he noted 74% of Zeldin voters said they are firmly committed to him, compared to 62% for Hochul, which the pollster called an “enthusiasm gap” Democrats should be concerned about.

Marist said Hochul isn’t as popular as other incumbent governors in other states, perhaps because she’s been on the job just one year since Andrew M. Cuomo’s resignation. But it did note more voters view her favorably than unfavorably (49-46), which was better than Cuomo’s standing (45-49) in October 2018, right before he won reelection.

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