At left, Dan Donovan speaks after he was nominated the...

At left, Dan Donovan speaks after he was nominated the Republican candidate for New York State Attorney General at the party's convention in New York. At right, Democratic candidate Eric Schneiderman makes his primary victory speech in New York (June 2, 2010 / Sept. 15, 2010) Credit: Howard Schnapp / Craig Ruttle

ALBANY - Democrat Andrew Cuomo continues to lead Republican Carl Paladino by more than 2-1 in the race for governor, according to a poll released Thursday.

The Siena College Research Institute found Cuomo beats Paladino 57 percent to 24 percent among registered voters. Conservative Party nominee Rick Lazio is backed by 8 percent, while 10 percent are undecided. The poll has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.

Paladino, a millionaire businessman from Buffalo, has gained 10 percentage points since last month's Siena poll.

The results are markedly different from the 6-point gap between Cuomo and Paladino seen in the Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday. That poll surveyed likely voters.

"After his lopsided victory in [last Tuesday's] Republican primary, Paladino is now better known by New York voters - but not necessarily better liked, other than by Republican and conservative voters," said Siena pollster Steven Greenberg.

Cuomo, the state attorney general, was seen as more effective than either Paladino or Lazio in addressing key issues such as job creation, education, property tax relief and overhauling governmental ethics. On reining in property taxes, 38 percent said Cuomo would be the most effective; 29 percent said Paladino; 12 percent Lazio, and 21 percent were undecided.

A spokesman for the Cuomo campaign had no immediate response to the Siena poll. Paladino aide Michael Caputo called it "suspicious" because of Cuomo's big lead. "We'll see a wide variety of public poll results in this race, but we take each with a grain of salt," Caputo said, echoing a Cuomo comment from Wednesday.

In the contest for attorney general, Siena found state Sen. Eric Schneiderman (D-Manhattan) beating Republican Dan Donovan, the Staten Island district attorney, 45 percent to 32 percent, though both are unknown by large numbers of voters. A Quinnipiac poll of likely voters showed Schneiderman and Donovan in a dead heat, 37 percent to 36 percent. Twenty-seven percent were undecided.

There was less discrepancy between the Siena and Quinnipiac results for state comptroller. Both found incumbent Thomas DiNapoli, a Democrat from Great Neck, with a substantial lead over Republican Harry Wilson, with about 25 percent undecided.

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