Clinton & Trump Continue to Hold Commanding Leads in New York in Their Respective Party Primaries

NY state building

Clinton & Trump Continue to Hold Commanding Leads in New York in Their Respective Party Primaries
Among Republicans, Kasich Runs Strongest in Matchups Against Hillary or Bernie; In Three-Way General Election Contests, Clinton & Sanders Have Double Digit Leads; Bloomberg Runs as Well as Trump
Two-Thirds of New Yorkers Say Senate Should Act on Obama Supreme Court Nominee; Majority Support Keeping Gitmo Open

Loudonville, NY. With his support growing to almost half of New York Republicans, Donald Trump has stretched his lead in a New York Republican primary to 27 points over John Kasich and Marco Rubio, who are tied for second. On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton maintains her 21-point lead over Bernie Sanders, 55-34 percent, exactly the same as it was last month, according to a new Siena College poll of New York State registered voters released today.

Sanders leads the four Republicans in Democrat vs. Republican general election match-ups by between 19 and 37 points, while Clinton leads those same Republicans by seven to 25 points. If Michael Bloomberg runs as in independent, he gets about one-quarter of the vote, while Sanders has a 14-point lead and Clinton leads by 16 points.

“Trump, viewed favorably by 54 percent of Republicans and unfavorably by 67 percent of all New York voters, has widened his primary lead to a commanding 27 points over Kasich and Rubio, and 34 points over Ted Cruz,” said Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg. “Trump leads by 20 points over Cruz in New York City, 20 points over Kasich upstate, and 26 points over Rubio in the downstate suburbs. He has commanding leads with Republican men and women, as well as Catholics and Protestants.”

“While Kasich has the best favorability rating among Republicans and gained the most ground in the primary, he is still far behind Trump, and even further behind among self-identified conservatives, 52 percent of whom support Trump, with 20 percent supporting Rubio and 12 percent Kasich,” Greenberg said.

“Hillary’s lead over Bernie among Democrats is unchanged since last month. She has the support of 55 percent of Democrats in every region of the state, leading him by 21 points in New York City, 24 points in the downstate suburbs and 19 points upstate. She leads by 10 points with men and 28 points with women. While Sanders has a 17-point lead with Democrats under 35, Clinton leads by 39 points with those 55 and older,” Greenberg said.

“Although Sanders has a net 13-point positive favorability rating and Clinton’s is breakeven at 48-48 percent, both have seen little change over the last month and Clinton continues to have a better favorability rating with Democrats,” Greenberg said. “Among Republicans, Kasich and Trump are viewed favorably, while Rubio and Cruz are under water. Kasich is the only one viewed favorably by all New York voters, 41-29 percent. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, with a 51-35 percent favorability rating, is the only potential candidate viewed favorably by Democrats, Republicans and independents.”

Dems Still Lead All Reps; Kasich Closest; In Three-Way Race, Bloomberg Challenge Trump for 2nd Place

“Clinton leads Trump 57-34 percent, almost identical to Sanders’ 57-33 percent lead over Trump,” Greenberg said. “However, while Sanders leads Rubio by 26 points, Clinton leads him by 21 points. Sanders leads Cruz by 37 points compared to Clinton’s 25-point lead.

“Kasich has made the most headway in general election match-ups against the Democrats. Sanders leads Kasich by 19 points, down from 30 points last month, and he comes within seven points of Clinton, 49-42 percent, down from 26 points in February,” Greenberg said.

“If Bloomberg enters the race as an independent, he carries independent voters in a three-way race involving Trump and either Sanders or Clinton,” Greenberg said. “And while Trump continues to get a majority of Republicans and Clinton or Sanders wins an even bigger majority of Democrats, Bloomberg picks up enough support to eke out a second place finish over Trump against Sanders and tie for second with Trump against Clinton.”

New Yorkers Think U.S. Senate Should Act on Obama Supreme Court Nomination

“By an overwhelming 67-28 percent margin, voters think that the Senate should act on a Supreme Court nomination by President Obama, if he makes one. That view is held by more than three-quarters of Democrats and almost two-thirds of independents,” Greenberg said. “While Republicans and conservatives are closely divided on whether the Senate should or should not act on an Obama Supreme Court nominee, there is no question that the vast majority of other New Yorkers believe the Senate should act on the President’s nomination.”

Majority Want Gitmo Kept Open, Despite Obama’s Plan to Close It

“Overall, New Yorkers support keeping the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba open 53-38 percent,” Greenberg said. “Democrats are closely divided, with a slight plurality agreeing with the President that it should be closed. However, a majority of independents and nearly three-quarters of Republicans disagree with Obama and want Gitmo kept open as a place to keep terrorists. Men favor keeping it open by a narrow four-point margin while women support it staying open by 24 points.”

Half of New Yorkers Believe Apple Should Develop Way to Unlock Phone Belonging to Terrorist

“New Yorkers are closely divided, with 50 percent saying the government is right that Apple should develop a means to unlock the phone of a terrorist in the recent San Bernardino terrorist attack, while 42 percent say that Apple shouldn’t find a way to unlock the phone because of the precedent it would create,” Greenberg said. “Democrats are closely divided on the question, with 53 percent of Republicans and 58 percent of independents wanting Apple to find a way to unlock the phone. A majority of younger voters oppose Apple unlocking the phone, while a plurality of older voters supports it.”

Majority Continue to View Obama Favorably and Say Country Is Headed in Wrong Direction

“Obama’s favorability rating, 59-36 percent, is virtually unchanged from 59-38 percent last month. He continues to be viewed favorably by more than three-quarters of Democrats and a majority of independents, while nearly three-quarters of Republicans view him unfavorably,” Greenberg said.

“With 52 percent of voters thinking the country is headed in the wrong direction and 35 percent saying America is on the right track, there’s been no movement since February,” Greenberg said. “Democrats are closely divided, independents are negative and Republicans are strongly negative about the country’s direction.”

This Siena College Poll was conducted February 28-March 3, 2016 by telephone calls conducted in English to 800 New York State registered voters, including 368 Democrats and 229 Republicans. Respondent sampling was initiated by asking for the youngest male in the household. It has an overall margin of error of +/- 4.1 percentage points including the design effects resulting from weighting. The margin of error is +/- 6.2 percentage points for Democrats and +/- 6.7 percentage points for Republicans. Sampling was conducted via a stratified dual frame probability sample of both landline and cell phone telephone numbers (from Survey Sampling International) from within New York State weighted to reflect known population patterns. Data was statistically adjusted by age, party, region and gender to ensure representativeness. The Siena College Research Institute, directed by Donald Levy, Ph.D., conducts political, economic, social and cultural research primarily in NYS. SRI, an independent, non-partisan research institute, subscribes to the American Association of Public Opinion Research Code of Professional Ethics and Practices. For more information, call Steve Greenberg at (518) 469-9858. For survey cross-tabs: