August 11, 2011 - New York Voters Back Fracking, Despite Concerns, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; More Women In Government Means Fewer Sex Scandals

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By a 47 - 42 percent margin, New York State voters like the economic benefits of drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale more than they fear possible environmental concerns, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Support for drilling is 51 - 39 percent among upstate voters and 52 - 35 percent among suburban voters. New York City voters are opposed 50 - 38 percent. Support is 67 - 20 percent among Republicans, while independent voters are divided 47 - 45 percent. Democrats are opposed 52 - 35 percent.

New York State voters believe 75 - 17 percent that natural gas drilling will create jobs, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds, with strong support among all groups and in all regions of the state.

While many voters know little about hydro-fracking, voters believe 52 - 15 percent that this process will damage the environment, with 33 percent undecided. All groups feel this way.

"Drill for the jobs, New Yorkers say, even though they're worried about the environmental effects of hydro-fracking," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "And while we're drilling for natural gas, let's tax those drilling companies, voters say 59 - 29 percent. Even Republicans support this tax.

"There's no natural gas in New York City, where voters are opposed to the drilling."

There should be more women in high political office, 56 percent of New York State voters say, while 29 percent say there are enough women now. There obviously is a large gender gap as women voters say 65 - 22 percent that more sisters are needed, while men feel that way 46 - 36 percent.

There is almost no gender gap as 78 percent of all voters say women officials are less likely than men to be involved in sex scandals, while 18 percent say there is not much difference.

Women officials are more likely than men to have the right priorities, voters say 22 - 5 percent, but 69 percent say there is not much difference. Women are better problem solvers, voters say 32 - 6, but 59 percent say not much difference.

"Let's have more women in political office, New Yorkers say," Carroll said. "Men and women would be pretty much the same in making the right political decisions, voters think.

"But they look at the headlines and say - overwhelmingly - that women in politics would be far less likely than male politicians to get involved in sex scandals."

District lines from which members of the U.S. Congress and the State Legislature are elected should be created by an independent commission, 50 percent of voters say, while 13 percent say the State Legislature should continue to draw the lines and 26 percent want an independent commission with some input from the State Legislature.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo should veto any legislative redistricting plan that is not created by an independent commission, voters say 49 - 30 percent. Voters in all political groups agree.

"Remember all those candidate pledges that former Mayor Ed Koch won about a non- partisan commission to draw legislative and congressional district lines? Most New Yorkers endorse the idea," Carroll said. "If the lines aren't drawn by an independent commission - an entity, it should be noted, that doesn't happen to exist - voters say Cuomo should erase them."

Also on redistricting, voters say 60 - 25 percent that prison inmates should be counted as residents of their home districts, not of where they're imprisoned. Republican and upstate voters support counting inmates in their homes, not their prisons.

From August 3 - 8, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,640 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.4 percentage points. Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia and the nation as a public service and for research. For more data or RSS feed- http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling.xml, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter.

22. Do you support or oppose New York State's new law that allows same-sex couples to get married?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              54%    38%    66%    53%    48%    60%
Oppose               38     54     27     38     43     32
DK/NA                 8      8      7      9      9      8
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Support              50%    55%    61%    53%
Oppose               43     36     31     39
DK/NA                 8      8      8      8
 
 
23. Some people say there should be drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale because of the economic benefits. Others say there should not be drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale because of the environmental impact. Which comes closer to your point of view?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Drilling             47%    67%    35%    47%    56%    38%
No drilling          42     20     52     45     34     48
DK/NA                12     13     13      8     10     14
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Drilling             51%    38%    52%    48%
No drilling          39     50     35     41
DK/NA                10     12     14     11
 
 
24. Do you support or oppose a new tax on companies drilling for natural gas in the state's Marcellus Shale?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              59%    46%    68%    60%    58%    60%
Oppose               29     41     19     31     34     24
DK/NA                12     13     13      9      8     15
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Support              57%    65%    55%    67%
Oppose               29     25     35     25
DK/NA                14     11     10      8
 
 
25. Do you think that drilling for natural gas in the state's Marcellus Shale will create jobs or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Yes                  75%    82%    71%    76%    80%    71%
No                   17     12     19     17     15     19
DK/NA                 8      6     10      7      5     10
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Yes                  76%    72%    79%    73%
No                   16     20     13     21
DK/NA                 8      8      7      6
 
 
26. Have you heard or read anything about hydro-fracking?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Yes                  57%    59%    48%    65%    65%    49%
No                   42     40     51     34     34     49
DK/NA                 1      1      1      1      1      1
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Yes                  75%    42%    49%    63%
No                   24     57     49     37
DK/NA                 1      1      2      -
 
 
27. Natural gas drilling companies want to practice hydro-fracking in New York State. Hydro-fracking is the process of pumping water and chemicals into the ground under high pressure to fracture rocks. This releases natural gas trapped in the rocks which is then collected. Do you think hydro-fracking will cause environmental damage or not, or don't you know?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Yes/Will damage      52%    42%    61%    49%    45%    58%
No/Won't Damage      15     23      7     17     23      8
Don't Know           33     35     31     34     31     35
REFUSED               -      1      -      -      1      -
 
                                          Union         Yes
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds        Q26
 
Yes/Will damage      51%    54%    49%    55%           60%
No/Won't Damage      19      9     16     19            20
Don't Know           29     36     34     26            20
REFUSED               1      -      -      -             -
 
 
28. Who do you think should draw the district lines by which members of the state legislature and Congress are elected - the state legislature or a commission that has no connection to the state legislature or an independent commission with some legislative input?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
State legislature    13%     9%    16%    11%    12%    13%
Commissn/No connect  50     56     45     55     52     49
Commissn/legis input 26     27     28     26     27     26
DK/NA                11      9     11      9      9     13
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
State legislature     9%    18%     9%    13%
Commissn/No connect  56     40     59     59
Commissn/legis input 25     30     23     21
DK/NA                10     13      9      7
 
TREND: Who do you think should draw the district lines by which members of the state legislature and Congress are elected: the state legislature, a commission that has no connection to the state legislature, or an independent commission with some legislative input?
                     Aug 11  Jun 28  Jun 02  Apr 14
                     2011    2011    2011    2011
 
State legislature    13      14      13      12
Commissn/No connect  50      42      46      51
Commissn/legis input 26      34      31      29
DK/NA                11      10      10       7
 
 
29. Do you think Governor Cuomo should veto a redistricting plan that is not created by an independent commission or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Yes                  49%    44%    50%    56%    55%    44%
No                   30     33     26     31     30     30
DK/NA                21     23     24     13     15     26
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Yes                  48%    49%    53%    55%
No                   31     30     28     29
DK/NA                21     22     19     16
 
 
30. When determining district population sizes for purposes of allocating members of Congress, the state Legislature, and other elected officials, prison inmates in New York State are counted as residents of the district in which their prison is located. Do you think A) Prison inmates should be counted as residents of the districts in which their prison is located? Or do you think B) Prison inmates should be counted as residents of their home districts?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
A)In prison location 25%    24%    24%    25%    22%    28%
B)In home districts  60     55     64     63     64     57
DK/NA                15     20     12     13     15     16
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
A)In prison location 25%    27%    20%    26%
B)In home districts  56     62     64     63
DK/NA                19     11     16     12
 
 
31. As you may know the MTA is the agency which provides rail and bus service in the NY Metropolitan area. Do you think the state government should provide additional funds to the MTA, or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Yes                  44%    29%    59%    38%    41%    48%
No                   48     63     34     54     53     44
DK/NA                 8      8      6      8      6      9
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Yes                  30%    62%    41%    43%
No                   58     33     55     51
DK/NA                12      5      4      5
 
 
32. Currently, employers in New York City and the suburban areas served by the MTA pay a special tax to help the transit agency. Do you think that tax should be increased, remain the same, decreased, or eliminated?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Increased            13%    12%    15%    13%    14%    12%
Remain the same      42     34     48     38     40     43
Decreased            10     12      9      8      8     12
Eliminated           26     31     19     31     31     22
DK/NA                 9     10      9     10      8     11
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Increased            14%    15%    10%    14%
Remain the same      42     46     33     41
Decreased             7     12     11      8
Eliminated           21     22     40     29
DK/NA                16      5      5      8
 
 
33. Thinking about the number of women who hold high level political office in the United States today such as governors and members of Congress - would you say that there should be more, should be fewer, or is the number about right?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Should be more       56%    37%    73%    50%    46%    65%
Should be fewer       3      5      2      3      2      3
About right          29     44     18     32     36     22
DK/NA                12     13      8     16     15     10
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Should be more       52%    61%    55%    57%
Should be fewer       3      3      1      3
About right          31     27     26     27
DK/NA                13      9     17     14
 
 
34. Who do you think are more likely to have the right priorities - male elected officials or female elected officials or is there not much difference between them?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
                     
Male officials        5%     8%     3%     6%     5%     5%
Female officials     22     17     26     22     16     28
Not much difference  69     72     66     68     74     63
DK/NA                 4      4      5      3      5      4
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Male officials        5%     7%     2%     3%
Female officials     23     22     20     19
Not much difference  68     67     71     73
DK/NA                 4      3      6      4
 
 
35. Who do you think are more likely to be problem solvers - male elected officials or female elected officials or is there not much difference between them?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Male officials        6%    11%     4%     5%     7%     5%
Female officials     32     27     37     32     22     41
Not much difference  59     60     55     61     67     51
DK/NA                 3      2      4      2      3      3
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Male officials        5%     8%     5%     8%
Female officials     35     29     32     27
Not much difference  58     60     59     64
DK/NA                 3      3      4      2
 
 
36. Who do you think are more likely to have sex scandals - male elected officials or female elected officials or is there not much difference between them?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Male officials       78%    77%    80%    78%    75%    80%
Female officials      1      -      2      1      1      1
Not much difference  18     22     15     18     20     16
DK/NA                 3      1      3      4      4      3
 
                                          Union
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    HsHlds
 
Male officials       78%    75%    82%    80%
Female officials      -      2      2      -
Not much difference  19     19     14     17
DK/NA                 3      4      2      3
 
 

Demographic Summary