July 26, 2012 - New York Voters Nix Pay Raise For Lawmakers 5-1, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Voters Back Higher Taxes For Rich, Health Care Law

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New York State voters oppose 80 - 16 percent a pay raise for state legislators. Opposition is over 70 percent among every group and in every part of the state, except voters with household income of more than $250,000, who oppose the pay raise 53 - 45 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Suggesting a pay raise for legislators as part of a deal to increase the minimum wage in New York State is a bad idea, voters say 66 - 28 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN- uh-pe-ack) University poll finds. Again, there is strong opposition from every group and in every region.

Linking a legislative pay raise to a law limiting the size of campaign contributions also is a bad idea, voters say 63 - 28 percent, with every group opposed by wide margins.

When asked, however, how often state legislators should get a pay raise:
  • 3 percent say every year;
  • 43 percent say every two to five years;
  • 23 percent say every six to 10 years;
  • 12 percent say less often;
  • 10 percent say never.
"The talk in Albany says there'll be a legislative pay raise voted in a special session after the election, but it doesn't look like a popular idea," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"Could there be a deal? Bigger legislative paychecks in exchange for some campaign- finance reforms? How about buying some love for lawmakers by raising the minimum wage? Voters want none of it. More than two out of three voters say state legislators should get a raise every six to 10 years, or less, but Albany lawmakers haven't had a raise in 13 years.

"Lawmakers looking for a raise might want to get that message out to the voters."

Voters do not believe 80 - 15 percent, that raising legislators' pay will attract better candidates for office. The Legislature gets a negative 31 - 51 percent approval rating, the best score since a negative 32 - 50 percent rating in a February 17, 2009, Quinnipiac University poll.

Drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale splits voters right down the middle 43 - 44 percent. Republicans support drilling 66 - 23 percent. Democrats oppose drilling 53 - 32 percent. Among independent voters, 44 percent support drilling while 47 percent oppose it.

Upstate voters split 43 - 44 percent, as New York City voters say no 46 - 41 percent and suburban voters say yes to drilling 48 - 40 percent.

Voters believe 75 - 17 percent that drilling will create jobs, with strong support among all groups. But voters believe 53 - 12 percent that hydro-fracking will damage the environment. Republicans say 31 - 27 percent it will cause damage, and all other groups strongly agree that fracking will hurt the environment.

New York State voters support more than 2-1 raising federal income taxes on upper income families:
  • 29 percent support raising taxes on people with a household income of more than $250,000 per year;
  • 40 percent support a tax hike on people with a household income of more than $1 million per year;
  • 28 percent are opposed to any federal income tax hike.
Among voters with household income of more than $250,000 per year, 12 percent support the $250,000 tax hike threshold, while 49 percent say set the mark at $1 million and 38 percent oppose any tax hike.

All voters reject 53 - 39 percent the argument that increasing taxes on people in households making more than $250,000 will discourage small businesses from hiring.

New York State voters say 55 - 36 percent that the U.S. Congress should not try to repeal the health care law.

Backing the Affordable Care Act are Democrats 80 - 12 percent and independent voters 53 - 37 percent, while Republicans favor repeal 73 - 20 percent.

From July 17 - 23, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,779 New York State voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.3 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.

12. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the state legislature is handling its job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Approve              31%    30%    37%    30%    30%    32%    28%    42%    42%
Disapprove           51     55     41     58     57     46     55     40     38
DK/NA                18     16     22     12     13     22     17     18     21
 
                     UpStat NYC    Sub
 
Approve              28%    35%    31%
Disapprove           58     45     49
DK/NA                14     20     20
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the state legislature is handling its job?
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jul 26  Feb 15  Dec 20  Oct 26  Sep 20  Apr 04  Sep 01
                     2012    2012    2011    2011    2011    2007    2010
 
Approve              31      29      26      25      26      34      15
Disapprove           51      58      59      63      61      43      75
DK/NA                18      13      15      13      13      23       9
 
 
13. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in New York State today; are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Very satisfied        4%     1%     5%     4%     3%     4%     3%     4%     6%
Smwht satisfied      42     30     53     41     41     43     39     54     43
Smwht dissatisfied   33     40     28     32     32     33     35     27     28
Very dissatisfied    21     29     12     23     22     19     22     13     20
DK/NA                 1      -      2      1      1      1      1      1      3
 
                     UpStat NYC    Sub
 
Very satisfied        3%     5%     3%
Smwht satisfied      39     46     41
Smwht dissatisfied   31     31     38
Very dissatisfied    26     16     18
DK/NA                 1      2      -
 
TREND: In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in New York State today; are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                                                             VERY+SMWHT SAT
                                                             High    Low
                     Jul 26  May 31  Feb 15  Dec 20  Oct 26  Feb 25  Jun 23
                     2012    2012    2012    2011    2011    1998    2010
 
Very satisfied        4       6       3       3       4      13       1
Smwht satisfied      42      46      39      39      30      60      18
Smwht dissatisfied   33      28      33      35      34      20      33
Very dissatisfied    21      18      25      23      31       7      47
DK/NA                 1       1       -       1       1       1       1
 
 
18. Would you support or oppose a pay raise for members of the state legislature, who currently earn a base salary of $79,500 a year?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              16%    15%    20%    17%    18%    15%    16%    22%    11%
Oppose               80     82     76     79     78     81     81     72     88
DK/NA                 4      3      4      4      3      4      3      6      2
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Support              11%    16%    23%    45%
Oppose               86     81     75     53
DK/NA                 4      3      2      2
 
 
19. (If Support Q18) Do you think the base salary for members of the state legislature should be $100,000 a year, should be less than $100,000 a year, or should be more than $100,000 a year?
                     SUPPORT PAY RAISE Q18
                     Tot    Men    Wom
 
$100K                43%    42%    46%
Less than $100K      34     34     34
More than $100K      16     21     12
DK/NA                 6      4      8
 
 
19a. (Combined Q18 and Q19) Would you support or oppose a pay raise for members of the state legislature, who currently earn a base salary of $79,500 a year? IF SUPPORT: Do you think the base salary for members of the state legislature should be $100,000 a year, should be less than $100,000 a year, or should be more than $100,000 a year?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Increase to $100K     7%     7%     9%     7%     8%     7%     7%    10%     6%
Increase < $100K      6      4      7      6      6      5      5      8      4
Increase > $100K      3      4      2      3      4      2      3      2      1
Oppose increase      80     82     76     79     78     81     81     72     88
DK/NA                 5      3      6      4      4      5      4      8      2
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Increase to $100K     5%     8%    11%    18%
Increase < $100K      4      6      6     12
Increase > $100K      1      2      5     14
Oppose increase      86     81     75     53
DK/NA                 5      3      3      3
 
 
20. Suppose the state legislature agrees to increase the minimum wage in exchange for an increase in their salaries. Do you think this deal would be a good idea or a bad idea?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Good idea            28%    21%    34%    26%    25%    30%    23%    43%    34%
Bad idea             66     74     58     72     69     64     71     50     61
DK/NA                 6      5      8      3      6      6      6      6      5
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Good idea            32%    24%    25%    25%
Bad idea             61     72     72     73
DK/NA                 7      4      2      3
 
 
21. Suppose the state legislature agrees to limit the amount of campaign contributions they would be allowed to accept in exchange for an increase in their salaries. Do you think this deal would be a good idea or a bad idea?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Good idea            28%    27%    32%    29%    31%    26%    30%    29%    20%
Bad idea             63     66     59     63     62     64     62     63     67
DK/NA                 9      7     10      8      7     11      9      8     13
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Good idea            24%    31%    38%    38%
Bad idea             66     64     57     61
DK/NA                10      6      5      1
 
 
22. In your opinion, how often should state legislators get a pay raise, every year, every 2 to 5 years, every 6 to 10 years, less often, or never?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Every year            3%     3%     3%     3%     4%     3%     3%     4%     3%
2 to 5 years         43     40     48     43     42     45     42     51     44
6 to 10 years        23     25     23     21     24     21     23     24     23
Less often           12     14     10     13     11     13     12     10     17
Never                10     10      7     10     11      9     10      6      7
DK/NA                 9      9      8      9      9      9     10      6      7
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Every year            3%     2%     4%     9%
2 to 5 years         38     48     52     54
6 to 10 years        26     24     22     14
Less often           13     11     11      9
Never                11      8      7     10
DK/NA                 8      8      5      5
 
 
23. Do you think that by raising legislators' pay, they'll be able to attract better candidates or don't you think so?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes                  15%    14%    16%    16%    15%    14%    14%    23%    12%
No                   80     83     78     80     80     81     83     68     84
DK/NA                 5      3      7      4      4      5      4      9      3
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Yes                  16%    13%    15%    23%
No                   77     85     83     75
DK/NA                 8      2      2      2
 
 
24. 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    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Drilling             43%    66%    32%    44%    52%    36%    46%    36%    35%
No drilling          44     23     53     47     37     50     41     48     52
DK/NA                13     11     16      9     11     14     13     16     13
 
                                          HEARD OF HYDRO-FRACKING Q27
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    Yes    No
 
Drilling             43%    41%    48%    39%    50%
No drilling          44     46     40     51     32
DK/NA                13     14     12      9     18
 
TREND: 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?
                     Jul 26  Dec 21  Oct 27  Sep 21  Aug 11
                     2012    2011    2011    2011    2011
 
Drilling             43      44      44      45      47
No drilling          44      45      43      41      42
DK/NA                13      11      12      13      12
 
 
25. 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    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              47%    36%    53%    48%    47%    46%    47%    51%    43%
Oppose               39     51     31     40     41     38     39     35     44
DK/NA                14     13     15     12     12     16     14     14     13
 
                                          HEARD OF HYDRO-FRACKING Q27
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    Yes    No
 
Support              45%    48%    46%    51%    40%
Oppose               42     37     38     39     40
DK/NA                13     15     16     11     19
 
TREND: Do you support or oppose a new tax on companies drilling for natural gas in the state's Marcellus Shale?
                     Jul 26  Dec 21  Oct 27  Sep 21  Aug 11
                     2012    2011    2011    2011    2011
 
Support              47      57      55      51      59
Oppose               39      31      32      36      29
DK/NA                14      12      13      12      12
 
 
26. 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    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes                  75%    89%    72%    70%    79%    72%    76%    73%    73%
No                   17      6     17     24     15     18     16     19     17
DK/NA                 8      5     11      6      5     11      8      7     10
 
                                          HEARD OF HYDRO-FRACKING Q27
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    Yes    No
 
Yes                  74%    74%    80%    72%    81%
No                   19     17     12     21     10
DK/NA                 7     10      8      7      9
 
TREND: Do you think that drilling for natural gas in the state's Marcellus Shale will create jobs or not?
                     Jul 26  Dec 21  Oct 27  Sep 21  Aug 11
                     2012    2011    2011    2011    2011
 
Yes                  75      75      73      74      75
No                   17      18      19      19      17
DK/NA                 8       7       9       7       8
 
 
27. Have you heard or read anything about hydro-fracking?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes                  62%    66%    53%    69%    68%    56%    74%    28%    29%
No                   37     33     46     31     31     43     26     70     68
DK/NA                 1      1      2      -      1      1      1      1      3
 
                     UpStat NYC    Sub
 
Yes                  80%    43%    59%
No                   19     55     40
DK/NA                 1      2      1
 
TREND: Have you heard or read anything about hydro-fracking?
                     Jul 26  Dec 21  Oct 27  Sep 21  Aug 11
                     2012    2011    2011    2011    2011
 
Yes                  62      59      54      53      57
No                   37      39      44      46      42
DK/NA                 1       1       2       1       1
 
 
28. 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    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Will damage      53%    31%    63%    55%    48%    58%    50%    62%    60%
No/Won't Damage      12     27      4     12     19      7     15      4      5
Don't Know           34     41     32     33     32     35     34     33     35
REFUSED               1      1      -      -      1      -      1      -      -
 
                                          HEARD OF HYDRO-FRACKING Q27
                     UpStat NYC    Sub    Yes    No
 
Yes/Will damage      52%    57%    50%    60%    42%
No/Won't Damage      15      9     13     17      5
Don't Know           32     34     37     22     52
REFUSED               1      -      -      1      -
 
TREND: 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?
                     Jul 26  Dec 21  Oct 27  Sep 21  Aug 11
                     2012    2011    2011    2011    2011
 
Yes/Will damage      53      55      50      51      52
No/Won't damage      12      13      14      13      15
Don't Know           34      31      35      35      33
REFUSED               1       1       1       -       -
 
 
29. Which would you prefer: A) Raise federal income taxes on people with a household income of more than $250,000 per year, B) Raise federal income taxes on people with a household income of more than $1 million per year, or C) Don't raise federal income taxes on anyone?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
A) Raise if >$250K   29%    19%    41%    25%    28%    31%    31%    25%    25%
B) Raise if >$1M     40     29     44     39     37     42     36     49     54
C) Don't raise       28     48     13     32     32     25     31     25     20
DK/NA                 3      3      2      3      4      2      2      1      1
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
A) Raise if >$250K   32%    34%    29%    12%
B) Raise if >$1M     41     36     40     49
C) Don't raise       25     26     30     38
DK/NA                 2      3      1      1
 
 
30. Do you think raising federal income taxes on people with a household income of more than $250,000 per year would discourage small businesses from hiring more employees or don't you think so?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes                  39%    57%    25%    41%    42%    35%    40%    35%    39%
No                   53     36     66     52     51     54     52     56     55
DK/NA                 9      7      9      8      6     11      9      9      7
 
                     ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME
                     <50K  50-100 100-250 >250K
 
Yes                  35%    33%    46%    48%
No                   54     61     50     47
DK/NA                11      6      4      4
 
 
31. Do you think Congress should try to repeal the health care law, or should they let it stand?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Repeal it            36%    73%    12%    37%    39%    33%    44%     7%    27%
Let it stand         55     20     80     53     54     56     47     90     58
DK/NA                 9      7      8     10      7     11      9      3     15
 
                     COLLEGE DEG   ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME     AGE IN YEARS.....
                     Yes    No     <30K  30-50  50-100 >100K   18-34  35-54  55+
 
Repeal it            33%    38%    30%    37%    38%    37%    34%    37%    35%
Let it stand         62     51     54     58     55     58     57     54     55
DK/NA                 6     12     16      5      7      5      8      9     11
 
 
32. The Supreme Court has heard a challenge to the health care law and voted to uphold it. Do you agree or disagree with the Supreme Court decision to uphold the health care law?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Agree                55%    20%    76%    56%    54%    55%    49%    79%    52%
Disagree             38     70     18     37     41     35     43     19     36
DK/NA                 7     10      6      7      5     10      8      2     12
 
                     COLLEGE DEG   ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME     AGE IN YEARS.....
                     Yes    No     <30K  30-50  50-100 >100K   18-34  35-54  55+
 
Agree                65%    48%    53%    54%    56%    63%    52%    54%    56%
Disagree             31     43     34     42     40     35     43     39     34
DK/NA                 4      9     13      4      4      3      5      6      9
 
 

Demographic Summary