October 27, 1998 - D'Amato-Schumer Senate Race Heads For Photo-Finish, Quinnipiac College Poll Finds; New Yorkers Say 5 - 1 This Is A `Dirty' Campaign
The U.S. Senate race is headed for a photo finish, with 48 percent of likely voters for Rep. Charles Schumer, the Democratic challenger, and 44 percent for Republican incumbent Alfonse D'Amato, according to a Quinnipiac College Poll released today.

This compares to an October 14 poll by the independent Quinnipiac College where Rep. Schumer got 46 percent of likely voters and Sen. D'Amato got 45 percent.

D'Amato leads 54 - 37 percent among likely voters upstate, while Schumer takes New York City 62 - 29 percent. In the suburbs, Schumer gets 50 percent of likely voters, to 46 percent for D'Amato, a tie. The October 14 poll showed D'Amato with a razor-thin 51 - 46 percent lead in the suburbs.

Among registered voters, 76 percent say this is a "dirty" campaign, while 14 percent say it is "clean," with 10 percent undecided.

Among the 76 percent who say the campaign is "dirty," 39 percent blame D'Amato, while 19 percent blame Schumer, 32 percent blame both candidates and 10 percent are undecided.

"Talk about close! This race has been tied since the primary, our polls have shown. There's been a barely noticeable shift among suburban voters, but in a race this close, we notice," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac College Polling Institute.

"Time for a change or stick with experience? New Yorkers give their junior Senator a split decision on that one," Carroll said.

In another measure of the closeness of the race, 49 percent of registered voters say D'Amato has been in the Senate too long and it's time for a change, while 45 percent say D'Amato's experience and seniority are good for New York.

"Does Schumer need a map to find his way north of the Gowanus Canal? D'Amato's ads say so and they seem to be having an effect. Is this a dirty campaign. You bet, voters say. And D'Amato gets more of the blame than Schumer."

By a 71 - 18 percent margin, registered voters say D'Amato spends more time attacking Schumer than explaining what he would do if reelected. By a 64 - 23 percent margin, voters say Schumer spends more time attacking D'Amato than explaining.

Among registered voters, D'Amato's favorability is 31 - 36 percent, with 25 percent mixed and 8 percent saying they don't know enough to form an opinion. Schumer's favorability is 25 - 24 percent, with 21 percent mixed and 30 percent saying they don't know enough to form an opinion. In the October 14 poll, 37 percent did not have an opinion of Schumer.

Registered voters statewide are split 34 - 34 percent, with 33 percent undecided, about whether Schumer "cares about the needs and problems of upstate residents." But only 25 percent of upstate voters think Schumer cares about them, while 44 percent do not, with 31 percent undecided. Upstate voters say 57 - 33 percent that D'Amato cares about them.

Looking at the impact of possible impeachment proceedings, 8 percent of registered voters say it makes them more likely to vote for D'Amato, while 11 percent are more likely to vote for Schumer and 78 percent say impeachment won't have much impact on their vote.

From October 20 -25, Quinnipiac College surveyed 1,065 New York State registered voters, including 547 likely voters. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3 percent for registered voters and 4.2 percent for likely voters. The Quinnipiac College Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut as a public service and for research. For additional data: www.quinnipiac.edu

2. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Alfonse D'Amato is handling his job as United States Senator?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998
                    
Approve              45%     49%     38%     47%     43%     53%     39%    44%
                    
Disapprove           45      38      53      47      45      37      60     47
                    
DK/NA                10      13       9       7      11      10       1      9




14. Is your opinion of Charles Schumer favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998
                    
Favorable            25%     13%     41%     24%     22%     19%     53%    22%
                    
Unfavorable          24      30      15      25      27      28      18     19
                    
Mixed                21      18      21      24      16      23      22     20
                    
Hvn't hrd enough     30      38      22      26      34      30       7     37
                    
Refused               1       1       1       -       1       1       -      1




15. Is your opinion of Alfonse D'Amato favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Favorable 31% 34% 27% 34% 30% 38% 24% 30%

Unfavorable 36 31 45 33 35 30 51 39

Mixed 25 24 21 30 26 24 23 23

Hvn't hrd enough 8 11 7 4 9 7 1 7

Refused - - - - - - - 1



16. If the 1998 election for United States Senator were being held today, would you vote for Charles Schumer the Democratic candidate or Alfonse D'Amato the Republican candidate?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Charles Schumer 45% 33% 59% 45% 39% 38% 70% 46%

Alfonse D'Amato 44 53 29 48 48 53 28 41

SOMEONE ELSE (VOL) 1 2 2 - 2 1 - 1

WON'T VOTE (VOL) 2 2 2 1 2 2 - 3

DK/NA 8 9 8 6 10 7 2 10



16. If the 1998 election for United States Senator were being held today, would you vote for Charles Schumer the Democratic candidate or Alfonse D'Amato the Republican candidate? (Likely Voters)

                                         LIKELY VOTERS
                                                                        Oct 14
                          Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Men     Wom     1998


Charles Schumer 48% 37% 62% 50% 41% 54% 46%

Alfonse D'Amato 44 54 29 46 53 36 45

SOMEONE ELSE (VOL) 1 2 - - - 1 1

DK/NA 8 8 9 4 6 8 7



17. Is your mind made up, or do you think you might change your mind before the election?

                                 LIKELY VOTERS


Schumer D'Amato Voters Voters

Mind Made up 85% 87%

Might change mind 15 13

DK/NA - -



18. Would you describe your support for (candidate's name) as strongly favoring him, or do you like him but with reservations, or do you support him because you dislike (other candidate's name)?

                                LIKELY VOTERS


Schumer D'Amato Voters Voters



Strongly favor 37% 47%

Like, but with reservations 22 40

Dislike other candidate 39 13

DK/NA 3 1



26. Would you say that Alfonse D'Amato cares about the needs and problems of New York City residents or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 63% 74% 47% 64% 65% 67% 55% 62%

No 26 12 44 27 20 24 37 28

DK/NA 11 14 10 8 15 8 8 10



27. Would you say that Alfonse D'Amato is honest and trustworthy or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 41% 46% 32% 43% 44% 47% 25% 38%

No 45 38 53 48 41 39 66 49

DK/NA 14 16 15 9 15 14 9 13



28. Would you say that Alfonse D'Amato cares about the needs and problems of upstate residents or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 53% 57% 53% 47% 56% 54% 50% 51%

No 31 33 28 32 31 30 29 33

DK/NA 16 10 20 20 13 16 21 16



29. Would you say that Charles Schumer cares about the needs and problems of New York City residents or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 65% 63% 66% 66% 66% 62% 78% 61%

No 13 9 18 15 11 16 12 12

DK/NA 22 28 16 19 23 22 10 27



30. Would you say that Charles Schumer is honest and trustworthy or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 44% 30% 55% 51% 39% 39% 71% 46%

No 24 27 21 24 24 27 19 21

DK/NA 32 43 24 25 37 35 10 33



31. Would you say that Charles Schumer cares about the needs and problems of upstate residents or not?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Yes 34% 25% 44% 35% 30% 30% 53% 37%

No 34 44 21 32 38 37 18 28

DK/NA 33 31 34 33 31 33 28 35



32. Which statement comes closest to your point of view: (A) Alfonse D'Amato has been in the Senate too long and it's time for a change, or (B) Alfonse D'Amato's experience and seniority in the Senate will do New York alot of good

                          Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew 


A) Alfonse D'Amato has been in the Senate too long and it's time for a change. 49% 41% 59% 48% 46% 42% 61%

B) Alfonse D'Amato's experience and seniority in the Senate will do New York alot of good. 45 52 34 49 47 54 28

DK/NA 6 7 7 3 7 3 11



33. What do you think Alfonse D'Amato is spending more time doing in his campaign - explaining what he would do if re-elected Senator or attacking Charles Schumer?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Explaining 18% 19% 16% 19% 19% 21% 12% 21%

Attacking 71 68 70 75 68 69 75 66

DK/NA 12 13 14 7 13 10 13 13



34. What do you think Charles Schumer is spending more time doing in his campaign - explaining what he would do if elected Senator or attacking Alfonse D'Amato?

                                                                          Oct 14
                     Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew    1998


Explaining 23% 18% 29% 25% 22% 22% 39% 24%

Attacking 64 68 57 64 63 69 50 60

DK/NA 13 14 14 10 15 10 11 16



35. Would you be more likely to describe this year's Senate campaign as "dirty" or "clean"?
                                                                             
                          Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew 


Dirty 76% 80% 72% 76% 78% 75% 76%

Clean 14 11 17 16 12 16 14

DK/NA 10 9 11 8 9 9 11



36. (If Dirty) Who do you think is more responsible for the dirty campaign - Alfonse D'Amato or Charles Schumer?

                          Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew  


D'Amato 39% 31% 45% 45% 35% 35% 62%

Schumer 19 21 16 17 22 23 9

BOTH (VOL) 32 37 31 27 33 33 19

DK/NA 10 11 8 11 10 9 9



42. How much will your vote for Senate in November be influenced by the scandal surrounding President Clinton? Will it make you more likely to vote for Alfonse D'Amato the Republican candidate, more likely to vote for Charles Schumer the Democratic candidate, or won't it have much effect one way or the other?



                          Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Prot    Cath    Jew


D'Amato 8% 8% 7% 10% 8% 11% 9%

Schumer 11 6 16 13 8 9 23

No effect 78 83 73 76 82 78 66

DK/NA 3 3 3 1 3 3 2