October 28, 1998 - Vacco Holds Lead Over Spitzer In A.G. Race, Quinnipiac College Poll Finds; Pataki Continues To Roll Up Big Number In Reelect Bid
Republican incumbent Attorney General Dennis Vacco leads Democratic challenger Eliot Spitzer 47 - 34 percent among New York State likely voters, with 18 percent undecided, according to a Quinnipiac College Poll released today.

In an October 15 poll by the independent Quinnipiac College, Vacco was ahead 45 - 33 percent among likely voters.

The race for Governor remains frozen, with Republican incumbent George Pataki holding a 57 - 24 percent lead over Democratic challenger Peter Vallone among likely voters, with 10 percent for Independence Party candidate Thomas Golisano and 3 percent for Liberal Party candidate Betsy McCaughey Ross. These numbers are virtually unchanged from September 27 and October 15 Quinnipiac College polls.

Pataki leads Vallone 64 - 11 percent among upstate likely voters and 61 - 24 percent among suburban voters. Golisano gets 16 percent of upstate likely voters. In New York City, Pataki and Vallone, the City Council Speaker, split 41 - 43 percent among likely voters.

If Pataki and Vallone were the only candidates running for Governor, Pataki would win 65 - 30 percent among likely voters.

"Usually, candidates lose `job performance' points and favorability in the campaign hammering of an election year. Not Gov. Pataki. He's close to his peak rating and his election numbers against Vallone continue to look like a blowout," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac College Polling Institute.

"The numbers don't move in the Governor's race. They just wiggle."

"New Yorkers don't dislike Vallone. They just don't have a reason to choose him over a popular incumbent," Carroll said. "And one week before the election, 52 percent of New York's registered voters don't know enough about Vallone to form an opinion."

"The Attorney General's race, over-shadowed by the red hot race for U.S. Senate and the Governor's race, has drawn little voter interest. So they're sticking with the incumbent. We still must keep an eye on that big 18 percent undecided.

"In this race, 50 percent of voters don't know enough about Vacco and 66 percent don't know enough about Spitzer to form an opinion."

Pataki gets a 64 - 25 percent approval rating among registered voters. By a 55 - 18 percent margin, New York voters have a favorable opinion of Pataki, with 22 percent mixed and 4 percent who say they haven't heard enough to form an opinion.

Among his challengers, ratings are:
                        Favorable  Unfavorable  Mixed  No opinion
                        
Ross                    11         29           14     45
Vallone                 18         13           16     52
Golisano                13         11           16     57



Democratic incumbent State Comptroller H. Carl McCall holds a 57 - 20 percent lead over Republican challenger Bruce Blakeman among likely voters.

"New York has a habit of electing comptrollers and governors from opposite parties, and we're seeing that habit in huge margins for the two incumbents," Carroll said.

"When the incumbents all get reelected, taxpayers save big bucks because they don't have to print new stationary or re-paint all those highway construction signs."

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

1. Do you approve or disapprove of the way George Pataki is handling his job as Governor of New York?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Approve 64% 69% 54% 68% 86% 45% 66% 63%

Disapprove 25 20 35 23 7 41 24 26

DK/NA 11 11 11 9 8 14 10 11



5. How much attention have you been paying to this year's campaigns for Governor and United States Senator? A lot, some, only a little, or none at all?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


A lot 31% 30% 31% 32% 28% 30% 34% 27%

Some 39 39 39 40 44 42 35 43

Only a little 23 25 22 20 22 21 23 23

None at all 6 6 8 5 5 6 7 7

DK/NA 1 - - 2 - 1 1 -



6. Is your opinion of George Pataki favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 55% 60% 43% 61% 79% 34% 55% 52%

Unfavorable 18 14 25 16 7 26 19 18

Mixed 22 20 25 20 11 32 22 23

Haven't heard enough 4 4 7 1 3 6 4 6

Refused 1 1 - 1 1 1 - 1



7. Is your opinion of Peter Vallone favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 18% 8% 29% 20% 8% 28% 18% 18%

Unfavorable 13 11 13 16 19 8 13 13

Mixed 16 12 22 16 14 16 19 15

Haven't heard enough 52 68 35 47 58 46 49 53

Refused 1 1 1 2 1 2 1 1



8. Is your opinion of Betsy McCaughey Ross favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about her?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 11% 9% 12% 14% 7% 15% 12% 11%

Unfavorable 29 24 30 35 33 26 29 30

Mixed 14 13 14 17 11 14 18 16

Haven't heard enough 45 53 42 34 47 44 40 42

Refused 1 1 2 - 1 1 1 1



9. Is your opinion of Thomas Golisano favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                       Oct 15
                Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 13% 18% 9% 10% 12% 13% 15% 12%

Unfavorable 11 14 9 10 15 9 11 9

Mixed 16 21 12 15 15 15 18 15

Haven't heard enough 57 45 68 63 56 61 53 63

Refused 2 2 1 2 2 2 2 1



10. If the 1998 election for Governor were being held today, would you vote for Peter Vallone the Democratic candidate, George Pataki the Republican candidate, Betsy McCaughey Ross the Liberal party candidate, or Thomas Golisano the Independence party candidate?

                                                                         Oct 15
                  Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Peter Vallone 22% 10% 38% 20% 3% 48% 16% 25%

George Pataki 55 61 42 62 86 28 56 50

Betsy McCaughey Ross 3 3 3 4 2 4 3 6

Tom Golisano 10 16 5 6 5 9 13 9

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

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

DK/NA 8 8 9 8 4 9 8 8



10. If the 1998 election for Governor were being held today, would you vote for Peter Vallone the Democratic candidate, George Pataki the Republican candidate, Betsy McCaughey Ross the Liberal party candidate, or Thomas Golisano the Independence party candidate? (LIKELY VOTERS)

                                    LIKELY VOTERS
                                                                         Oct 15
                  Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Peter Vallone 24% 11% 43% 24% 4% 51% 19% 25%

George Pataki 57 64 41 61 88 24 55 54

Betsy McCaughey Ross 3 2 3 2 1 5 2 4

Tom Golisano 10 16 4 6 4 9 18 9

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

DK/NA 7 5 9 7 3 10 6 6



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

                                  LIKELY VOTERS


Vallone Pataki Voters Voters

Mind made up 61% 79%

Might change mind 38 21

DK/NA 1 -



12. 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 the other candidates?

                                  LIKELY VOTERS


Vallone Pataki Voters Voters

Strongly favor 24% 56%

Like, but with reservations 37 34

Dislike other candidates 35 9

DK/NA 5 1



13. If George Pataki and Peter Vallone were the only two candidates on the ballot,and the election for Governor were being held today, would you vote for George Pataki or Peter Vallone?

                                          LIKELY VOTERS
                                          
                                                                         Oct 15
                   Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998
                   
Pataki             65%     76%     48%     64%     93%     32%     68%     63%
                   
Vallone            30      18      49      30       4      61      27      30
                   
DK/NA               5       6       3       7       3       6       6       7




20. Is your opinion of Dennis Vacco favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                         Oct 15
                   Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 22% 31% 15% 18% 29% 14% 25% 20%

Unfavorable 9 8 13 8 4 16 8 9

Mixed 17 17 15 20 14 17 21 19

Hvn't hrd enough 50 44 56 54 53 53 46 51

Refused 1 1 1 - 1 1 1 1



21. Is your opinion of Eliot Spitzer favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                         Oct 15
                   Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 10% 8% 14% 9% 5% 16% 10% 10%

Unfavorable 8 9 7 8 13 4 7 7

Mixed 15 14 15 16 11 17 17 15

Hvn't hrd enough 66 68 63 65 69 61 65 67

Refused 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1



22. If the 1998 election for State Attorney General were being held today, would you vote for Dennis Vacco the Republican candidate, or Eliot Spitzer the Democratic Candidate?

                                                                         Oct 15
                   Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Dennis Vacco 41% 51% 25% 43% 70% 16% 39% 37%

Eliot Spitzer 34 26 47 28 10 64 27 33

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

WON'T VOTE (VOL) 3 2 4 3 2 1 5 4

DK/NA 22 20 23 25 18 19 28 25



22. If the 1998 election for State Attorney General were being held today, would you vote for Dennis Vacco the Republican candidate, or Eliot Spitzer the Democratic candidate? (LIKELY VOTERS)

                                      LIKELY VOTERS
                                                                          Oct 15
                    Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Dennis Vacco 47% 58% 29% 46% 74% 16% 47% 45%

Eliot Spitzer 34 26 50 31 11 65 29 33

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

DK/NA 18 15 21 23 14 18 23 21



23. Is your opinion of H. Carl McCall favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                          Oct 15
                    Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 27% 24% 30% 26% 18% 35% 27% 23%

Unfavorable 5 4 6 7 7 4 6 4

Mixed 10 7 12 12 10 8 10 13

Haven't heard enough 58 63 52 55 65 54 56 60

Refused - 1 - - - - 1 1



24. Is your opinion of Bruce Blakeman favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                                          Oct 15
                    Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


Favorable 3% 2% 2% 5% 6% 2% 2% 4%

Unfavorable 2 2 2 3 2 5 1 2

Mixed 4 3 6 4 3 3 5 4

Haven't heard enough 90 92 89 87 88 90 91 89

Refused 1 1 1 - 1 - 1 -



25. If the 1998 election for State Controller were being held today, would you vote for H.Carl McCall the Democratic candidate or Bruce Blakeman the Republican candidate?

                                                                          Oct 15
                    Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


H. Carl McCall 50% 44% 59% 47% 27% 71% 50% 45%

Bruce Blakeman 19 22 14 20 44 6 11 20

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

WON'T VOTE (VOL) 4 5 5 2 3 2 6 5

DK/NA 27 28 21 31 26 19 32 9



25. If the 1998 election for State Controller were being held today, would you vote for H.Carl McCall the Democratic candidate or Bruce Blakeman the Republican candidate? (LIKELY VOTERS)

                                   LIKELY VOTERS
                                                                          Oct 15
                    Tot     Ups     NYC     Sub     Rep     Dem     Ind     1998


H. Carl McCall 57% 50% 67% 58% 34% 79% 61% 52%

Bruce Blakeman 20 25 14 16 44 5 11 21

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

DK/NA 23 23 19 26 22 16 28 26