Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Kennedy not the clear favorite for Senate seat, poll says

A new poll out Wednesday suggests there is no clear favorite among New Yorkers on who they think should replace Hillary Clinton in the U.S. Senate — and despite the buzz over Caroline Kennedy, the soon-to-be-vacant Senate seat is not necessarily hers for the taking.

According to a new survey from Siena College, 26 percent of New York voters and 30 percent of New York Democrats favor another potential pick with a famous last name — current New York attorney general Andrew Cuomo, the son of former governor Mario Cuomo.

Some 23 percent of New York voters — and 28 percent of Democrats — want Kennedy to get the post. Nearly one in five preferred one of the othe Democrats often mentioned for the post, and another one in five had no preference for their next U.S. Senator.

The top two potential choices also have nearly identical favorability ratings — 58-21 percent for Kennedy and 59-24 percent for Cuomo.

"Both Kennedy and Cuomo have high name recognition among New Yorkers, and Cuomo has run for — and won — statewide office, which may help him marginally," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Since the poll was done before Kennedy's officially announced her interest in the Senate seat, it's possible her support today is a little higher than it was before her announcement. But ultimately, the choice will be made by the Governor, not the voters of New York."


New Yorkers are roughly divided on who they want to be their next senator.

New Yorkers are roughly divided on who they want to be their next senator.

But while New Yorkers may be roughly divided on who they think should be named to the post, 31 percent believe Gov. David Paterson will ultimately pick Kennedy compared to the 16 percent who say Cuomo will get it.

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