How many people still have Governor Paterson's back after the Times reported on Monday night that he personally orchestrated a campaign of (what looks a lot like) intimidation and witness tampering against Sherr-una Booker, a woman who was attacked by Paterson's top aide, David Johnson? A lot more than you'd think! A Marist poll released yesterday showed that 66 percent of registered voters want Paterson to serve out his term. A Quinnipiac poll released this morning isn't much different 61 percent of registered voters want Paterson to tough it out.
That looks like good news for Paterson, and we're sure he'll trumpet these numbers when he's asked about pressure to resign. Except that the polls belie the reality of the situation, because most of the surveying was done before Monday night's damaging Times story. Marist called poll respondents that day, while Quinnipiac called them Monday and Tuesday. And guess what happened on Tuesday?
"[T]here was a noticeable slip in support from the first night to the second night of the survey, after more damaging news came out and the National Organization for Women called for the Governor to step down," [Quinnipiac polling director Maurice] Carroll added. "Could this continue getting worse by the day?"
Probably! As all the awful details permeate the public consciousness, we would be surprised if support for Paterson remaining in office stays so high. For example, how many people will be turned off by the Times' latest revelation, that Paterson told a go-between between he and Booker, in mobster fashion, "Tell her the governor wants her to make this go away." Ah, the best-laid schemes of mice and men.
Investigators Are Told of Paterson Bid to Quiet Accuser [NYT]
March 3, 2010 - Paterson Should Stay, Despite Lowest Approval Ever, New York State Voters Tell Quinnipiac University Poll; Independent Prosecutor Should Probe Gov, Voters Say 2-1 [Quinnipiac]
3/2: Most Voters Don’t Want Paterson to Resign But Question His Ability to Govern [Marist]