Things are looking up for Kathy Hochul.
A new Siena College poll found 56 percent of registered voters said they approved of the job she is doing as governor, her highest approval rating yet for this survey, while 36 percent disapproved. It’s a seven-point increase from Siena’s poll last month, which found the newly reelected governor with a 49 percent job-approval rating with 44 percent disapproving. Hochul also received her highest favorability rating from Siena as 48 percent of voters indicated they had a favorable opinion of her.
These new numbers come only months after Hochul fended off a significant reelection challenge from Republican former U.S. representative Lee Zeldin and as she is currently embroiled in a controversy over her failed nomination for chief judge of the state’s highest court. The poll was conducted from January 15 to 19.
Voters also expressed support for many of the policy proposals Hochul unveiled in her State of the State address earlier this month. Eighty-five percent of voters backed her goal to not raise state income taxes this year, and 76 percent were in favor of basing increases in the minimum wage on inflation rates.
On the issue of crime, which played a pivotal role in the recent election, 61 percent of voters said they considered crime a “very serious” problem in New York State. Relatedly, Hochul’s proposal to allow judges more discretion in setting bail for offenders accused of serious crimes received support from 65 percent of voters polled.
Despite being in favor of some of her goals, the voters polled seemed skeptical Hochul would be able to achieve them. When asked if they believed the governor would make progress in making New York more affordable, 59 percent said they didn’t, while 25 percent said they did. On whether Hochul would achieve progress in making New York safer, 45 percent said she wouldn’t, while 36 percent said she would.