Lee Zeldin is GOP’s best hope to end Democrat rule in New York

Republican New York gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin may not be as far from getting elected as the polls seem to show, when looking at previous contests in the state, according to the New York Post.

The Post seems to think Zeldin has a chance after seeing the latest Siena College survey, which showed that he was 14 points behind Democrat opponent Governor Kathy Hokul.

That deficit seems to be beyond any possible bias, but the Post looked at former Governor Andrew Cuomo’s (D) last campaign and found new hope that Zeldin has a chance for victory in November.

At the same point in Cuomo’s 2014 campaign, he led Republican opponent Rob Astorino by 32 points, and ultimately defeated him by exactly 14 points.

Zeldin’s chances

In other words, Cuomo’s numbers went down 18 points between the 2014 poll and the election. If the same trend happens in the current election, Zeldin wins by four.

The Post pointed out that enthusiasm for Hokul has been severely lacking, and that Zeldin leads with independents.

Zeldin still has to overcome a massive Democrat registration advantage of more than 3.5 million voters, but independents are increasing in the state and now make up around 25% of registered voters.

The current polling shows Zeldin at 39%, which is just one point below the 40% other elected Republicans in the state have had at this point in the race.

The obstacles

Zeldin still battles name recognition in the state, with about a third of those polled not having heard of him before. He has a fundraising deficit as well.

It’s not going to be an easy path to the governor’s mansion, but Zeldin feels that his emphasis on reducing crime and improving the economy will earn him more voters as the election gets closer.

He also claims that his internal polling shows him closer than 14 points behind Hokul, which is not surprising given the Democrat-favoring bias of many polls.

“This is important for our team,” he said of the Siena poll. “The next poll should show us gaining even more momentum.”

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