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New Statewide Poll Shows Strong Majority of Likely Voters in Key Senate Races More Likely to Vote for Candidates Supporting Minimum Wage Increase Proposal, Ending Corporate Tax Loopholes for School Funding

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | October 28, 2014
 
   Residents in Long Island, Hudson Valley and Western New York explain importance of wages and school funding positions of candidates in moving voters, as GOTV efforts ramp up

 

New York – In the final full week of the campaigns for State Senate, Public Policy Polling released a statewide poll showing that a strong majority of likely voters across the state, and particularly in seven competitive New York State Senate districts that will determine control of the chamber, support a Good Jobs, Good Schools agenda of policy proposals that provide fair wages for workers and full funding for schools. The poll found that likely voters across the state overwhelmingly say they are more likely to vote for Senate candidates who support these policy proposals– nearly 2 of every 3 of the voters are more likely to choose a candidate supportive of increasing the minimum wage with local wage authorization and nearly 3 of every 4 are more likely to vote for a candidate that backs closing corporate tax loopholes to fully fund public schools.

 

“This poll shows that a super-majority of likely New York voters, including those in competitive State Senate districts, are clearly more likely to vote for candidates who support an increased minimum wage with local wage authorization and reducing tax loopholes for banks and corporations to increase funding to public schools,” said Jim Williams, polling analyst with Public Policy Polling. “These issues resonate deeply with likely New York voters, and candidates’ positions on them may very well play a determining role in the outcome of the November 4th elections.”

The poll data were released on a call with voters from across the state, who discussed how these issues are motivating them and their neighbors to Get Out the Vote in their communities before November 4th.

According to the poll, 71% of likely voters across the state support the current proposal to increase the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour, with subsequent increases based on increased cost of living and to grant localities the ability to raise their own minimum wage beyond the state level. 64% of likely voters said they would be more likely to vote for a New York State Senate candidate who supported this proposal.

 

On the questions of tax loopholes and school funding, approximately 3 out of every 4 likely voters across the state support closing tax loopholes for corporations and banks in order to increase public school funding, with 75% more likely to vote for a Senate candidate who supports that position.

 

The poll displayed statistically significant results from the seven competitive New York State Senate districts that will determine control of the chamber; in Long Island (Senate districts 3 and 7), the Hudson Valley and Capital regions (districts 40, 41 and 46), and Western New York (districts 55 and 60).

 

Senate District 3

 

In the Long Island race to replace Senator Lee Zeldin that includes Tom Croci and Adrienne Esposito, 67% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 70% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 58% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 66% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

“I am a mother of 3 children and my youngest son is in high school,” said Eugenia Woods, a Medford resident with the Long Island Progressive Coalition. “Too often, I see our schools get short-changed. On November 4th, I will be voting and when I do I will be looking for a candidate who will fully fund our public schools and raise the minimum wage to at least $10.10. My vote will go to the candidate who will pledge to support these key issues.”

Senate District 7

 

In the Long Island race between Adam Haber and Senator Jack Martins, 73% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 63% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 68% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 68% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

“Every day, my neighbors on Long Island and I talk about how hard it is to make ends meet on Long Island—particularly for those earning minimum wage,” said Carlos Reyes, a Long Island resident and member of Make the Road Action Fund. “This poll shows what I know from my community—when people go to vote on November 4th, they will be paying close attention to where candidates stand on increasing the minimum wage.”

Senate District 40

 

In the Hudson Valley race between Terrence Murphy and Justin Wagner, 69% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 66% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 56% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 61% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

“The funding of our public school system is imperative, as our children are the foundation of society and its future leaders, said Tira Skaggs, a minimum-wage worker in Peekskill with Community Voices Heard Power. “We stress the importance of education to them and mandate them to attend by law, but the conditions of our schools and constant cut backs completely contradict our objective. It perpetuates the idea that we don’t care, so why should they? We can’t let this stand, which is why my neighbors and I will be voting on this issue next Tuesday.”

Senate District 41

 

In the Hudson Valley race between Senator Terry Gipson and Sue Serino, 62% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 72% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 56% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 67% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

“Parents want to see their kids succeed, but they worry about how cuts to programs, from after-school to art, will take away that chance at success,” said Jodiah Jacobs, a Hudson Valley teacher and member of Citizen Action of New York. “The voters I’ve talked to who have minimum wage jobs just want to be able to pay their bills. Full funding for our schools and raising the wage are clearly issues that voters are concerned about.”

 

Senate District 46

 

In the Hudson Valley/Capital Region race between George Amedore and Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk, 69% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 73% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 62% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 69% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

“Voters know that the future of our community rests with our children, and that’s why fully funding our public schools is such an important election issue,” said Jamaica Miles, a parent leader with Citizen Action of New York and the Alliance for Quality Education from Schenectady. “With more and more programs on the chopping block, voters need to take note of this important issue. It affects all of us.”

 

Senate District 55

 

In the Rochester race between Rich Funke and Senator Ted O’Brien, 68% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 65% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 60% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 66% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

Senate District 60

 

In the Buffalo race between Timothy Gallagher, Senator Mark Grisanti, Marc Panepinto, and Kevin Stocker, 58% of likely voters in the district support the current minimum wage increase proposal and 68% support the proposal to close corporate tax loopholes to fund public schools. 51% of these voters indicated they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports the wage proposal and 66% were more likely to back a candidate supportive of the tax loophole-school funding proposal.

 

The full poll results can be downloaded here.

 

Methodological note: Public Policy Polling surveyed 546 New York voters (MoE +/- 4.2%), and oversamples in 7 State Senate Districts (MoE +/- 5.2 – 6.9%) from October 22 – 23, 2014.

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Contacts:
Long Island: Daniel Altschuler, Make the Road Action Fund, 917-494-5922 (English / Spanish)
Hudson Valley: Charlie Albanetti, Citizen Action of New York, 518-595-9047
Hudson Valley: Sondra Youdelman, Community Voices Heard Power, 718-839-4474
Upstate / Western New York: Colin O’Malley, Metro Justice, 716-400-6287
Statewide / Albany: Michael Kink, Strong Economy for All Coalition, 518-527-2787

(DOWNLOAD) PPP MinWage-SchoolFunding poll release v3