Following the accusations that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo authorized his state to underreport COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes, there has been a large shift in how Americans look at him compared to when the pandemic began. In the first few months of the pandemic, he was a hero to many for providing daily briefings that informed the nation about what New York was doing to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
However, the latest Economist/YouGov poll shows that that glow is largely gone. Three in four Americans (75%) have now heard about the accusations, and it appears the story has impacted their opinions of him.
A majority of Republicans (80%), Democrats (78%), and Independents (77%) have heard at least a little about the scandal that has prompted criticism of his role as Governor. Regular viewers of MSNBC (89%), Fox News (80%), and CNN (85%) are all equally likely to have heard about the accusations. Fox News viewers (45%) are the most likely to say they have heard “a lot” about it, compared to MSNBC (39%) and CNN viewers (30%).
Strongest criticism of Cuomo has emerged from his own party. Among Democrats, favorable ratings for Governor Cuomo have fallen from 71% in April last year to 51% now. At the same time, the number with a negative view has increased from 10% to 31%.
There have been significant shifts among Republicans and Independents too: unfavorable views have increased from 54% to 71% among the GOP and from 32% to 59% among Independents.
Only a quarter of all US adults now hold a positive view of the New York governor (26%), down from 46% in April. Half (50%) now have a negative view. In Cuomo’s own corner of America – the Northeast – this figure is higher still, at 52%, although Northeasterners are also more likely to report a favorable opinion of the governor (37%) than Americans in general.
Methodology: The Economist survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,500 US Adult Citizens interviewed online between February 19 - 22, 2021. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the US Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all US citizens. The margin of error is approximately 2.7% for the overall sample