Latimer, Cohen Locked in Tight Race, Siena College Poll Shows

Latimer is polling three points over Cohen, according to the poll results.

Assemblyman George Latimer, a democrat, and Republican Bob Cohen are in a “neck-and-neck” New York State Senate race, according to a State Senate poll released by the Siena College Research Institute on Wednesday. The two are vying for retiring 37th District Senator Suzi Oppenheimer’s seat.

According to the poll, Latimer has the support of 44 percent of likely voters, compared to Cohen with 41 percent.  Both candidates did well with voters of their own parties.

The Siena poll also found that in the 55th Senate District, currently held by retiring James Alesi, Republican Assemblyman Sean Hanna has a 47-39 percent lead over Democrat Ted O’Brien among likely voters.

“These two open seats – one each currently held by a Republican and a Democrat – are seen by both parties as important races in determining whether the State Senate will have more Rs or Ds among its 63 members next year,” said Siena pollster Steven Greenberg. Republicans currently have a 33-29 seat advantage in the Senate.

The poll also found that job creation and property taxes proved to be the two most important issues for 37th District voters. Voters also viewed Gov. Andrew Cuomo favorably. The favorability ratings of President Barack Obama and candidate Mitt Romney were nearly even in the district.

Details from the Siena College Research Institute:

37th SD – Westchester County – George Latimer (D) vs. Bob Cohen (R)

Latimer has the support of 44 percent of likely voters and Cohen has the support of 41 percent. Both candidates do well with voters of their own party, Latimer with the support of 76 percent of Democrats and Cohen has the support of 75 percent of Republicans. Independents currently side with Cohen by a 43-34 percent margin. Cohen leads among men by five points, while Latimer has an 11-point lead with women. Latimer has a 12-point lead in the portion of the district that remains the same as the current district (59 percent of likely voters), while Cohen leads by nine points in the area new to the senate district.

Cohen is viewed favorably by 31 percent of voters and unfavorably by 23 percent. Latimer’s favorability rating is 30-29 percent. Both candidates are unknown to more than 40 percent of likely voters. Voters have a decidedly unfavorable view of the State Senate by a 51-35 percent margin, are they are virtually evenly divided on whether they want to see the Democrats or Republicans control the Senate.

The race for President within this Senate district is as tight as it can be with Romney having the support of 48 percent of voters and Obama being supported by 47 percent. Independents side with Romney by 14 points.

Voters say that Cohen will be better than Latimer on property taxes (44-35 percent), state budget (44-35 percent), state taxes (43-36 percent) and job creation (39-36 percent), four of the five most important issues for voters. They give Latimer the edge on health care (43-36 percent) and education (41-36 percent), and rate the two virtually evenly on ethics reform and representing the community in Albany.

“While this district has a significant Democratic enrollment edge, likely voters are closely divided on which party they want to control the Senate, on the favorability ratings of both Obama and Romney and their choice in the presidential election,” Greenberg said. “In light of that, it’s not particularly surprising to see a hotly contested Senate race also dividing voters nearly down the middle. Cohen has the better favorability rating, while Latimer has an early, narrow three point edge. It won’t be surprising if this stays close until the end.”

Read the full Siena Poll report in the PDF attached to this article. 

Harold1968 October 05, 2012 at 02:43 AM
Harold, Let me try to explain this again using an example...if there were 100 registered voters in Westchester then 34 of them would be Republicans and 66 would be Democrats. Based on the poll, 44 of the people currently support Latimer and 41 of the people currently support Cohen. This means that Democrats are supporting Bob Cohen. They've obviously looked past his slight of hand, seen his anti-taxpayer voting record, and have had enough of him jacking up their taxes to support his union cronies. This is pretty simple - if you want your taxes (which are already the highest in the country) to go even higher then vote for Latimer. I've had enough and I'm voting for Bob Cohen.
Harold1968 October 09, 2012 at 04:16 PM
This tight race means that even Democratic taxpayers are seeing through the anti-taxpayer record of Latimer. Democrats outnumber Republicans 2-1 in Westchester and yet the race is basically even! Welcome Westchester Democrats who are done paying the highest taxes in the country because of George Latimer! Not only did he vote against pension reform and the tax cap, he actually REMOVED the property tax cap in New Rochelle so the compensation of his union masters can continue to skyrocket! Watch what he does - not what he says. He can dance around his record all he wants - but it's still his record. It's simple - if you want higher taxes then vote for Latimer - otherwise vote for Bob Cohen.
Billy October 11, 2012 at 11:30 AM
HR, the poll has 15% undecided and was taken before Obama bombed last week in the debate so I'm not worried at all. Bob Cohen is the guy we need in Albany. Latimer on the other hand has supported too many taxes over the years and now the teacher's union is out swinging for him. Do I need continue?
Susan H. November 04, 2012 at 09:51 PM
...smiles sounds like Harold is on the Cohen payroll...May i remind you Harold that George Latimer also pays property taxes in Westchester County and has for years lived in the same home, in the same district AND was able to freeze taxes for three years while in the County Legislature. I can assure you that in this day and age where other areas are seeing huge tax jumps each year (and not over the cumulative 13 years which Mr Cohen has combined in an attempt to misrepresent Mr Latimers record), Mr Latimer has consistantly tried his best for the people of HIS community. I have personally witnessed 13 years of Mr. Latimer proving to the people whom he represents that he IS there for them. On the ground level, personal basis of serving, George Latimer actually spends time with the people he represents, distributing food, going door to door on a regular basis and not just at election times. He is approachable by all and has proven his ability to manuver successfully on a bi-partisian level. I cannot imagine a world without caring men and women like George Latimer. I also cannot imagine anyone buying into Mr Cohen's smoke and mirrors million dollar campaign. I am so hoping that on election day the good voters of this district remember our forefathers dream...of the PEOPLE, by the PEOPLE and FOR THE PEOPLE and cast their vote for the only man who has PROVEN for more then 13 years of dedicated public service that he BELIEVES in the PEOPLE...George Latimer.
Billy November 05, 2012 at 10:25 PM
The problem is Latimer won't do anything about our taxes, except maybe to vote to increase them. He talks & talks & talks some more but nothing gets done. It's great to be for mandate relief, but if you offer nothing then its meaningless which is what George offers. We need someone who'll actually propose & vote on mandate reform & the only person in the election that'll do that is Bob Cohen and that's why I'm voting for him. We don't need more lip service from the career politican George Latimer. What has he done for use lately?


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