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Cuomo and de Blasio Not Working In Best Interests of New Yorkers, Poll Says

By Jeff Mays | September 17, 2015 6:09pm

MIDTOWN — The feud between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio is real and the pair are not working together for the best interests of the public, according to the results of a Quinnipiac University poll.

New York State voters, by a margin of 57 percent to 15 percent, believe that the feuding leaders are not "effectively working together for the public good." New York City voters by a margin of 61 percent to 21 percent feel the same.

“The squabble between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio isn’t just media hype; it’s real, voters say, and it's harmful to everyone in the state,” Maurice Carroll, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, said in a statement.

The long-running feud boiled over when de Blasio accused Cuomo of being a vindictive politician who sabotaged the city's legislative Albany agenda during the last session.

Cuomo has repeatedly contradicted de Blasio on issues such as regulating e-hail car service Uber and appeared to criticize the city's response to the deadliest outbreak of Legionnaires' disease.

Cuomo and de Blasio did not appear together throughout the Legionnaires' outbreak in the South Bronx and even held dueling press conferences at the height of the epidemic where they distributed contradictory information.

Among the voters who believe there is a feud, 78 percent say that it is harmful to the state versus 20 percent who say it is not.

"They don't want to be seen together in public and they have made their distaste for one another very clear," said Kenneth Sherrill, professor emeritus of political science at Hunter College.

"At the moment we have a governor who has a sadistic streak and a mayor who seems to be encouraging it," Sherrill added. "It's unfortunate that people's every day lives get affected by this bickering."

De Blasio is also seen by voters as being a big loser in the feud. Sixty-one percent of voters think Cuomo is winning compared to 9 percent who think de Blasio is.

Thirty-five percent of voters felt de Blasio didn't work hard enough to convince state legislators to enact the city's agenda versus 32 percent who felt Cuomo undermined the mayor's efforts.

"Every mayor of New York City has a power disadvantage vis-á-vis the governor. Every time mayors and governors have feuded going back 50 years the city loses," said Sherrill. "The city is a creature of the state that depends on the state budgetarily and there is little home rule."

Cuomo, speaking after an event in Harlem, called the perception of the feud "irrelevant," according to media reports, and said he would not let a relationship issue affect how he governs the state.

Asked about the poll, de Blasio spokeswoman Amy Spitalnick, highlighted what the administration felt were some of its accomplishments and refused to back down from de Blasio's comments about Cuomo.

"If there are ways to work productively with this governor, we will do so," Spitalnick said. "If New York City is getting the short end of the stick from the state, we will continue to call that out."