82% of New Yorkers say migrant influx is serious problem, poll shows

Bags containing a pillow, towel, and bed sheets are placed on cots inside the dormitory tent...
Bags containing a pillow, towel, and bed sheets are placed on cots inside the dormitory tent during a media tour of a shelter New York City is setting up to house up to 1,000 migrants in the Queens borough of New York, Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2023.(Mary Altaffer | AP)
Published: Aug. 22, 2023 at 11:24 AM EDT
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LOUDONVILLE, New York (WWNY) - The vast majority of New Yorkers say the recent influx of migrants is a serious problem and more than half say the problem is very serious.

“New Yorkers — including huge majorities of Democrats, Republicans, independents, upstaters and downstaters — overwhelmingly say that the recent influx of migrants to New York is a serious problem for the state,” said Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg.

“However,” he said, “that’s where partisan agreement ends. A plurality of Democrats says that migrants resettling in New York over the last two decades has been a benefit. But a majority of independents and two-thirds of Republicans say that migrant resettlement has been a burden to the state.”

In a recent survey, 82% of New York voters said the migrant influx was serious and 54% called it very serious.

By a 46-32% margin, voters say that migrants resettling in New York over the last 20 or so years has been a burden and not a benefit to the state.

Fifty-eight percent say New Yorkers have already done enough and should now work to slow the flow, rather than accepting new migrants and working to assimilate them into the state.

Voters also weighed in on politics.

President Joe Biden leads former President Donald Trump in New York but 13 points, 47-34%, down from a 22-point lead in June. Trump continues to have support from three-quarters of Republicans and Biden from three-quarters of Democrats. Independents side with Trump by nine points.

“For the first time in a Siena College poll,” Greenberg said, “more New Yorkers now view Biden unfavorably, 50%, than view him favorably, 46%. His job approval rating, 47-50%, is little changed from June and remains underwater.”

Seventy percent of Democrats view Biden favorably, 71% approve of the job he’s doing, and 74% would vote for him over Trump.

“However, only 47% of Democrats want to see Biden as their party’s nominee next year, while 46% would prefer another Democrat,” Greenberg said.

Other takeaways from the poll:

- Three-quarters of Democrats think Trump should have been indicted on both federal cases – Mar-a- Lago documents and trying to overturn the 2020 election – as do a plurality of independents. Two-thirds of Republicans say he should not have been indicted in either case.

- If Trump goes to trial in federal courts, 70% of Democrats, 58% of Republicans, and 54% of independents want them televised.

- Trump has a 37-56% favorability rating, up from 33-61% in June. He continues to dominate the primary field, with 64% of Republicans saying they would vote for him in the 2024 presidential primary, while 27% prefer someone else.

- New Yorkers are divided on whether Biden should face a House impeachment inquiry for his involvement in alleged corrupt business dealings by his son. Three-quarters of Republicans, joined by most independents, say he should, while two-thirds of Democrats say he should not.

- Gov. Kathy Hochul has a 40-46% favorability rating, down from 42-43% in June. Her job approval rating stands at 46-46%, down from 48-44% in June, and 56-36% in January. “Hochul’s job approval rating has fallen in five consecutive Siena College polls since her highest ever approval in January, when she was 20 points positive, to now her lowest ever approval,” Greenberg said.