LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A new poll from Siena College and Spectrum News shows that Democrat Josh Riley has a lead over Republican Marc Molinaro in New York’s 19th congressional district race. Riley holds a five-point, 46% to 41% lead over Molinaro.

The poll also has Republican Lee Zeldin ahead of Governor Kathy Hochul in the governor’s race. They are separated by one point, with Zeldin ahead 46% to 45%.

According to the poll, Riley is viewed favorably by 28% of voters and unfavorably by 19%, while 53% don’t know him or have no opinion. Molinaro has a negative 26% to 38% favorability rating, while 36% don’t know him or have no opinion.

“First-time candidate Riley has the support of 83% of Democrats and is leading 46 to 40% with independents, offsetting Molinaro’s 78-5% lead with Republicans in this district that has a four-point Democratic enrollment edge and in which President Joe Biden won by four points,” said Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg. “While Molinaro leads with men by eight points, Riley has an 18-point lead with women.”

Democrat Pat Ryan currently holds the 19th congressional district seat which he won by special election in August. Ryan defeated Molinaro for the seat.

Ryan is finishing out Antonio Delgado’s term, who resigned his position after being appointed New York Lieutenant Governor. The district covers mainly the Catskills and mid-Hudson Valley regions. The newly re-drawn district includes all of Columbia, Delaware, Greene, Otsego, Schoharie, Sullivan, and Ulster Counties, and parts of Broome, Dutchess, Montgomery, and Rensselaer Counties.

Ryan is the current Ulster County Executive. He is running in the general election for the U.S. House in New York’s 18th Congressional District in November.

According to the poll, 52% of voters said economic issues are one of their top two issues when deciding who to vote for in November. About 34% said it was number one. That was followed by
threats to our democracy (20% most important), abortion (13%), national gun policies
(6%), crime (6%), healthcare (6%), education (5%), and racial justice (3%).

By a 59% to 28% margin, voters said the country is headed in the wrong direction. Biden has a 44% to 51% favorability rating, while former President Donald Trump has a 37% to 57% favorability rating, said the poll.

“What is clear is that these next five weeks are going to see a lot of two things: the candidates and their supporters campaigning hard, and ads for and against both candidates dominating airwaves and social media,” said Greenberg. “It’s close now and there’s every reason to believe it’s going to stay close to the end.”