Recent poll shows Grimm with 19-point lead over Recchia
Friday's poll showed huge lead just before Election Day
The topsy-turvy race between Republican U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm and his Democratic opponent, Domenic Recchia, which has seen everything from a 20-count federal indictment against the incumbent to the challenger being lampooned by Jon Stewart on “The Daily Show,” was hit with another bombshell on Friday when the results of the latest NY1/Capital New York/Siena College poll were released.
The Oct. 31 poll showed that Grimm, who is scheduled to stand trial in February on fraud, tax evasion, perjury and other charges, had a 19-point lead over Recchia as the grueling campaign entered its final weekend before Election Day.
Grimm leads Recchia 53-34 percent, up significantly from a narrow 44-40 percent lead in a poll conducted by NY1/Capital New York/Siena College two months ago. Green Party candidate Henry Bardel had 5 percent in the latest poll.
“Early on, this race looked like it was going to be one of the closest in the state, a former Democratic City Council member taking on an embattled incumbent Republican under federal indictment in a district that is, at least by enrollment, dominated by Democrats,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said in a statement.
“That no longer seems to be the case, as Grimm has taken a commanding 19-point lead into the final days of the campaign,” Greenberg added.
Recchia, who represented Coney Island, Gravesend and parts of Bensonhurst in the council, does lead Grimm in the Brooklyn portion of the 11th Congressional District (Southwest Brooklyn-Staten Island), but the lead is down from 7 points in September to 3 points now. Grimm has extended his lead on Staten Island, which accounts for more than two-thirds of district’s voters, from 9 to 28 points.
Recchia’s campaign was quick to dismiss the poll.
“The only poll that matters is on Election Day. People here are ready for change. Michael Grimm’s indictment has made Staten Island a national embarrassment, and the people of Staten Island and Brooklyn are ready for a congressman who spends more time fighting for his constituents than fighting his criminal charges in court,” Campaign Manager Ashleigh Owens said.
Owens also blasted the pollster. “Siena’s polling and methodology across the state and in this district in recent years has been notoriously inaccurate and we have no reason to believe this is any different,” she said.
Recchia was the target of Jon Stewart’s biting wit on “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” last month after the challenger was caught on camera apparently having trouble answering questions from NY1 political reporter Courtney Gross about a U.S. trade agreement and then bragging that his role in setting up an international student exchange program during his days as a member of a local community school board gave him credentials to understand international issues in Congress.
Grimm, meanwhile, is happy with the poll results, but is taking no chances, according to sources inside his campaign. One source told the Brooklyn Eagle that Grimm still expects a close vote on Election Day and is going all-out to try to win.
Earlier version of article contained two different spellings of Jon Stewart’s first name. We regret the error.
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