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Ex-Gov. Andrew Cuomo could still play spoiler if he runs as an independent in this year’s governor’s race, according to a new poll released Wednesday.
The former governor opted not to run in a Democratic Party primary for the job from which he resigned under pressure last summer amid nearly a dozen accusations of sexual harassment – but he could give a Republican in the deeply blue state a fighting chance if he were to appear on the November general election ballot, the poll by Emerson College/The Hill showed.
With Cuomo as an independent option, 33 percent of voters polled would support the Democratic nominee, 33 percent would support the Republican – and 16 percent would support Cuomo, the poll said. Another 18 percent were unsure.
“Support for Cuomo as a third-party candidate grows with age,” Spencer Kimball, executive director of the Emerson College Poll said in a news release.
“20% of voters over 65 would support Cuomo as a third party candidate compared to 9% of those between 18 and 29.”
Gov. Kathy Hochul, Cuomo’s former lieutenant governor, remains the favorite to win a Democratic primary for the seat despite an anemic approval rating of 36 percent, the poll showed.
Some 45 percent of primary voters disapprove of the job Hochul has done since taking the reins of the Empire State – with 47 percent approval from Democrats, 14 percent from Republicans and 33 percent from independents, according to the poll.
Hochul’s $600 million deal for a new Buffalo Bills stadium proved unpopular among those polled, with 67 percent opposed to the deal.
But 45 percent of likely Democratic primary voters said they’d support Hochul while only 12 percent said they’d support moderate Long Island Rep. Tom Suozzi, the poll said. Another 22 percent were still undecided, according to the poll.
On the Republican side, 26 percent of those polled said they’d support frontrunner Rep. Lee Zeldin, while 18 percent said they’d support Andrew Giuliani and 16 percent would support Rob Astorino, the former Westchester County executive.
The poll included 444 likely Democratic voters, 192 likely Republican voters and was conducted May 1, with a margin of error of 3 percentage points.
A spokesman for Cuomo didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from The Post.