A Siena/Newsday/News 12 Long Island poll released tonight has very good news for Sen. Jack Martins and his fellow Republicans, showing the incumbent Nassau County lawmaker leading his Democratic challenger, businessman Adam Haber, by a whopping 25 percentage points.

“Less than five weeks until Election Day and Martins sits in a very strong position – a 25-point lead, holding 82 percent of Republicans, winning among independents nearly two-to-one and picking up the support of one-third of Democrats,” said Siena pollster Steven Greenberg. “He leads by 30 points with men and 20 points with women, and even has the support of 40 percent of Cuomo voters.”

“…If Haber hopes to make this race competitive, he’s going to need to find a way to bring Democrats home and appeal to those voters who support Cuomo but also favor Martins. A lot of work in five weeks.”

Martins is viewed favorably by more than half the voters polled, and unfavorably by only 14 percent, Greenberg noted. While Haber is unknown to half the voters in the 7th SD – despite the fact that he ran a failed campaign for Nassau County executive last year, losing to former County Executive Tom Suozzi in the Democratic primary – and is viewed unfavorably by nearly as many voters as view him favorably.

This strong showing by Martins is not being experienced by the man at the top of the GOP ballot this fall, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, who is trailing the Democratic governor by 29 percentage points.

Martins arguably benfitted from the recent implosion of Democratic state Senate candidate Dave Denenberg in the adjacent 8th SD. Denenberg was the Democrats’ top chance of a pick-up in the race for the district that was once held by former GOP Sen. Chuck Fuschillo, but then he was forced to fold his campaign after his former law firm partners filed a lawsuit accusing him of billing a client for $2 million worth of legal services that were never actually delivered.

Denenberg’s name will remain on the November ballot, as Democrats abandoned their plan to nominate him for a judgeship and run a replacement candidate in his place. But he’s not actively campaigning, and hasn’t even been seeen attending Nassau County Legislature meetings for his current job. His GOP legislative colleague, Michael Venditto, is pretty much guaranteed a win, which frees up resources the GOP has planned to spend to defend this seat that they can use to defend Martins – not that he appears to need much defending, according to this poll.

The Republicans are, not surprisingly, very happy about this poll, which GOP Leader Dean Skelos called “very strong evidence that Republicans are well on their way to winning a clear majority in the State Senate.”

“Jack Martins is a smart and effective legislator for the people, and he deserves to be re-elected to the Senate,” Skelos continued.

“…His opponent, who has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own money and gotten nowhere, is seeking to join the same New York City-dominated conference that enacted the job-killing MTA payroll tax, took the STAR rebate checks away from seniors and homeowners, and shifted school aid to New York City at Long Island’s expense.”

“These results show Long Island residents want bipartisanship and balance, not all-Democrat, all-New York City rule – with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio calling all the shots.”

The Democrats, meanwhile, are doing damage control, basically noting that a poll is just a snapshot in time, and there is just over a month remaining in the campaign for Haber to raise his name recognition and close the gap between him and Martins. The Haber campaign also pointed out that the candidate just went onto the air with his first ad this week – after the poll was already out of the field.

“Campaign season is just getting started, as proven by the fact that more than half of voters have not settled on a choice as of yet,” said Haber campaign spokesman Jacob Tugendrajch. “While Adam Haber’s advertising is just beginning, Jack Martins and his extremist GOP allies have been pouring money into this district trying to distract from the fact that he has consistently voted against women’s rights and health, supported higher taxes and fees and blocked all ethics reforms to clean up Albany. As TV ads and direct mail balance out over the next month, Nassau voters will see that Adam Haber’s message of lower taxes, women’s rights and fully funded schools are the clear choice for this district.”

Siena/News 12 LI/Newsday poll on 7th SD race. by liz_benjamin6490