(CNN) - Most New Yorkers don't think state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's possible challenge of Gov. David Paterson would be racially divisive, according to a new poll.
A Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday morning indicates that 8 in ten voters, including three-quarters of black voters, say a Democratic primary challenge by Cuomo, who is white, of Paterson, who is black, would not be racially divisive.
According to the poll, 78 percent of New Yorkers are not impatient with Cuomo's delay of any announcement on his possible plans to challenge Paterson, with the high level of patience consistent among all political and racial groups and in every region of the state.
"Unlike the media, New Yorkers aren't impatient for Attorney General Cuomo to admit he's running for Governor," says Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
The survey indicates that Cuomo leads Paterson 55 to 23 percent among Democrats in a hypothetical primary matchup, with Cuomo ahead 66 to 15 percent among white Democrats and Paterson ahead 42 to 34 percent among black Democrats. But black Democrats rate Cuomo higher on job approval and favorability.
Cuomo has held a very large advantage over Paterson in primary matchups in state polls dating back a year.
Paterson was lieutenant governor when a scandal led to then-Gov. Eliot Spitzer's departure from the office in March 2008. In September, the White House would not confirm or deny a New York Times report that the Obama Administration was urging Paterson to withdraw from the race. But sources told CNN that White House Political Director Patrick Gaspard met with Paterson, one of only two African-American governors, to let him know about the administration's concerns he could not win the governor's race, a problem that could affect races down-ticket.
According to the survey, Cuomo tops former Rep. Rick Lazio, the probable GOP nominee, 57 to 25 percent in a hypothetical general election matchup, while Paterson and Lazio are deadlocked.
The Quinnipiac Univeristy poll was conducted January 27-February 1, wtih 2,182 New York State registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.1 percentage points.
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