Hochul, Collins Compete for Women Voters

12:35 PM, Oct 26, 2012   |    comments
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BUFFALO, NY - One week from this coming Tuesday, we'll all be heading to the polls.

This Election Day features a Congressional race that many here and across the nation are quite interested in. It's the 27th District race between incumbent Democrat Kathy Hochul and Republican Chris Collins.

This is a new district, as congressional lines were re-drawn earlier this year.

Whoever wins the district will represent all of Orleans, Genesee, Wyoming, and Livingston counties, the western part of Ontario County, most of Erie and Niagara counties and parts of Monroe County.

The district excludes Buffalo, parts of Amherst, the City and Town of Tonawanda, North Tonawanda, Grand Island, Niagara Falls, Cheektowaga, West Seneca, and Lackawanna.

In our recent 2 On Your Side, Buffalo News, Siena College poll, it showed both Collins and Hochul locked in a dead heat at 47 percent a piece.

With the slim separation, both campaigns are airing ads focused on female voters. In that respect, our poll showed Hochul with a five percentage point edge among women.

But six percent of female voters polled are undecided. Both ads target women, who, political experts say usually vote for democrats. Both campaigns know that women in this election could possibly be the deciding factor in the race.

Experts say like in many past races, women have been the last to decide who they want to vote for.

"Women's issues and their rights were important, but it seemed when they have to make a decision between women's rights and economic issues, they tend to favor economic issues," said Mayra Velez, a political science professor at Buffalo State.

And with an uncertain economy this could spell trouble for the incumbent in the race.

Evidence of this comes from our poll, which says 18 percent of women compared to 11 percent of men say they're unsure if they like Hochul. The separation is much slimmer for Collins.

"I think when women in this district see the fact that Chris Collins is someone that has a record of outsourcing manufacturing overseas, of letting workers go in western New York that's going to be an issue they identify with," said Frank Thomas, a Hochul spokesperson.







Chris Grant, a political adviser for the Collins campaign says, "the best way to win over voters and especially women voters, is to talk to them about the issues that they care the most about."

Velez says negative ads resonate with female voters, and that both campaigns are using them.

"Human beings in the world have a bias to remember negative things compared to remembering positive things," and that, "from this bias women tend to have this highest bias that we remember more negative information than men."


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