WOODBURY - Voters will head to the polls in three weeks to choose the next Nassau County executive, and the results of a new poll have the current executive holding a clear lead.
A News 12/Newsday/Siena College poll shows that Ed Mangano leads Democratic challenger Tom Suozzi by 17 points.
The poll asked likely voters who they would select if the election for county executive were held today. While 35 percent of responders said they'd pick Suozzi, 52 percent said they'd keep Mangano in office. Another 12 percent said they weren't sure.
READ MORE: Long Island Politics
The poll also asked who would do a better job of keeping taxes under control. The majority, 57 percent, said Ed Mangano would do better. Another 17 percent said Suozzi, while 17 percent said they didn't know.
Newsday Columnist Joye Brown said she's not surprised by the results. "The current county executive came out early, often and strong with a message of, 'I have not raised your taxes in four years,' and he also came out with the message that the other guy, Tom Suozzi, did," Brown said.
News 12 Long Island caught up with both candidates on the campaign trail today. Mangano said the poll numbers reflect what he's hearing on the street. "We're thrilled with the numbers because it reflects what we already know," he said. "There's a stark difference between my four years in office and Tom Suozzi's eight years in office. We ask the voters to look at those two records."
Suozzi said the poll numbers don't always tell the whole story. "The same pollster showed me ahead by 23 points back in 2009, and that race was very close and I lost by 386 votes," he said. "So if anything, these poll results are going to psych me up harder than ever to make sure we win this race."
Voters will choose the next county executive on Nov. 5.