Most New Yorkers support athletes kneeling during the national anthem, a new Siena College poll found.
Buffalo Bills players kneel during the national anthem before the team faced the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. A new poll from Siena College found that most New Yorkers support athletes taking a knee during the song. (Dale Zanine/USA Today Sports)

President Donald Trump’s fellow New Yorkers do not agree with his stance on athletes kneeling during the national anthem, a new poll from Siena College found.

 

The Albany-based school surveyed 789 registered voters on a number of issues and discovered that 60 percent of respondents support the First Amendment rights of professional athletes to kneel during the national anthem.

 

The gesture began last year when then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick remained seated during “The Star-Spangled Banner” in protest of racial discrimination and police brutality. A few weeks later, he and safety Eric Reid began kneeling during the song.

 

This season, that symbolism gained momentum — and drew the ire of the president and Americans alike — as players and other staffers across the NFL knelt in solidarity.

 

A large part of respondents “say the First Amendment trumps disrespect, and that they support the rights of athletes to kneel during the anthem,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said in the study.

While 38 percent did side with Trump in thinking that the act is disrespectful and “should not happen while they are in uniform,” Greenberg said, that’s where the support of the president ended in the Siena College poll.

Sixty-eight percent view Trump unfavorably, and 77 percent gave him a negative job performance rating, with 63 percent rating his work as “poor.”

“Republicans give Trump good grades on terrorism, natural disasters and jobs,” Greenberg said. “They are divided on Korea and negative on working with Congress.”

Comparatively, the pollster added that at least 78 percent of Democrats and 58 percent of independents “give the president negative grades on all the issues. Trump’s a ‘red’ native son from a ‘blue’ state,”  he said.

For the second month in a row, Gov. Andrew Cuomo saw a slight rise in favorability, and 52 percent of voters would reelect him to a third term in office, while 41 percent prefer “someone else.”