Sixty percent of New Yorkers say Gov. Andrew Cuomo did something wrong in handling COVID-19 nursing home deaths and 40 percent believe he shouldn’t be reelected to a fourth term, according to a Marist Poll released Tuesday.

More than 15,000 people have died in New York state’s nursing homes and long-term care facilities from COVID-19, but as recently as last month, the state reported only 8,500 deaths. A top aide to Cuomo in early February told Democratic lawmakers that the state withheld the death toll out of fear that the true numbers would be “used against us” by federal prosecutors.

Republicans have called for investigations and subpoenas and some Democrats have referred to Cuomo’s conduct as criminal.

Cuomo said his administration “made the mistake in creating the void of information on nursing home deaths” and that a toxic political environment contributed to the backlash against his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Marist poll found that just 19 percent of adults believe Cuomo has done something illegal in his handling of nursing homes during the pandemic while 27 percent think he has done nothing wrong.

Cuomo’s performance numbers have dipped, though. The poll found that 49 percent of New Yorkers approve of Cuomo’s job performance, down from 66 percent in July, while 42 percent say he is doing an excellent job, down from 60 percent in July.

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