New Jersey: Not Loving the Choices

Democrat Jon Corzine and Republican Chris Christie take turns holding slim leads in the latest polls in the New Jersey governor's race. According to ...
by | October 16, 2009

Christie Democrat Jon Corzine and Republican Chris Christie take turns holding slim leads in the latest polls in the New Jersey governor's race.

According to a New York Times poll, Corzine leads 40 to 37 among likely voters, with independent Chris Daggett trailing at 14. As in other polls, Christie (pictured) does better among likely voters than registered voters as a whole, demonstrating a lack of enthusiasm for Corzine in the Democratic-leaning state.

But the decision facing New Jersey voters is startlingly bleak, the poll found. They do not like Mr. Corzine, think he has done a poor job and have little faith that he will revive the state's ailing economy or gain control of soaring property taxes, the two issues they say they care about the most.

But the electorate is just as skeptical of Mr. Christie, who has been hit with a blizzard of Mr. Corzine's attack ads but has failed to get across a positive message. Most voters think he has not explained his positions, and among those who offer an opinion of him, twice as many dislike him as like him. That suggests that Mr. Corzine's TV ad campaign is working; he has spent more than $10 million, much of it on ads attacking Mr. Christie.

SurveyUSA puts the race at 40-39, advantage Christie, with Daggett taking 18 percent. In that poll, Daggett is the only candidate with any upward momentum.

Corzine still looks to me unlikely to break 40 percent. The question then is whether Daggett's support can hold or even grow, cutting Christie's support enough to grant Corzine a second term.

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