Thursday, July 2, 2009

State of the Race: New Jersey Governor (7/1/09)

What is this? A presidential race? Another day brings another new poll in the New Jersey gubernatorial race. There's no real news here other than the fact that Chris Christie is below the 50% mark against Jon Corzine for the first time since his Republican primary victory on June 2. But I'm not reading too much into that. For one thing, Fairleigh Dickinson, if you look across the full list of polls conducted in this race since the first of the year, has been an outlier in terms of the number of undecideds that are revealed in each poll. There's no reason to doubt the FDU results, but it is clear that both Christie's numbers in this poll and the undecided proportion of the responses are different from what we've witnessed in the most recent polling of the race in the Garden state. Oddly enough, Corzine's numbers are fairly close to where they have been in other polls.

Does that mean Christie is being undervalued or that there is some evidence of the "Democrats and independents will come home to Corzine in November" hypothesis in this undecided figure? I'd have to say the former. FDU's final poll of the presidential race in New Jersey last year had Obama up 18 points with about a week to go (which wasn't too far off), but with 10% still undecided. That's a pretty substantial number of undecideds that late in any presidential race, much less 2008 (in a blue state). No other polling organization covering the New Jersey race (other than Strategic Vision) had anything approaching that high a number that late in the contest.

In other words, despite the low total in this most recent poll from Fairleigh Dickinson, Chris Christie is likely still at or above that magic 50% mark. And just for the sake of comparison, the Republican challenger's weighted average only dropped by two tenths of a point from yesterday's update.

Recent Posts:
Could Open Primaries Actually Help the GOP in 2012?

Did Democratic Superdelegates Write Their Own Epitaph?

State of the Race: New Jersey (6/30/09)


Robert said...

Any polls in on the Alaska gubernatorial election? What do you make of today's surprise announcement? Does this allow her to focus on the 2012 election or is there another shoe to drop. The "lame duck/ not politics as usual" explanation sounds more like a quitter or someone trying to duck an incoming round.

Jack said...

Andrea Mitchell: she's done with politics.

Cillizza: She's running for president.

Who knows. I'll say this: To my untrained political senses, getting out after her term made sense if she's running for president. Getting out now doesn't.

Anyone have a link to the press conference (transcript or video are fine)? One of the quotes from the press conference, quoted in the CQ story struck me as surprisingly ineloquent for a prominent governor ... oh.

Jack said...

Alright. Text of press conference.

Video and text of part of the press conference.

Various links.

Robert said...

The press conference seems rather rushed and ineffective, better than Sanford's negative standard but not alot better. Very strange. It was almost like "You won't have Sarah Palin to kick around any more!" I agree with you, Jack, that this doesn't make much sense for the 2012 race, but it could put her in a position to run in 2016 against Hilary. Now that would be a race!