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Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Garden State deadlock 

The new Quinnipiac University poll, released a couple of hours ago, suggests that New Jersey is very close. Bush and Kerry are tied among "likely voters," and Kerry's lead among registered voters has diminished to four points. These results are similar to the Star-Ledger and SurveyUSA polls released last week.

The internal results show conflicting signals. Only 45% of New Jersey voters approve of the job Bush is doing, and 55% says that it was a mistake to invade Iraq. Nevertheless, Bush leads Kerry 54-37 per cent in the "acts like a leader category," and New Jersey voters believe 2-1 that Bush is doing a better job of explaining what he will do as president. Not surprisingly, therefore, the election is about Bush, not Kerry: 81% of Bush's backers say they are supporting him as opposed to rejecting Kerry, whereas 61% of prospective Kerry voters are "voting more against Bush."

Here's the rest of it from the Quinnipiac site:
Given four choices, 30 percent of New Jersey voters list terrorism as the most important issue in the presidential race, followed by 25 percent who list the economy, 24 percent who list the situation in Iraq and 16 percent who list health care. This is the first time terrorism has been the top concern in any Quinnipiac University poll.


Asked which candidate would do a better job on these issues New Jersey voters say:
55 - 38 percent that Bush would do a better job on terrorism;
50 - 44 percent that Kerry would do a better job on the economy;
49 - 44 percent that Bush would do a better job on Iraq;
55 - 36 percent that Kerry would do a better job on health care.

Only 2 percent of New Jersey voters say the U.S. economy is 'excellent,' while 38 percent say it is 'good;' 39 percent say it is 'not so good,' and 20 percent say it is 'poor.'

As I've written before, New Jersey will almost certainly break for Kerry in the end. But if it doesn't, the election is over.

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