Here’s the latest news today out of New Jersey courtesy of Monmouth University’s latest poll:
Gov. Phil Murphy earns a solid majority job approval rating in the latest Monmouth (“Mon-muth”) University Poll of New Jersey residents, although the number of voters who are ready to endorse a second term for him falls just below the majority mark. Heading into his reelection bid this fall, Murphy is running slightly behind his predecessor on some key metrics. The poll also finds net positive ratings for other Democratic officeholders, including the U.S. President, the state’s two U.S. Senators, and the New Jersey legislature.
Murphy earns a 57% approve and 35% disapprove rating from New Jersey residents for the overall job he is doing as governor. This is down from his 71% approve and 21% disapprove rating last year, as the coronavirus pandemic was in its early stages. However, it remains significantly better than his prior job ratings, which were more evenly divided. The governor’s job approval number stands at 88% among Democrats (similar to 92% in April 2020), 48% among independents (down from 69% last year), and 21% among Republicans (down from 45% last year).
“Murphy has a pretty strong job rating going into his reelection bid. However, New Jersey voters are a fickle lot and a good number will sit on the fence until we get closer to the fall campaign in case things go south for the state,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.
Looking ahead to November’s election, 48% say Murphy should be reelected while 43% feel it is time to have someone else in office. Support for the incumbent’s reelection stands at 77% among Democrats, 39% among independents, and 15% among Republicans. For context, when Chris Christie ran for reelection in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, he had an even higher job rating than Murphy does now, but his reelect number was also a few points lower than his job rating benchmark. Specifically, Murphy’s predecessor held a 63% job approval rating and 56% support for reelection in April 2013. Christie ended up winning a second term that year with 60% of the votes cast.
A somewhat greater number of New Jerseyans see Murphy as being more concerned about governing the state (49%) than he is about his own political future (41%). This is a shift from polls taken two years ago, when residents were somewhat more likely to see Murphy as being primarily concerned with his political career. When Christie ran for reelection, 44% said he was more concerned about the state and 38% said he was more concerned about his own future (Sept. 2013). Those numbers flipped right after the election, though, and the gap continued to widen throughout his second term. Christie left office with just 14% saying he was more concerned about the state and 79% saying he was more concerned about himself (July 2017).
Let’s keep up the momentum and keep Murphy in office. Click people to donate and get involved with Murphy’s re-election campaign and the New Jersey Democratic Party: