KEAN POLL: BOOKER WAY IN FRONT; CHRISTIE APPROVAL RATING AT 70 PERCENT; LITTLE SUPPORT FOR SNOWDEN

On June 18, 2013 Pulse Opinion Research conducted a survey of 1000 likely voters in New Jersey. Margin of Sampling Error, +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

How would you rate the job Barack Obama has been doing as President…

32% Strongly approve
27% Somewhat approve
7% Somewhat disapprove
33% Strongly disapprove
1% Not sure

How would you rate the job Chris Christie has been doing as Governor… do you strongly approve, somewhat approve, somewhat disapprove, or strongly disapprove of the job he’s been doing?

37% Strongly approve
33% Somewhat approve
17% Somewhat disapprove
12% Strongly disapprove
1% Not sure

(Answered by 366 Democratic Voters) Looking ahead to the Democratic Primary for the United States senate in 2016, suppose you had a a choice between Cory Booker, Frank Pallone, Jr., Rush Holt, and Sheila Oliver. If the Democratic Primary were held today for whom would you vote?

49% Booker
6% Pallone, Jr.
9% Holt
9% Oliver
5% Some other candidate
22% Not sure

(Answered by 321 Republican Voters) Looking ahead to the Republican Primary for United States senate in 2016, suppose you had a choice between Steve Lonegan and Alieta Eck. If the Republican Primary were held today for whom would you vote?

45% Lonegan
15% Eck
12% Some other candidate
29% Not sure

If the election for governor of New Jersey were held today, would you vote for Republican Chris Christie or Democrat Barbara Buono?

58% Christie
28% Buono
6% Some other candidate
8% Not sure

How closely are you following political campaigns for state Assembly and state Senate?

23% Very closely
31% Somewhat closely
34% Not very closely
9% Not at closely
2% Not sure

If a candidate for state Assembly or state Senate has the support of Governor Christie, would you be more likely to vote for that candidate, less likely to vote for that candidate or would it have no impact on your vote?

30% More likely
22% Less likely
46% It would have no impact
2% Not sure

Do you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree or strongly disagree with Governor Christie’s decision to hold a special election for Senator Lautenberg’s seat before the general election in November?

24% Strongly agree
21% Somewhat agree
19% Somewhat disagree
28% Strongly disagree
8% Not sure

Compared with last year, do you think New Jersey is headed in the right direction, headed in the wrong direction, or are things about the same?

38% Headed in the right direction
18% Headed in the wrong direction
41% About the same
3% Not sure

When it comes to responding to extreme weather is the state better prepared than last year, less prepared than last year or is their level of preparedness about the same?

49% Better prepared
7% Less prepared
39% About the same
4% Not sure

Should police officers in New Jersey be allowed to seize cell phones after car accidents to see if drivers were texting or talking while driving?

57% Yes
33% No
11% Not sure

Moving to national issues, has the United States government gone too far, not far enough, or has it struck the proper balance in monitoring phone and internet data for clues about possible terrorist plots?

36% Government has gone too far
15% Government has not gone far enough
40% Government has struck a proper balance between privacy and security
9% Not sure

Edward Snowden, a former employee of a government contractor, has admitted to leaking information about National Security Agency phone and email surveillance programs. Do you admire what he did, do you think what he did was wrong or is it too early to tell?

16% You admire what he did
41% You believe what he did was wrong
39% It’s too early to tell
3% Not sure

UNION TOWNSHIP – Newark Mayor Cory Booker commands a huge lead in the race for the Democratic Party’s U.S. Senate nomination, while Governor Chris Christie continues to pile up impressive approval ratings, according to the latest NJ Speaks / Kean University poll.

The poll, which surveyed 1,000 likely voters and was conducted on June 18, also found that a plurality of voters agree with Christie’s decision to hold a special election for the U.S. Senate in October, ahead of November’s general election.

Of 366 self-identified Democrats surveyed in the poll, 49 percent said they would support Booker if the primary were held today. Booker’s three main rivals trailed far behind: U.S. Representative Rush Holt and Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver garnered 9 percent each, while Representative Frank Pallone Jr. won the support of 6 percent. Five percent said they preferred some other candidate, while 22 percent said they were not sure.

Seventy percent of all respondents said they approved of Christie’s performance. That figure, while high, is slightly lower than a NJ Speaks / Kean University poll taken in January, just two months after Superstorm Sandy. That poll put Christie’s approval rating at 78 percent.

“No political figure can maintain an approval rating of nearly 80 percent,” said Dr. Terry Golway, director of the Kean University Center for History, Politics, and Policy. “What’s astounding about Governor Christie is that he continues to enjoy record-high approval ratings across the board. These figures are the stuff of political fantasies, and yet they are reality for Chris Christie.”

Approval ratings do not necessarily translated into electoral support. In a head-to-head matchup with Democratic gubernatorial candidate Barbara Buono, Christie had the support of 58 percent of respondents, compared with 28 percent for the Democrat.

“Fifty-eight percent isn’t 70 percent,” said Dr. Golway, “but it’s still pretty darn good.”

Republicans around the state are hoping that the Governor’s popularity will translate into big gains for Republican candidates for Assembly and Senate. The Kean poll discovered, however, that 46 percent of respondents said that the Governor’s endorsement of a legislative candidate would have no impact on their vote. Thirty percent said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate with Christie’s approval, while 22 percent said Christie’s endorsement would make it less likely they would vote for a legislative candidate.

Fifty-four percent of respondents said they were following the legislative campaigns closely or very closely.

On national issues, 41 percent of respondents said the actions of Edward Snowden, who leaked information about a government surveillance program, were wrong. Thirty-nine percent said it was too early to tell, while 16 percent admired what he did.

Forty percent of respondents said that the U.S. government has maintained a proper balance between privacy and security. But 36 percent said that government has gone too far, while 15 percent believe that government has not gone far enough.