New Jersey Poll Shows Governor Candidate Christie Leading Pro-Abortion Corzine
by Steven Ertelt
June 10, 2009
Trenton, NJ (LifeNews.com) — A new poll in New Jersey shows gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie leading pro-abortion Gov. Jon Corzine by percentage points. New Jersey is one of the few states with any meaningful off-year election contests and the results could determine the fate of pro-life legislation in the state.
A new Quinnipiac University poll of likely voters has Christie, a former federal prosecutor, leading the embattled incumbent 50 percent to 40 percent.
They survey indicates Christie’s lead extends to 24 percentage points among unaffiliated voters, when leaners are included.
"Christie has hit the magic 50 percent mark, and if he can hold onto that, of course he wins the election," Clay Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, told AP.
"Don’t count Gov. Corzine out," said Richards. "But he certainly has his work cut out for him."
The poll also contains more bad news for Corzine, who has also upset pro-life advocates with his taxpayer funding for embryonic stem cell research that involves the destruction of human life.
Some 56 percent of New Jersey residents say he doesn’t deserve to be elected and another 52 percent view his personality as too cold and businesslike, not warm and friendly and caring about their needs. The poll found 44 percent also say Corzine isn’t honest and trustworthy.
Quinnipiac conducted the telephone poll of 1,338 registered New Jersey voters between June 3 and June 8, following the June 2 primary election that gave Christie the Republican nomination.
Christie, a former U.S. attorney, defeated pro-life former mayor Steve Lonegan while Corzine won the Democratic primary with 77 percent of the vote against token opposition.
With 97 percent of precincts reporting, Christie led with 55 percent of the vote compared to 42 percent for Lonegan. State Assemblyman Rick Merkt, a Republican who also ran in the race, received three percent.
Lonegan, the former mayor of Bogota, pledged to get behind Christie, telling supporters to help Christie.
Christie, at his victory party on Tuesday night, wasted no time in contrasting himself with Corzine.
I think hes a good man and I think hes well intentioned, but he is simply wrong for this job, Christie said. For the past four years Jon Corzine has made bad choices."
Deal Hudson, a Catholic writer, has commented on the New Jersey race and says it could give hope to pro-life advocates who are still smarting from the election of pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
He said Christie’s lead over Corzine is remarkable in the post-Obama political climate when pro-life candidates, like Christie, are supposed to be passé," he says.
"In New Jersey 42 percent of voters are Catholic, but the Republicans haven’t nominated a Catholic for governor since 1973," Hudson explains. "Whether New Jersey Catholics will rally around a candidate like Christie remains to be seen."
The last Catholic governor of New Jersey was James E. McGreevey who received a majority of the Catholic vote in spite of pro-abortion policy positions.
Hudson says that, while there has been some question about Christie’s pro-life bona fides, he is thoroughly pro-life.
"You might assume from the reputation and recent history of New Jersey politics that there must be something questionable about Christie’s pro-life position that explains his present popularity," Hudson says.
Hudson says the potential general election matchup between Christie and Corzine is huge for the pro-life community.
"Another vulnerability stems from his position on life issues," Hudson explains. "Corzine made headlines a few months ago when New Jersey filed a lawsuit to force Catholic hospitals to perform abortions."
"The election of Chris Christie in 2010 would put a sudden end to all the talk about the need for Republicans to distance themselves from their pro-life constituencies," he concludes.
Christie was nominated in 2001 by President George W. Bush as the U.S. attorney general for the District of New Jersey.
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