ai express – Sen. Bob Menendez, who is currently facing federal indictment, may have name recognition among Democratic Party primary voters in New Jersey. However, he should not anticipate widespread support if he chooses to run for reelection.
According to a recent poll conducted by Fairleigh Dickinson University, Rep. Andy Kim is leading the Democratic race for the nomination for U.S. Senate. The poll revealed that Kim has the support of 32% of likely Democratic primary voters, putting him in the front. On the other hand, New Jersey first lady Tammy Murphy has garnered the support of approximately 20% of likely Democratic primary voters.
Menendez trails behind in third place with only 9% support, while Patricia Campos-Medina garners a mere 8% support.
With 31% of voters still undecided, Kim’s current 12-point lead has the potential to fluctuate as the campaign progresses.
Since she announced her candidacy in November, Murphy has garnered the majority of endorsements from party machine members across the state. However, Kim holds a significant advantage among voters who identify as liberals, with 40% supporting her compared to 19% for Murphy. Similarly, among progressives, Kim maintains a strong lead with 43% support, while Murphy trails at 18%.
Charlie Stile: Is there a growing unease about Tammy Murphy among New Jersey Democratic grassroots? Some party insiders believe so, and they have coined the term “Kim-mentum” to describe the potential shift in support away from the Murphy administration.
Many members of Congress from New Jersey are expressing their support for Tammy Murphy in her Senate bid. They believe that she has the qualities and experience needed to be an effective representative for the state.
A real contest could take shape
According to Dan Cassino, a professor of government and politics at FDU and the director of the poll, winning a primary in New Jersey usually relies on institutional support. However, with Murphy’s decline in popularity, the upcoming election will serve as a test to determine if county organizations still hold the influence to select a candidate.
Voters don’t seem to care about name recognition at this stage. Menendez has a 90% name recognition, while Murphy has 68% and Kim has 52%.
Kim is currently leading the race in terms of favorability. Among Democratic primary voters, 24% strongly approve of him, compared to only 13% who feel the same about Murphy. The disapproval ratings are also significantly lower for Kim, with only 2% disapproving of him, while 14% disapprove of Murphy and a staggering 53% disapprove of Menendez.
According to Democratic primary voters, Kim is considered the most liberal option, with 11% of voters ranking him as such. In contrast, only 5% of voters believe Murphy is the most liberal.
According to Cassino, both candidates are not considered “hard left” and share similar positions on various issues. However, many Democrats perceive a connection between Murphy and the state’s Democratic power brokers, which leads them to view her as more conservative compared to Kim.
Liberals versus moderates
Kim holds a lead among both white and Asian American Democratic primary voters when the support is analyzed by race. On the other hand, Murphy emerges as the preferred choice among Black and Hispanic voters. Interestingly, Menendez and Campos-Medina poll even with or perform better than Kim when it comes to Hispanic voters.
According to Cassino, the main battle is taking place between white liberals, who are predominantly supporting Kim, and moderate Black and Hispanic voters, who are aligning themselves with Murphy. He notes that although Kim has positioned himself as a centrist candidate, liberal voters have embraced him due to their dissatisfaction with the county organizations.
The survey for this poll was conducted by Braun Research of Princeton from Jan. 21 to 28. A total of 504 respondents participated in the survey, which was exclusively conducted in English.