The Iraq war is a liability for Republican presidential candidates amongst New Jersey voters, according to a Farleigh Dickinson Public Mind Poll released this morning.
Clinton still has strong negatives in New Jersey, with 33% of New Jersey voters saying that she’s their “lest likely” pick for President, including 73% of Republicans. When voters were given the choice of candidates before being reminded of Iraq and other national issues, 76% of Republicans chose Clinton as their least likely pick. But when a second group was asked the same question after being reminded of national issues, resistance to Clinton softened amongst Republicans, with 69% saying she was their least likely choice.
“This is what Clinton and other Democrats are really counting on,” said FDU professor and survey analyst Dan Cassino. “Even if voters don’t like them personally, they’re hoping that the status quo is bad enough that there will be votes for change.”
Meanwhile, Clinton and Rudy Giuliani remained their parties’ favorites to win the state’s primary, each earning support from 48% of voters from their parties. There was, however, one major change in the Republican presidential field: support for Fred Thompson amongst Republicans plummeted to 4% from 12% in September.
“Republicans were expecting a lot of him, and they seem to have been disappointed,” said Cassino.
President Bush’s approval rating in New Jersey is 26%, while 71% of respondents said that the country is on the “wrong track.” Moreover, only 27% of voters said that going into Iraq was the right thing to do – a five point drop from last month.
The poll surveyed 701 likely voters with a margin of error of plus or minus 4%.