The Governor’s Suburban Challenge

A largely overlooked statistic from Tuesday's election is likely occupying much time and evaluation by Governor Corzine's political advisors, as they plan their campaign strategy and tactics.

On Tuesday, the Governor garnered only 77% of his party's primary vote, against 3 unknown, and arguably, kooky candidates.

What is more significant is that he got more than 70% in only 10 counties, almost all of whom have significant minority populations, or in the case of Morris and Atlantic counties, a contested local election in a town with a large minority population.

The Governor's startling under-performance among the Democratic Party's most active and committed suburban voters, in most of the state, home to NJ's suburban swing voters, is the clearest indication that the GOP is right to think this may be their first real opportunity in a decade to win a state-wide election.

In most of South Jersey and in most of NJ's suburban counties, the Governor got just over 60 percent of the vote — Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Salem, Gloucester, Ocean, Sussex, Middlesex, Hunterdon, and Monmouth.

In Warren County, only 55% of the Democrat voters chose the Governor.

What is startling is that these are the Democratic Party's most committed voters and activists – county committee members, volunteers, etc.

To the extent that these voters are reflecting the same views and opinions of their fellow suburban Democrat, Independent and Republican neighbors, it appears that Chris Christie has a strong opportunity to win large margins in these areas.

The Governor’s Suburban Challenge