Pollsters got it wrong the last two times a Democratic Governor ran for re-election: an August 1993 Eagleton-Rutgers poll had Gov. James Florio leading Republican Christine Todd Whitman by nine points, 49%-40%; and Republican Raymond Bateman led Gov. Brendan Byrne by seven points, 46%-39%, in an August 1977 Eagleton-Rutgers poll.
In 1993, Florio had a favorable/unfavorable rating of 49%-40%. 31% rated his job as excellent or good, 36% said he was a fair governor, and 23% rated him as poor.
In 1977, 28% of New Jerseyans viewed Byrne as an excellent or good governor, 39% considered him fair, and 29% said he was doing a poor job.
Whitman beat Florio 49%-48%, and Byrne was re-elected by a 56%-42% margin over Bateman.
Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine trails Republican Christopher Christie by 12 points, 53%-41%, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Christie is the first Republican to be over 50% in a summer poll since Thomas Kean ran for re-election 24 years ago.
Corzine has upside-down favorables/unfavorables of 34%-58%, and an upside-down job approval rating of 33%-60%.
In his bid for re-election to the U.S. Senate, Democrat Robert Torricelli had upside-down favorable/unfavorable rating of 15%-36% and an upside-down job approval rating of 28%-49% in an August 2002 Quinnipiac poll. In an August 2008 Quinnipiac poll, President George W. Bush had an upside-down job approval rating of 26%-70%.