Republican Gov. Chris Christie holds a commanding 24-point lead over his Democratic challenger, state Sen. Barbara Buono, according to a Stockton Polling Institute poll released today.
Christie leads Buono by a margin of 56 percent to 32 percent, including voters who lean toward supporting either candidate. Eight percent say they are undecided, and another 4 percent refuse or give some other choice. An earlier Stockton Poll, released Oct. 10, found the governor ahead with a 33-point lead at 61 percent to 28 percent.
In three Stockton polls done over the fall, Buono has never reached the 33 percent mark. The governor’s percentage of support has remained consistently in the mid-50s to low 60s and comfortably ahead of the challenger. The governor leads across multiple demographic categories, including age, household income, sex, and education levels. The only group in which Buono leads is among racial and ethnic minorities. Christie leads in every county except in the Democratic stronghold of Essex County and in Union County, where there is a statistical tie.
The latest statewide poll was conducted with 804 likely New Jersey voters from Oct. 23-28, 2013. Interviewers calling live from The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey campus called both land lines and cell phones. The survey has a margin of error of +/-3.5 percent. The Stockton Polling Institute is part of the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy at Stockton College.
“Even if all of the undecideds break for Senator Buono, Governor Christie still leads by landslide proportions,” said Daniel J. Douglas, director of the Hughes Center.
Buono still struggles with name recognition; more than one-third (35 percent) are unfamiliar with Buono and only 33 percent view her favorably.
However, the governor is known by 97 percent of respondents and 67 percent have a somewhat or very favorable opinion of him. Sixty-two percent rate Christie’s job performance as excellent or good, with 36 percent rating it as fair or poor.