NJ Politics Digest: Poll Finds Menendez-Hugin Race a ‘Dead Heat’

"The Senate race at this point is up for grabs.”

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ).
Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ). Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Reelection was supposed to be a cakewalk for veteran Democratic Senator Bob Menendez. But a new poll by Stockton University finds that ethics problems and a relentless campaign of ads highlighting them by his Republican challenger has left Menendez in a fight for his political life.

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The poll finds Menendez leading Republican challenger Robert Hugin by 2 points—45 percent to 43 percent—which is well within the poll’s margin of error.

New Jersey is a blue state, where Democratic voters easily outnumber those registered Republican. And Democrats are looking to New Jersey as a key player in a blue wave that could sweep them to power in the House of Representatives and the Senate.

But Menendez is hampered after his corruption trial ended in a mistrial and the Senate Ethics Committee admonished him.

Hugin has filled the airwaves with television commercials highlighting Menendez’s ethics woes. The Democrat, has tried to attack Hugin’s backgrounds as a pharmaceutical executive, but those efforts aren’t gaining the same traction with voters as the Republican’s attacks.

Menendez’s campaign claimed the poll results were not accurate, according to reports by the The Record.

Quote of the Day: “The Senate race at this point is up for grabs.” — Michael W. Klein, interim executive director of the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy at Stockton University.

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NJ Politics Digest: Poll Finds Menendez-Hugin Race a ‘Dead Heat’