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Action Together New Jersey volunteers prepare a mailing of VBM applications in 2019. (Photo: Action Together New Jersey).

Poll: 65% say they’re very motivated to vote; Republicans hold enthusiasm edge

Democrats far more likely to vote by mail, Monmouth poll says

By Joey Fox, August 18 2021 11:00 am

A strong majority of voters are “very motivated” to vote in the election for governor this November, according to a poll released Wednesday by Monmouth University.

65% of voters say they’re very motivated to vote, while 26% say they’re somewhat motivated and 9% say they’re not that motivated.

77% of self-identified Republicans call themselves very motivated, versus a somewhat lower 65% rate among Democrats. Older voters and white voters, both of whom tend to lean more Republican than the state as a whole, also are more likely to say they’re very motivated to vote.

Compared to previous gubernatorial elections, 27% of voters say they’re more enthusiastic, 9% say they’re less enthusiastic, and 63% say they feel about the same. 34% of self-identified Republicans say they’re more enthusiastic, versus 26% of Democrats.

Asked how they intended to vote, 54% say they plan on voting in-person on Election Day, 36% say they’ll vote by mail, and 5% say they will vote early at an in-person location.

As has been the case in previous pandemic-era elections, there are large partisan divides in expected voting methods. 76% of self-ID’d Republicans plan to vote in-person on Election Day and 16% say they plan to cast a mail-in ballot; only 39% of Democrats, on the other hand, say they’ll vote on Election Day, with 51% saying they will vote by mail.

The poll gives Democrat Phil Murphy a 16-point lead, 52%-36%, over Republican Jack Ciattarelli. 

The Monmouth University Poll was conducted between August 11-16 with a sample size of 810 registered voters and a margin of error of +/- 3.5%.

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