The race for Rodney Frelinghuysen’s open 11th district House seat remains close, with Democrat Mikie Sherrill leads Republican Jay Webber by four percentage points, 48%-44%, according to a new Monmouth University poll released today.
That puts the race close to where it was in July, when the Monmouth poll put Sherrill ahead 44%-40%.
These numbers use Monmouth’s standard midterm turnout model.
But when Monmouth uses a model that incorporates a turnout surge in Democratic areas, Sherrill’s lead increases to 50%-43%.
Webber has favorables of 35%-21%, while Sherrill is at 45%-15%.
President Donald Trump has a 49%-48% job approval in the 11th district. That’s up from an upside-down 47%-50% in July.
“The basic contours of this race have not changed. Even though Republicans have the edge in party affiliation, many are not happy with the president or key GOP initiatives such as the tax reform plan,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.
Among men, Webber leads 54%-39%, and Sherrill has a 57%-35% lead among women.
The poll gives Webber a 50%-42% lead in the Morris and Sussex portion of the 11th, while Sherrill leads 56%-37% in Essex and 58%-35% in Passaic.
The Republican tax plan, which Webber supports and Sherrill opposes, is slightly unpopular in the Frelinghuysen district, 43% approve, 46% disapprove. Those numbers are identical to the summer Monmouth poll.
“If anything should play well in a wealthy Republican district, it’s a tax cut. But the elimination of certain deductions takes the sheen off this plan for many voters in New Jersey’s 11th,” said Murray.
The confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court will have little impact on the House race, the poll says.
“Most of the voters who say they have been motivated by the Kavanaugh nomination are partisan identifiers, which suggests this issue has been more likely to firm up their choice rather than actually flip their vote. These results suggest that the factors driving this race have already been baked in. Any new developments only serve to strengthen the choices voters were already inclined to make,” said Murray. He added, “But we did notice some very slight shifts over the weekend as the confirmation vote played out but nothing definitive. We will continue to monitor this issue in future polls.”
The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone from October 3-7, 2018 with 356 likely voters in New Jersey’s 11th district. The question results in this release have a margin of error of +/- 5.2%. . The error of the difference between the two candidates’ vote share (i.e. the “lead”) is +/-7.3%. The poll was conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute in West Long Branch, NJ.Monmouth Poll NJ11 Oct 9