A new Stockton University Poll released today that has been out of the field for two weeks, with some data as much as 27 days hold, that shows inflation and the economy as the top issues and President Joe Biden’ statewide favorables split at 46%-47% in a state he carried by sixteen percentage point.
The Stockton Poll, which sampled only registered voters, not likely general election voters, went into the field on October 6 and came out on October 18. Since the poll went in to the field – and came out of it — national news and millions being spent on voter persuasion, may not be reflected in the data.
Still, the results appear to be consistent with up-to-date polling and in other states, which put inflation atop the issue matrix, with voters preferring Republican candidates on economic issues and on crime, and Democratic contenders on abortion and heath care.
“With issues, it’s more about how people feel. That’s not really going to change,” said John Froonjian, director of the Hughes Center. “I think its’ really pretty well baked in at this point.”
Froonjian said there were no major events in the last two weeks “that changes how people feel about the issues.”
“I feel comfortable that this (poll) is valid because it’s all issues,” he said.
A generic statewide ballot in New Jersey gives Democrats a 47%-37% edge in races for the U.S. House of Representatives. But most of the state’s congressional races are not expected to be hugely competitive.
“There is some good news for Republicans in this poll,” Froonjian said. “Support for President Biden is weak, Republican enthusiasm is strong and the top issues in the election are working for the Republicans.”
Jut half of the residents polled said abortion would have a big impact on their vote, although 63% of women said it would; New Jersey women said they were more closely aligned with Democrats on abortion by a 56%-21% margin.
“One question is whether the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade will motivate Democratic turnout, especially among women,” said Froonjian.
New Jerseyans are split on the Inflation Reduction Act enacted by Congress this year; 36% support it and 35% oppose it. Another 27% aren’t sure and don’t know what it is.
The House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol appears unlikely to influence races in New Jersey; just 30% of state residents said they “paid close attention” to the nationally televised hearing.
Nearly eight-in-ten New Jersey residents say they are either very enthusiastic (57%) or somewhat enthusiastic (21%) about voting in the midterm elections, although the poll did not test registered voters and turnout is unlikely to reach the 78% level.
Most New Jersey residents (56%) don’t want Biden to run again, while 27% do; two-thirds of the state (67%) prefer that former President Donald Trump does not seek the presidency in 2024, while 24% want him to do so.
The poll was conducted by the Stockton Polling Institute of the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy from October 6-18, 2022 with a sample size of 707 New Jersey adult registered and a margin of error of +/- 3.7%.
This story was updated at 1:31 PM with comment from Froonjian.