Monday, April 27, 2009

Lonegan Camp Claims GOP Gov Race Is Dead Heat

MEMORANDUM
TO: Lonegan for Governor
FROM: Rick Shaftan
RE: New Jersey Republican Primary Data 4/19-4/24/09
DATE: April 27, 2009

SUMMARY

The Republican Primary for Governor is now a dead heat with Chris Christie holding a statistically insignificant 36.1-34.5 lead over Steve Lonegan with 0.4% for Rick Merkt. Without Merkt in the matchup, the numbers tighten to 36.1-34.8

Among those definitely voting, Christie holds a 36.6-36.4 lead with 0.5% for Rick Merkt. Without Merkt in the race, Christie actually trails Lonegan by 36.6-36.8 among definite voters.

The electorate is very conservative. 67 percent of respondents described their political philosophy as conservative (versus 27 percent moderate and 4 percent liberal). Among those definitely voting, 70 percent are conservative, 24 percent moderate and 4 percent liberal.

Christie and Lonegan have near universal name ID and virtually identical favorables, although a higher percentage is unfavorable or mixed on Christie. Rick Merkt is virtually unknown.

Statewide, Christie is 42-11 favorable with 8 mixed and 97 percent ID. Lonegan is 40-7 favorable with 4 mixed and 92 percent ID. Merkt is 2-0 favorable with 30 percent ID.

With definite voters, Christie is 44-12 with 8 mixed and 97 percent ID. Lonegan is 43-7 with 4 mixed and 93 percent ID.

A majority of voters identify Christie as either moderate or liberal while 56 percent identify Lonegan as conservative. Those voters who see Christie as moderate or liberal are supporting Lonegan by a 49-36 margin while those who see Lonegan as a conservative back him by 54-26.

Overall, 30 percent of voters say Christie’s philosophy is the same as theirs while 36 percent say he is more liberal than they are and 7 percent say he is more conservative. By contrast, 44 percent say Lonegan shares the same philosophical view they have, 5 percent say he is more liberal and 13 percent say he is more conservative. 71 percent of those with an opinion say Lonegan’s philosophy matches theirs versus only 41 percent of Christie voters.

These numbers get even worse for Christie among definite voters where 38 percent say he is more liberal than they are, 31 percent say his views are the same and 6 percent say he is more conservative. Four percent say Lonegan is more liberal than they are, 46 percent say his views are the same and 13 percent say he is more conservative than they are. 73 percent of definite voters with an opinion say Lonegan’s philosophy matches theirs as opposed to only 41 percent with Christie.

Lonegan leads by 42-25 (2% for Merkt) in Northwest New Jersey which makes up 25 percent of the statewide vote. Without Merkt in the race, Lonegan’s lead expands to 44-25. In that section of the state, Christie is 33-14 favorable with 8 mixed and 97 percent ID. Lonegan is 48-3 favorable with 4 mixed and 94 percent ID. Merkt is 5-0 favorable, 2 mixed and 40 percent ID.

With definite voters in Northwest New Jersey, Lonegan leads 46-26 (2 for Merkt) and 47-26 without Merkt. Christie has a 36-16 favorable/unfavorable ratio with 7 percent mixed and 98 percent ID as opposed to 52-3 (3 mixed) and 95 percent ID for Lonegan.

In Christie’s home county of Morris, which made up 13 percent of the total sample, Lonegan held a 40-23 lead with 3 percent for Merkt (42-23, 3 with definite voters). Without Merkt in the race, Lonegan’s lead in Morris grows to 42-23 (45-23 with definite voters).

Christie is 38-12 favorable in Morris with 6 mixed and 97 percent ID versus Lonegan’s 47-3 with 7 mixed and 96 percent ID. Merkt is 6-0 with 2 mixed and 51 percent ID in his home county. Among definite voters in Morris, Christie is 43-11 (Six mixed) with 98 percent ID. Lonegan is 53-2 (Six mixed) and 97 percent ID. Merkt is 7-0 (Two mixed) with 51 percent ID among definite Morris County voters.

In the competitive 23rd legislative district, which contains 8 percent of the statewide vote (the most of any district in the state), Lonegan beats Christie 43-24 and has a 47-2 favorable/unfavorable rating (0 mixed) and 90 percent ID. Christie by contrast is 26-15 with 11 percent mixed and 97 percent ID.

The situation is more tilted among definite voters in the 23rd where Lonegan holds a 49-24 lead and is 51-2 favorable with 89 percent ID. Christie by contrast is a very weak 24-18 with 10 mixed and 96 percent ID. Lonegan’s strength in the 23rd will provide a major boost to Assemblyman Mike Doherty in his primary battle for State Senate, as well as others on the Lonegan line.

BALLOT TEST
ALL DEF CONS MEN <65
Chris Christie 36.1% 36.6% 36.4% 36.1% 34.4%
Steve Lonegan 34.5% 36.4% 42.1% 38.6% 36.9%
Rick Merkt 0.4% 0.5% 0.2% 0.4% 0.0%
Undecided 29.0% 26.5% 21.3% 24.9% 28.7%
Christie Edge +1.8% +0.2% -5.7% -2.5% -2.5%

Chris Christie 36.1% 36.6% 36.4% 36.1% 34.4%
Steve Lonegan 34.8% 36.8% 42.3% 38.9% 36.9%
Undecided 29.1% 26.6% 21.3% 25.0% 28.7%
Christie Edge +1.3% -0.2% -5.9% -2.8% -2.5%

% Favs Voting CC 69.8% 68.1% 68.7% 64.5% 68.0%
% Favs Voting SL 74.1% 75.3% 76.0% 74.6% 77.9%

Lonegan’s long term prognosis is helped by converting a higher percentage of favorables into votes than Christie across the board, especially with conservatives, men and voters under 65.

NAME ID
ALL DEF CONS MEN <65
Christie Fav. 41.8% 43.9% 43.8% 43.2% 37.5%
Christie Unf. 10.8% 11.5% 12.6% 12.1% 10.6%
Christie Mix 8.2% 8.1% 9.3% 8.6% 11.5%
Christie ID 96.9% 96.6% 97.7% 97.1% 95.6%

Lonegan Fav. 39.7% 42.5% 49.0% 45.0% 40.0%
Lonegan Unf. 7.1% 7.1% 4.6% 7.1% 5.5%
Lonegan Mix 3.8% 4.1% 4.0% 4.3% 4.5%
Lonegan ID 92.2% 92.8 % 93.0% 93.2% 89.5%

Merkt Fav. 1.8% 2.1% 1.9% 2.1% 1.8%
Merkt Unf. 0.6% 0.7% 0.4% 0.0% 0.0%
Merkt Mix 0.4% 0.4% 0.4% 0.0% 0.6%
Merkt ID 29.6% 29.9% 29.8% 32.6% 30.9%

CC Fav-SL Fav. +2.1% +1.4% -5.2% -1.8% -2.5%
CC ID-SL ID +4.5% +3.8% +4.7% +3.9% +6.1%

CC Fav/Unf+Mix 2.20 2.24 2.00 2.09 1.70
SL Fav/Unf+Mix 3.64 3.79 5.70 3.95 4.00

Lonegan benefits from a significantly higher ratio of favorables to those unfavorable and mixed with the differences greatest among conservatives.

SUMMARY
Since our early March survey (where Christie led 43-21), Lonegan has solidified his base and grown his name ID, ballot share and favorables to a level virtually equal with Christie. More importantly for Lonegan, he has built these favorables up with his base while Christie’s favorables tend to remain the same across the board. Christie also suffers from a poor favorable/unfavorable ratio as well as converting a lower percentage of favorables into votes than Lonegan.

In addition, Lonegan has established a solid base in the high voting Northwest corner of the state.

Rick Merkt plays no role in this race other than to split off votes that would otherwise go to Lonegan.

METHODOLOGY
Neighborhood Research completed 687 surveys of Republicans who had voted in two of the last five primaries (June 2005, June 2006, June 2007, February 2008, June 2008) and said they were “definitely” or “probably” voting in the June 2009 primary. 596 of these respondents said they were “definitely” voting. The theoretical margin of error at a 95% confidence interval is +/- 3.74% with all respondents and +/- 4.01% among those definitely voting.

Phone numbers were taken from a random selection of telephones from the two of five voter file described above. The telephone list includes cellphones associated with residence addresses.

Calls were made with live operators from our facility in Franklin, New Jersey between April 19 and April 24, 2009.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lonegan for Governor Camapaign manager-Rick Shaftan

Owner of Neighborhood Research, conductor of the "poll" and writer of the memo to the Lonegan campaign-Rick Shaftan

Hmmmm....

Chris said...

I think Lonegan will have some surprising numbers at the primaries, since it's usually the more conservative voters who bother to vote in a Republican primary.

NO RINO said...

Lonegan is a true Republican. He has been fighting the Corzine fight for 4 years. I will vote for Lonegan. My wife will vote for Lonegan. My children would vote for Lonegan if they were old enough to vote.

Anonymous said...

MY VOTE IS FOR LONEGAN. Christie has changed his agenda from what he said on his website to what he said at the first debate he had with Lonegan the other night. I am tired of Corzine and the mini me Corzines, his high taxes and his COAH project that is now being forced into my neighborhood. Lonegan WILL slash income tax, property tax, get rid of COAH and force the mini Corzine's out.

If Lonegan does not beat Christie on June 2nd, I will still support Christie because if you are a republican and you vote independent, then you might as well cast your vote for Corzine because you just took a needed vote away from the better alternative for Governor.