The political landscape in New Jersey is ripe for a historic shift this November. But a shift in New Jersey’s representation in Washington is not likely to happen because the New Jersey Republican Party is wholly unprepared for the opportunity. The nincompoops who lead the NJGOP gave up on the U.S. Senate race in January. They gave up on picking up seats in the Congressional Delegation in 2012 when the new congressional map was drawn.
According to a Fairleigh Dickinson Univeristy Public Mind Poll released this morning, President Barack Obama’s approval rating among New Jersey registered voters is a dismal 36%. 49%, including 21% of Democrats and 45% of Independents, disapprove of the President’s job performance. Senator Cory Booker is 8 points below the magic number of 50% that an incumbent needs to be comfortable in a reelection race. Those are the kind of numbers any opposition party/candidate would pray for 8 weeks before an election.
Confronted with independent polling data that shows him to be in a surprisingly tight 7-10 point race against Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Jeff Bell, Booker has labeled his opponent a “right-wing ideologue,” according to a report on PolitickerNJ.Booker beat former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan for the job of filling the late Senator Frank Lautenberg’s term last October by only 11 percent.
I don’t think we need to send any more right-wing ideologues down to the U.S. Senate. I think we need to send bridge builders to get Congress moving again,” said Booker, the former Newark mayor, said.
Booker touted the work he has done with Republicans in Congress, including such bridge builders as Senators Rand Paul and Marco Rubio to PolitickerNJ, as evidence that he will break the partisan gridlock in Washington.
On his website, Bell says he’s pro-life, pro-traditional marriage and pro-religious freedom. He’s against Internet gambling and drug legalization. Some would say those positions make him a right-wing radical.
In the March Monmouth/APP poll, 55% of NJ voters said Booker deserves to be reelected. Today, only 44% say the former Newark Mayor deserves his own six year term in Washington. Booker was elected last October to fill the remainder of the late Senator Frank Lautenberg’s term. He faces off with Republican Jeff Bell in November.
Booker would beat Bell easily if the election where today, 43%-23%, but 15% say they would vote for a third party candidate and 17% are unsure. But the vast majority of voters, 82%, don’t know enough about Bell for express a favorable or unfavorable opinion of him. The GOP nominee for U.S. Senate against Bill Bradley in 1978, Bell scored a surprise victory in the GOP primary for Senate last month. Of those who do know enough about Bell to express an opinion, the overwhelming impression, 2-1, is favorable.
Establishment favorite Brian Goldberg has 33,194 votes, 25%. Murray Sabrin has 20% of the vote, 26,249.
Bell defeated the last Republican U.S. Senator from New Jersey, Clifford Case, in 1978 GOP primary and lost the general election to Bill Bradley, a Rhodes Scholar and famous NBA basketball star. This year he will take on Booker, a Rhodes Scholar and famous social media star.
Bell did not participate in any of the Republican County conventions this year. He has won the nomination without any county “Party Lines” on the primary ballot.
Bell sent out mail that Republican primary voters are used to receiving and he advertised MMM.
Follow Jeff Bell on twitter. He has 175 followers to Booker’s 1.47 million.
Sen. Joe Kyrillos and Mayor Fred Rast greeting voters in Atlantic Highlands last year. photo by Art Gallagher
Several MMM readers have asked me to endorse of a U.S. Senate candidate to take on Senator Cory Booker. I can’t endorse, or vote for, any of the four candidates who are on the ballot this Tuesday.
I’m writing in Joe Kyrillos on Tuesday. If this post goes viral, Joe Kryillos could be the U.S. Senate Republican nominee on Tuesday night. That’s how bad the U.S. Senate primary campaign has been. Booker would then have a fight on his hands. Share this post.
None of the four candidates on the ballot can make Booker break a sweat this fall.
None of the candidates on the ballot have raised enough money for a county freeholder race, never mind a statewide race for U.S. Senate. Booker has spent over $12 million on his re-election bid since the first of the year. He had $2.9 million in cash on hand as of May 14.
State Senator Joe Kyrillos, the GOP nominee for U.S. Senate in 2012, has refunded more money to his federal donors this year that any of the current Republican candidates have raised.
As rising political star Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) prepares for an uncontested primary, the four Republicans auditioning to oppose him remain far from the spotlight. They are not complete unknowns. One was prominent in politics long ago. Two have been…
The last man who challenged an incumbent John Bennett is sticking with the Monmouth County Republican Chairman in his race against Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden.
Rich Pezzullo, a candidate for the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in the June 3 primary, toldSave Jersey that he’s all in for Bennett to continue to lead the Monmouth GOP.
“He is the Republican in Monmouth county who has known me as a political figure the longest – almost 20 years,” Pezzullo told Save Jersey on Thursday. “He’s set a good example for me as a professional, politician and organizer. I’ve seen him in his roles as a political opponent and political partner. I’ve known him as he grieved the loss of his father, gave his daughters off to marriage and celebrated the birth of his grandchildren. It would be hard to have so much respect for a person and entertain the thought of not supporting him when his record is full of committed service, personal sacrifice and genuine accomplishments.”
Pezzullo, of Freehold, challenged Bennett in the GOP primary for State Senate in 2003 in what was then the 12th legislative district. Bennett was the Senate Co-President with Senator Richard Cody in the 20-20 Senate during the first two years of the McGreevey Administration. Bennett spent $350,000 to beat back Pezzullo’s challenge and the Asbury Park Press, which made Bennett’s $8,000 billing error as Marlboro Township Attorney and nepotism in his legislative office front page news for months.
Bennett prevailed against Pezzullo in the 2003 primary but lost his Senate seat to Ellen Karcher, then Marlboro’s Council President, that November and the GOP lost their equal footing with the Democrats in the Senate.
Pezzullo has the Monmouth County Republican line in his U.S. Senate primary race against Jeff Bell, Brian Goldberg and Murray Sabrin.