LIVINGSTON, N.J. — When Gov. Jon Corzine began his bid for a second term in January, public opinion polls showed voters in recession-racked New Jersey didn’t like him and weren’t going to vote for him.
Two weeks before the election, polls show voters still don’t like Corzine but may return him to office anyway.
National political parties are watching New Jersey — the only governor’s race this year other than Virginia’s — for clues to how next year’s congressional elections might go. Yet, here in the state, New Jersey’s economic devastation is overshadowing other issues as voters demand to know who’s at fault and what can be done about it.
Four independent polls show Corzine is in a dead heat with Republican Christopher Christie, a former U.S. attorney [under
ChimpyGeorge W. Bush and Karl Rove]. That improvement could give Democrats a chance to hang onto the governorship despite voter fury over New Jersey’s high unemployment and even higher taxes.