STATE – Republican Chris Christie bested Gov. Jon Corzine in yesterday’s election despite being outspent by the unpopular Democratic incumbent.
With 99 percent of the voting precincts reporting, Christie won 49 percent of the vote to Corzine’s 44.5 percent, even though most public opinion polls suggested a closer race. Independent Chris Daggett, who had the support of 20 percent of likely voters in one recent poll, only won 5.7 percent of the votes cast.
Christie is the first Republican to win a statewide race in New Jersey since Gov. Christie Whitman was re-elected in 1997. Corzine is the first incumbent governor to lose an election since Jim Florio in 1993.
Christie’s running mate, Monmouth County Sheriff Kim Guadagno, will be the first person to hold the newly-created post of lieutenant governor when she takes office in January.
New Jersey saw a record low voter turnout for the governor’s race.
Democrats maintained control of both houses of the Legislature as incumbents enjoyed a night of success in the state’s Assembly races.
“Tomorrow begins the task of fixing our broken state,” Christie said in his victory speech last night. “The campaign we just went through will seem easy compared to the tasks that lie ahead of us to fix our state. We know the challenges we face, and over the next four years we’re going to have our work cut out for us. There are no easy answers to these difficult problems.”
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