by Mark J. Magyar / NJ Spotlight
Four years ago, the last five polls in the governor’s race varied by just five percentage points — with GOP challenger Chris Christie leading by no more than 3 percent and Gov. Jon Corzine by no more than 2 percent. Even with the complication of independent Chris Daggett in the race, the polls were basically right on the money: Christie ended up winning by 4.5 percent, within the margin of error for three of the polls.
Tonight, somebody’s poll is going to be very wrong — and that’s in a race in which the pollsters have no argument over the winner.
The Monmouth University poll has Christie leading Sen. Barbara Buono (D-Middlesex) by 20 percent; the Quinnipiac poll has Christie winning by 28 percent; and the Rutgers-Eagleton poll shows a whopping 36 percent Christie landslide. For a polling profession that usually quotes margins of error of plus or minus 1.5 to 3.5 percent, those Monmouth and Rutgers-Eagleton polls are an Evel Knievel chasm apart.
For Christie, that 16-point spread is the difference between a Monmouth margin worth bragging about on the Sunday morning talk shows and a Rutgers-Eagleton margin worth plastering on billboards in Iowa and New Hampshire tomorrow morning.
Connect with NJTODAY.NET
Join NJTODAY.NET's free Email List to receive occasional updates delivered right to your email address!