Evidence that NJ was not a referendum on Obama/Dems
by jeopardy, Wed Nov 04, 2009 at 06:44:23 AM EST
I thought that I would just go ahead and aggregate the evidence that what happened in NJ last night was more of a referendum on Corzine then on President Obama or the Democratic Party as a whole.
Note: Most of these were lifted from this website or fivethirtyeight.com. I know I should link to the sources more, and I'll try to get around to it.
Ok, evidence that NJ was a problem with Corzine instead of Obama:
1) Corzine had a 37% approval rating going into the election. Nobody has been able to find even a single instance of a sitting Governor winning reelection with an approval rating that low
2) Whereas three-quarters of Corzine's voters cited a national issue -- health care or the economy -- as their primary reason for voting for him, two-thirds of Christie's picked a local one (property taxes and corruption). -Silver
3) Obama approval was actually pretty strong in New Jersey, at 57 percent (the same % Obama won NJ by)-CNN
4) 27 percent of those who approved of Obama nevertheless voted for someone other than Corzine
5) the Democrats look like they'll lose just one seat in the state legislature in Trenton -Silver
6) Corzine went super-negative, including ads attacking his opponent's weight
7) Chris Cristie's ads mostly didn't even mention that he was a Republican, and most of his ads used the Democrat's blue background -Silver
8) the exit polls had 60 percent saying that Barack Obama played no role in their gubernatorial vote, 19 percent saying that their vote was one in support of the President, and 20 percent saying that their vote was in opposition to President Obama. -Mydd
9) The Dems did ok in some other areas, such as going 2/2 in Congressional elections (although they had a bad night in VA)
10) Corzine's poll numbers didn't change off of their trend lines when Obama stumped for him - meaning that Corzine was the issue, not Obama
11) Gubernatorial races are extremely poor yardsticks for other elections, with almost zero correlation -Silver
12) NJ has gone for a Governor in the party opposite of the President's party for decades, including when Reagan and Clinton were very popular and including 2 months after 9/11 when Bush had 90% approval ratings.