June 20, 2002 - Taxes, School Aid Pull Down McGreevey Approval, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds
Hampered by negative ratings for his handling of taxes and state aid to local schools, New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey approaches the six-month mark with a 43 – 30 percent approval rating, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Registered Democrats approve of the Governor 54 – 17 percent, while Republican voters give him a negative 26 – 45 percent approval and independent voters approve 45 – 31 percent.

Gov. McGreevey is slammed with a negative 31 – 49 percent approval rating for the way he is handling taxes. Democrats split 38 – 37 percent while Republicans give him a big negative 18 – 62 percent score.

The Governor also gets a negative 30 – 41 percent approval for his handling of state aid to local schools. Even Democrats give him a negative 31 – 36 percent score on this topic.

"Anytime a public official's approval rating falls below 50 percent it's a sign of trouble. Gov. McGreevey's approval rating has been stalled in the low to mid 40's all year," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "McGreevey gets his lowest marks from voters for his handling of state aid to education and for taxes.

"And taxes is the biggest worry among New Jersey voters."

In an open-ended question, where voters can give any answer, 21 percent list taxes as the most important problem in New Jersey, followed by 12 percent who list auto insurance, 10 percent who list education and 9 percent who list the economy.

Five percent of New Jersey voters are "very satisfied" with life in the Garden State, while 48 percent are "somewhat satisfied;" 31 percent are "somewhat dissatisfied" and 15 percent are "very dissatisfied."

McGreevey's ratings for handling of other issues are:
  • 32 – 39 percent approval for handling the state budget;
  • 42 – 29 percent approval for handling education;
  • 38 – 39 percent approval for handling the economy and jobs.
From June 11 - 17, Quinnipiac University surveyed 736 New Jersey registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 3.6 percent.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and nationally as a public service and for research.

For additional data -- www.quinnipiac.edu
1. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling his job as Governor?
                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 43% 26% 54% 45% 48% 39% 50% Disapprove 30 45 17 31 34 26 27 DK/NA 27 29 29 24 19 34 22

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 43% 49% 47% 40% 39% 36% Disapprove 30 18 24 37 33 43 DK/NA 27 33 29 23 28 22

13. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in New Jersey today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Very satisfied 5% 5% 6% 3% 5% 4% 3% Smwht satisfied 48 45 54 48 48 49 47 Smwht dissatisfied 31 34 31 31 32 31 34 Very dissatisfied 15 15 8 17 14 15 16 DK/NA 1 1 1 - 1 1 -

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Very satisfied 5% 9% 5% 3% 2% 3% Smwht satisfied 48 49 49 57 42 46 Smwht dissatisfied 31 27 28 26 41 36 Very dissatisfied 15 13 16 12 16 15 DK/NA 1 2 1 1 - 1

14. What do you think is the most important problem facing New Jersey today?

                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Crime total: 4% 3% 6% 4% 1% 6% 4% Crime/Violence general 3 2 5 3 1 5 4 Drugs 1 1 1 1 - 1 -

Budget/Spending total: 7% 8% 6% 6% 9% 4% 4% Budget/Spending general 4 7 3 3 5 3 3 Budget deficits 1 - 1 1 1 1 1 Reducing size of govt./Gov spending 1 - - 1 1 - - Budget other 1 1 2 1 2 - -

Taxes total: 21% 30% 17% 20% 23% 21% 24% Taxes general 7 11 5 7 7 7 6 Property tax 13 18 10 12 15 12 16 Taxes other 1 1 2 1 1 2 2

Economy total: 9% 7% 8% 12% 13% 6% 9% Economy general 2 3 1 4 4 1 1 Unemployment/jobs 5 3 5 6 7 4 6 Cost of living 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Economy other 1 - 1 1 1 - 1

Education total: 10% 9% 10% 11% 9% 12% 9% Education general 7 6 7 9 6 9 5 Funding education 1 2 1 - 1 1 2 Education other 2 1 2 2 2 2 2

Transportation total: 3% 3% 2% 2% 3% 2% 1% Highway traffic/ congestion 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Highway tolls 1 1 1 1 1 1 - Trans other 1 1 - - 1 - -

Auto insurance 12 9 13 13 9 13 16 Housing Costs/ Availability 1 - 1 1 - 1 - Overcrowding 2 2 1 3 2 2 3 Healthcare/Costs/ Insurance/HMO's 3 5 3 2 3 3 1 Social security 1 - 1 - 1 1 - Environment/Pollution 3 3 4 3 3 4 5 Open space/Urban sprawl 1 1 - 2 1 1 2 Immigration 1 2 - 2 3 - - Terrorism general 1 2 - 1 - 1 1

Other 7 4 8 6 8 6 8 DK/NA 9 6 12 6 7 10 3



14. What do you think is the most important problem facing New Jersey today? (By Area)

                       Urban    SubUrbn  ExUrbn   PhllyLnd Shore


Crime total: 13% 2% 1% 4% 1% Crime/Violence general 12 1 1 4 1 Drugs 1 1 - - -

Budget/Spending total: 3% 7% 9% 7% 5% Budget/Spending general 2 4 6 4 2 Budget deficits - 2 1 1 - Reducing size of govt./Gov spending - - 2 - 2 Budget other 1 1 - 2 1

Taxes total: 13% 19% 34% 20% 25% Taxes general 4 6 13 7 7 Property tax 8 12 21 11 17 Taxes other 1 1 - 2 1

Economy total: 8% 10% 5% 8% 11% Economy general - 3 1 2 4 Unemployment/jobs 6 5 3 5 5 Cost of living 2 1 1 - 2 Economy other - 1 - 1 -

Education total: 9% 13% 7% 8% 11% Education general 6 11 4 6 7 Funding education - - 1 1 3 Education other 3 2 2 1 1

Transportation total: 3% 2% 3% 1% 2% Highway traffic/ congestion 1 1 1 - 1 Highway tolls 1 1 - 1 1 Transportation other 1 - 2 - -



Auto insurance 9 12 9 14 12 Housing Costs/ Availability - - 1 - 3 Overcrowding 3 1 1 2 6 Healthcare/Costs/ Insurance/HMO's - 3 3 6 3 Social security 1 - - 2 - Environment/Pollution 1 3 7 2 3 Open space/Urban sprawl - 2 - 2 1 Immigration 3 1 1 - 1 Terrorism general 1 1 1 1 1

Other 14 6 4 8 3 DK/NA 12 9 6 8 9

15. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling the state budget?
                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 32% 23% 38% 36% 38% 27% 37% Disapprove 39 54 27 40 42 37 37 DK/NA 28 23 35 25 20 36 26

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 32% 36% 36% 33% 30% 24% Disapprove 39 27 40 41 43 44 DK/NA 28 37 24 26 27 32

16. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling education?

                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 42% 38% 42% 44% 44% 39% 42% Disapprove 29 30 27 29 27 31 31 DK/NA 29 32 31 27 29 30 26

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 42% 47% 40% 42% 42% 38% Disapprove 29 29 30 23 26 37 DK/NA 29 24 29 35 33 25

17. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling taxes?

                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 31% 18% 38% 36% 35% 28% 35% Disapprove 49 62 37 49 50 48 46 DK/NA 20 21 25 15 15 24 19

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 31% 39% 33% 34% 28% 19% Disapprove 49 34 48 53 51 62 DK/NA 20 28 19 13 21 20

18. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling the economy and jobs?
                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 38% 29% 42% 43% 44% 34% 45% Disapprove 39 47 35 40 40 38 39 DK/NA 22 25 23 17 16 28 16

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 38% 42% 39% 40% 37% 34% Disapprove 39 36 42 36 39 40 DK/NA 22 22 19 24 24 26

19. Do you approve or disapprove of the way James McGreevey is handling state aid to local schools?
                                                                            Union
                       Tot      Rep      Dem      Ind      Men      Wom     HouseHld


Approve 30% 26% 31% 32% 31% 28% 34% Disapprove 41 42 36 42 38 42 40 DK/NA 30 33 33 26 30 30 26

Tot Urban SubUrbn ExUrbn PhllyLnd Shore

Approve 30% 31% 27% 33% 35% 26% Disapprove 41 37 41 38 36 50 DK/NA 30 31 32 29 29 24