July 3, 2001 - McGreevey Leads Schundler In New Jersey Gov Race, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Education Emerges As Most Important Issue
Democrat James McGreevey leads Republican Bret Schundler in the New Jersey governor's race, 48 - 35 percent with 14 percent undecided, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

In a May 10 poll by the independent Quinnipiac University, when Schundler was locked in

a primary battle with Bob Franks, McGreevey led Schundler 48 - 27 percent. In this latest poll, Democrats back McGreevey 85 - 5, while Republicans back Schundler 74 - 13. Independent voters go with the Democrat 47 - 31 percent.

From June 27 - July 1, Quinnipiac University surveyed 851 New Jersey registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 3.4 percent.

"It's back to the real world for Bret Schundler. Conservative voters helped him to a big Republican primary win. But now he faces Democrat James McGreevey, who came within a whisker of knocking off a popular Republican incumbent governor four years ago," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"But it's still four months to the election, and Schundler has shown he can overcome tough odds."

By a 32 - 17 percent margin, voters have a favorable opinion of McGreevey, with 17 percent mixed and 34 percent saying they don't know enough to form an opinion.

Schundler gets a 25 - 17 percent favorability rating, with 16 percent mixes and 41 percent saying they don't know enough to form an opinion.

Looking at some of the issues that divide the candidates;
  • 71 percent of New Jersey voters say it's more important to control gun ownership, while 24 percent say it's more important to protect the rights of gun owners.
  • 47 percent of voters say abortion should be generally available, while 37 percent say abortion should be available with stricter limits and 14 percent say abortion should not be permitted.
  • 50 percent support school vouchers, while 43 oppose vouchers.
Only 28 percent of voters say a candidate's position on abortion is "extremely important," while 28 percent say it is "very important."

And only 37 percent of voters say a candidate's position on gun control is "extremely important," while 29 percent say it is "very important."

Voters care more about the candidates' positions on these issues:
  • Education - 49 percent "extremely important," 38 percent "very important."
  • Taxes - 45 percent "extremely important," 37 percent "very important."
  • Auto Insurance - 41 percent "extremely important," 36 percent "very important."
"Here we go again: Auto insurance, that only-in-New-Jersey issue, is emerging as a key campaign factor, as it did in 1997," Carroll said.

"The candidates have clearly distinct positions on gun control and abortion, but these issues are not as important to the voters as education and taxes."

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

For additional data -- www.quinnipiac.edu
6. Is your opinion of James McGreevey favorable, unfavorable mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Favorable 32% 16% 50% 29% 31% 33%

Unfavorable 17 32 6 13 23 12

Mixed 17 16 17 19 15 19

Hvn't hrd enough 34 35 27 38 31 36

REFUSED 1 1 - - 1 1



7. Is your opinion of Bret Schundler favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Favorable 25% 46% 9% 22% 29% 22%

Unfavorable 17 5 29 16 18 17

Mixed 16 15 15 19 14 18

Hvn't hrd enough 41 33 46 43 38 43

REFUSED 1 1 1 - 1 -



8. If the election for Governor were being held today, and the candidates were James McGreevey the Democrat and Bret Schundler the Republican for whom would you vote?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


McGreevey 48% 13% 85% 47% 42% 53% Schundler 35 74 5 31 41 30

SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 - 1 1 2 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 1 - 3 2 1 DK/NA 14 11 9 19 13 15



10. Which party would you like to see control the New Jersey State legislature after the elections in November the Democratic Party or the Republican Party?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Democratic Party 46% 5% 92% 40% 42% 49%

Republican Party 38 86 4 30 44 33

DK/NA 16 10 4 30 14 18





11. I am going to read a list of some of the issues that will probably be discussed in this year's campaign for governor. As I read each one, please tell me how important the candidates' position on that issue will be in influencing your vote for governor -- extremely important, very important, somewhat important, or not important. How about the candidates' position on auto insurance?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Extremely important 41% 37% 46% 41% 39% 44% Very important 36 36 35 37 34 37

Smwht important 19 24 17 16 22 17 Not important 3 2 2 5 4 2

DK/NA 1 1 - 1 1 -

12. How about the candidates' position on Taxes?
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Extremely important 45% 50% 44% 44% 42% 48% Very important 37 38 35 37 35 38

Smwht important 16 12 17 16 19 13 Not important 2 - 3 3 3 1

DK/NA - - - - 1 -

13. How about the candidates' position on Abortion?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Extremely important 28% 27% 28% 30% 21% 33% Very important 28 24 33 28 23 31

Smwht important 26 29 25 25 30 23 Not important 17 19 14 16 23 11

DK/NA 2 2 1 2 2 1

14. How about the candidates' position on Education?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Extremely important 49% 46% 57% 47% 41% 56% Very important 38 40 34 40 41 35

Smwht important 10 12 8 10 14 7 Not important 2 2 1 3 3 1

DK/NA - - - - 1 -

15. How about the candidates' position on Gun Control?
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Extremely important 37% 27% 43% 41% 26% 46% Very important 29 24 37 28 25 33

Smwht important 21 30 14 20 28 15 Not important 12 18 6 10 19 6

DK/NA 1 2 - - 1 -



16. What do you think is more important: To protect the right of Americans to own guns or to control gun ownership?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Protect rights 24% 41% 9% 22% 34% 16%

Control ownership 71 53 88 74 61 79

DK/NA 5 6 3 4 6 5

17. Which of these statements comes closest to your view? -

(A)Abortion should be generally available to those who want it. (B)Abortion should be available, but under stricter limits than it is now. (C)Abortion should not be permitted.

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


(A)..generally available 47% 33% 58% 51% 43% 50%

(B)..available, stricter limits 37 46 32 32 40 35

(C)..should not be permitted 14 20 9 15 15 13

DK/NA 2 1 1 2 2 1

18. Do you favor or oppose providing parents with tax money in the form of school vouchers to help pay for their children to attend private or religious schools?

                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Favor 50% 64% 38% 50% 52% 49%

Oppose 43 29 56 43 43 43

DK/NA 7 7 6 7 5 8