October 23, 1997 - McGreevey Has Slight Edge In TV Ad Impact, Quinnipiac College Poll Finds; Newspapers Are Main Source Of NJ Campaign News
Democratic challenger James McGreevey's TV advertising is helping him more than Gov. Christine's Todd Whitman's advertising effort, according to a Quinnipiac College Poll released today. In fact, Gov. Whitman's ads are helping McGreevey more than the Republican, voters say.

And despite the dollars spent on TV advertising, 40 percent of New Jersey voters tell the independent Quinnipiac College Poll they get most of their information on the Governor's race from newspapers; 27 percent say they get most of their information from TV news and 7 percent point to TV advertising as the main source of information, with 6 percent listing radio news and only 1 percent listing TV debates.

By a 33 - 28 percent margin, voters say McGreevey has been more responsible for negative campaigning: 46 percent say McGreevey spends more time attacking Whitman, while 37 percent say he spends more time explaining what he would do if elected. Looking at Whitman's campaign, 44 percent say she spends more time explaining her agenda, while 41 percent say she spends more time attacking McGreevey.

"Most New Jersey voters get most of their political information from newspapers and broadcast news. That's a happy circumstance because they don't put much stock in political advertising," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac College Polling Institute.

"Some people believe political ads on TV, but just about as many say they don't."

Of the 70 percent of voters who say they've seen some Whitman TV ads:
  • 20 percent say the Whitman ads make them think more favorably about McGreevey, while 14 percent think less favorably and 63 percent are not affected.
  • 13 percent say the ads make them think more favorably about Whitman, while 25 percent feel less favorably and 62 percent are not affected;
  • They split 40 - 41 percent on whether the ads are accurate or misleading;
  • 36 percent find them useful, while 58 percent say they're not useful;
  • 57 percent find them positive, while 36 percent see them as negative.

Of the 64 percent of voters who say they've seen some McGreevey TV ads:
  • 11 percent say the McGreevey ads make them think more favorably about Whitman, while 16 percent think less favorably and 71 percent are not affected.
  • 24 percent say the ads make them think more favorably about McGreevey, while 19 percent feel less favorably and 55 percent are not affected;
  • They split 39 - 38 percent on whether the ads are accurate or misleading;
  • 44 percent find them useful, while 52 percent say they're not useful;
  • 43 percent see them as positive, while 49 percent say they're negative.



"Talk about two-edges swords: Whitman's TV ads have turned off more voters than they've attracted. McGreevey's are more effective, but not by much," Carroll said.

From October 14 - 20 Quinnipiac College surveyed 1,120 New Jersey residents who say they are registered voters. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percent.

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

Additional data available.

38. What do you think Christine Whitman is spending more time doing in her campaign - explaining what she would do if re-elected Governor or attacking James McGreevey?
                                                                        Sep 16
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     1997


Explaining 44% 57% 35% 43% 45% 44% 63%

Attacking 41 28 51 44 42 41 20

DK/NA 14 15 14 13 13 15 17



39. What do you think James McGreevey is spending more time doing in his campaign - explaining what he would do if elected Governor or attacking Christine Whitman?

                                                                        Sep 16
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     1997


Explaining 37% 23% 51% 39% 34% 40% 41%

Attacking 46 58 34 45 52 40 35

DK/NA 17 19 15 16 14 20 24



40. Who's more responsible for the negative campaigning there has been this year - Christine Whitman or James McGreevey?
                                                                        
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     


Whitman 28% 13% 45% 28% 27% 28%

McGreevey 33 49 20 31 37 30

SAME/NO DIFFERENCE (VOL) 20 19 15 25 22 19

DK/NA 19 19 20 17 14 23



41. Where have you been getting most of your information about the campaign for Governor this year?
                                                                        
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     


Family,Friends, Acquaintances 3% 3% 4% 2% 2% 3%

Mag,News articles 1 1 - 1 1 1

Mag,Opinion columns - 1 - - - -

Newspaper,News articles 40 40 34 46 46 35

Newspaper, Editorials,Opinion columns 6 7 5 6 6 5

Newspaper,Paid political advertisements 1 1 1 1 1 1

Radio,News 6 5 7 6 7 6

Radio,Paid political advertisements 1 1 1 1 - 1

Radio,Political talk shows 3 3 1 3 2 3

TV,News 27 29 32 22 24 31

TV,Paid political advertisements 7 4 9 7 7 8

TV,Political talk shows 1 1 1 1 1 1

TV,Debates 1 1 - 1 - 1

Computer/Internet - - 1 - 1 -

Mailings,Political campaigns 1 1 2 1 - 2

Telephone,Political campaigns - - 1 - - -

OTHER (SPECIFY) 1 1 2 1 1 1

DK/NA 1 1 - 1 1 1



42. Have you seen any of Christine Whitman's television ads for this year's election?
                                                                        
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     


Yes 70% 72% 68% 72% 71% 70%

No 29 28 31 28 29 29

REFUSED 1 - 1 1 1 1



43.(If yes) I would like to ask you a few questions about Christine Whitman's television ads for this year's election. First, from what you have seen of Christine Whitman's television ads, are they more positive or more negative?

                                 Have seen Whitman's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Positive 57% 75% 41% 53% 55% 58%

Negative 36 21 51 37 37 35

DK/NA 8 4 8 11 8 8



44. From what you have seen of Christine Whitman's television ads, are they mostly accurate or mostly misleading?

                                 Have seen Whitman's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Accurate 41% 67% 21% 35% 47% 34%

Misleading 40 17 63 44 35 45

DK/NA 19 16 16 21 18 21



45. From what you have seen of Christine Whitman's television ads, have you found the information provided useful or not useful?

                                 Have seen Whitman's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Useful 36% 49% 27% 34% 39% 34%

Not useful 58 44 72 59 56 60

DK/NA 6 7 2 7 5 6



46. From what you have seen of Christine Whitman's television ads, have they made you think more favorably of Christine Whitman, less favorably of Christine Whitman, or haven't they affected your opinion of Christine Whitman?
                                 
                                 Have seen Whitman's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

More favorable 13% 25% 6% 8% 13% 12%

Less favorably 25 8 38 28 21 28

Haven't affected opinion 62 66 54 63 65 59

DK/NA 1 1 2 1 1 1



47. From what you have seen of Christine Whitman's television ads, have they made you think more favorably of James McGreevey, less favorably of James McGreevey, or haven't they affected your opinion of James McGreevey?

                                 Have seen Whitman's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

More favorably 20% 7% 40% 21% 17% 24%

Less favorably 14 23 4 14 17 12

Haven't affected opinion 63 68 52 64 65 61

DK/NA 3 3 4 2 2 3



48. Have you seen any of James McGreevey's television ads for this year's election?
                      
                          Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     


Yes 64 65 61 67 67 61

No 34 33 37 32 31 37

DK/NA 2 2 3 1 1 2



49. (If yes) I would like to ask you a few questions about James McGreevey's television ads for this year's election. First, from what you have seen of James McGreevey's television ads, are they more positive or more negative?
                                 
                                 Have seen McGreevey's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Positive 43% 24% 66% 46% 38% 49%

Negative 49 70 26 45 55 42

DK/NA 8 5 8 10 8 8



50. From what you have seen of James McGreevey's television ads, are they mostly accurate or mostly misleading?
                                 
                                 Have seen McGreevey's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Accurate 39% 19% 66% 38% 33% 44%

Misleading 38 58 17 36 45 31

DK/NA 24 23 17 26 22 25



51. From what you have seen of James McGreevey's television ads, have you found the information provided useful or not useful?
                                 
                                 Have seen McGreevey's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

Useful 44% 33% 59% 44% 42% 46%

Not useful 52 65 37 52 56 48

DK/NA 4 3 4 4 2 6



52. From what you have seen of James McGreevey's television ads, have they made you think more favorably of James McGreevey, less favorably of James McGreevey, or haven't they affected your opinion of James McGreevey?
                                 
                                 Have seen McGreevey's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

More favorably 24% 11% 43% 24% 22% 27%

Less favorably 19 32 7 18 21 17

Haven't affected opinion 55 55 50 57 55 54

DK/NA 2 2 1 1 1 2



53. From what you have seen of James McGreevey's television ads, have they made you think more favorably of Christine Whitman, less favorably of Christine Whitman, or haven't they affected your opinion of Christine Whitman?
                                 
                                 Have seen McGreevey's ads


Tot Rep Dem Ind Men Wom

More favorably 11% 21% 2% 9% 11% 11%

Less favorably 16 6 28 17 14 19

Haven't affected opinion 71 70 69 73 73 68

DK/NA 2 2 1 1 1 2