November 10, 2010 - No Tunnel Love In New Jersey, Even Among Commuters, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; 90 Percent Say New Yorkers Should Help Pay For Project

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New Jersey voters support 53 - 37 percent Gov. Christopher Christie's decision to cancel a rail tunnel under the Hudson River and say 90 - 6 percent that if the project is revived, New York should share in the financing, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Eleven percent of New Jersey voters commute to New York City for work and even that group is split with 50 percent backing Christie and 47 percent for the tunnel.

Support for Gov. Christie's tunnel budget ax is 76 - 15 percent among Republicans and 55 - 38 percent among independent voters, while Democrats oppose the chop 56 - 31 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

Urban voters oppose Christie's tunnel-blocking move 52 - 42 percent while support for Christie's move runs from 49 - 44 percent among suburban voters to 63 - 28 percent among seashore voters.

"New Jersey to New York: Show us the money. Garden State voters say if they bring that Hudson River tunnel project back to life, New York will have to put some money on the table," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"For now, most New Jersey voters agree with Gov. Christopher Christie that a new NJ Transit rail tunnel under the Hudson River is just too expensive.

"Even New Jerseyans who work in New York City aren't feeling the tunnel love. Urban voters, mostly in northern New Jersey and dealing with more traffic, like the tunnel idea a lot more than voters in the rest of the state."

New Jersey voters are almost evenly split, with 46 percent saying the state should spend more money on streets and highways rather than mass transit and 45 percent backing more money for transit over highways. Highways win over trains and buses 52 - 36 percent among Republicans and 48 - 44 percent among independent voters, while Democrats favor mass transit spending 55 - 37 percent.

New York City commuters back mass transit spending over highways 63 - 29 percent. The biggest support for road spending is 55 - 33 percent in the Philadelphia suburbs.

By a larger 63 - 35 percent margin, New Jersey voters oppose raising the gasoline tax to help finance road improvements and mass transit. No political or regional group supports raising the gasoline tax.

"New Jersey voters are divided on whether to put the spending priority on better roads or better rails," Carroll said.

"But voters say don't even think about raising the gas tax. Politicians in Trenton call the gas tax the third rail of New Jersey politics. Touch it at your peril."

Christie's proposal to have the state take over the Atlantic City Casino District is a "bad idea," voters say 46 - 38 percent.

But voters say 71 - 23 percent that the state should try to revive Atlantic City as a beach and boardwalk resort.

"We like the idea of restoring the romantic, enchantic Shore resort. Beaches and boardwalks are nice, so New Jerseyans support the state getting involved in bringing back the good old days," Carroll said. "Maybe voters feel casinos are not so nice, so the state should not get too close."

From November 3 - 8, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,362 New Jersey voters, with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio and nationally as a public service and for research. For more data or RSS feed- http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling.xml, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter.

30. To help finance road improvements and mass transportation, would you support or oppose an increase in the gasoline tax?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Support              35%    27%    43%    35%    38%    31%    36%    27%
Oppose               63     71     55     63     60     66     62     71
DK/NA                 2      1      3      2      1      3      2      2
 
                                          Philly        Commute
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore  ToNYC
 
Support              34%    38%    30%    30%    38%    44%
Oppose               62     59     69     70     61     54
DK/NA                 4      3      1      1      1     2
 
 
42. Do you think New Jersey should spend more money on streets and highways or on mass transit such as trains and buses?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Streets/Highways     46%    52%    37%    48%    47%    44%    47%    46%
Mass transit         45     36     55     44     44     45     44     41
DK/NA                10     12      8      8      9     11      9     13
 
                                          Philly        Commute
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore  ToNYCq48
 
Streets/Highways     31%    46%    39%    55%    51%    29%
Mass transit         56     46     53     33     38     63
DK/NA                13      7      8     11     11      8
 
 
43. As you may know, Governor Christie cancelled the cross-Hudson rail tunnel. Do you agree or disagree with Governor Christie's decision?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Agree                53%    76%    31%    55%    59%    47%    59%    32%
Disagree             37     15     56     38     34     40     32     59
DK/NA                10      9     13      7      7     12      9      9
 
                                          Philly        Commute
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore  ToNYCq48
 
Agree                42%    49%    59%    50%    63%    50%
Disagree             52     44     28     32     28     47
DK/NA                 5      6     13     17      9      4
 
 
44. If the plan is revived, do you think New York should have to share in the financing or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Yes                  90%    92%    89%    91%    93%    88%    92%    87%
No                    6      5      5      7      5      6      5     11
DK/NA                 4      3      6      1      1      6      3      2
 
                                          Philly        Commute
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore  ToNYCq48
 
Yes                  95%    94%    86%    86%    89%    92%
No                    4      4      8      8      6      8
DK/NA                 1      2      6      6      5      -
 
 
46. As you may know, the state proposes to take over the casino district in Atlantic City. Do you think that is a good idea or a bad idea?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Good idea            38%    46%    34%    35%    40%    35%    41%    13%
Bad idea             46     39     50     48     44     47     43     69
DK/NA                17     15     16     17     16     17     15     18
 
                                          Philly
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore
 
Good idea            31%    37%    40%    38%    40%
Bad idea             47     47     42     46     45
DK/NA                22     15     17     16     15
 
 
47. Do you think the state should try to revive Atlantic City as a beach and boardwalk resort or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Yes                  71%    68%    78%    68%    67%    74%    68%    79%
No                   23     24     17     26     27     19     25     16
DK/NA                 6      8      5      6      6      7      7      5
 
                                          Philly
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore
 
Yes                  75%    73%    65%    71%    69%
No                   17     20     25     25     26
DK/NA                 7      7     10      4      5
 
TREND: Do you think the state should try to revive Atlantic City as a beach and boardwalk resort or not?
                     Nov 10  Aug 20
                     2010    2010
 
Yes                  71      69
No                   23      25
DK/NA                 6       7
 
 
48. Do you commute to New York City for work or not?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk
 
Yes                  11%    11%    14%     9%    16%     6%    11%     7%
No                   89     89     86     91     84     93     89     93
DK/NA                 -      -      1      -      -      -      -      -
 
                                          Philly
                     Urban  SbUrbn ExUrbn land   Shore
 
Yes                  20%    15%     9%     5%     6%
No                   79     85     91     95     94
DK/NA                 1      -      -      -      -