You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Gov. Phil Murphy's lead in New Jersey is slipping away

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 10/26/2021 Zachary Faria
Philip D. Murphy wearing a suit and tie © Provided by Washington Examiner

While there is a lot of media focus on the Virginia governor’s race (understandably so), the other governor’s race this year has slowly tightened down the stretch. The possibility that New Jersey elects a Republican governor is no longer out of the question.

The polls have been tightening in New Jersey for months now, with GOP candidate Jack Ciattarelli trailing Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy by just 6 points in a recent Emerson College poll. Murphy, who won his race in 2017 by more than 13 points, has seen his double-digit lead crumble in the RealClearPolitics polling average, leaving Ciattarelli in striking distance with just a week until Election Day.

President Joe Biden has taken to campaigning in New Jersey, a state he won by 16 points. The last two times Democrats controlled the White House and both chambers of Congress, Republicans won both the Virginia and New Jersey governor’s races (1993 and 2009).

Despite enjoying the partisan advantage, Murphy’s COVID-19 response has left him floundering. For most of the pandemic, New Jersey joined New York with the most COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 people. The state has the third most, sitting behind Mississippi and Alabama. Many aspects of Murphy’s response have been out of step with what we know about the virus, including his false contention that schools cannot be safely reopened without requiring everyone, including children and vaccinated adults, to wear masks.

New Jersey saw 31.2% of its small businesses close thanks to the state’s lockdowns. Murphy tried to police the size of Thanksgiving gatherings last year, and he was one of the many Democratic politicians caught maskless at events despite mandating that residents be forced to wear them in similar circumstances.

Between Murphy's mistakes and the growing resentment for Biden and the status quo, a victory in New Jersey is in reach for Ciattarelli and Republicans. Along with the dead heat in Virginia, it is a reminder that Democrats are not prepared for the backlash they have created in their few short months of unified government control in Washington, D.C.


Washington Examiner Videos

Replay Video

Tags: Beltway Confidential, Opinion, New Jersey, Phil Murphy, Coronavirus, Election, Midterm Elections

Original Author: Zachary Faria

Original Location: Gov. Phil Murphy's lead in New Jersey is slipping away


More from Washington Examiner

Washington Examiner
Washington Examiner
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon