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Politics Biden's unpopularity may undercut New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy's reelection plans

21:41  27 october  2021
21:41  27 october  2021 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

New Jersey governor race tests Murphy's progressive politics

  New Jersey governor race tests Murphy's progressive politics TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Paid sick leave. Taxpayer-funded community college. A phased-in $15 minimum wage. New Jersey has taken a decidedly liberal shift under first-term Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, increasing income taxes on the wealthy, expanding voting rights and tightening the state's already restrictive gun laws. It’s a notable change from his predecessor, Republican Chris Christie, who spent two terms pushing more moderate policies. Murphy'sNew Jersey has taken a decidedly liberal shift under first-term Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, increasing income taxes on the wealthy, expanding voting rights and tightening the state's already restrictive gun laws.

President Joe Biden stood before a backdrop of trains in Kearny, New Jersey, earlier this week to make the case for his embattled infrastructure and reconciliation bills. He also hoped to help push Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy over the finish line.

  Biden's unpopularity may undercut New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy's reelection plans © Provided by Washington Examiner

Murphy is locked in a surprisingly tight reelection battle against GOP challenger Jack Ciattarelli, and the Democrats are bringing in the big guns to help Murphy seal the deal.

BIDEN BOOSTS HIS SPENDING BILLS AND GOV. PHIL MURPHY IN NEW JERSEY

Biden won New Jersey by 16 points just one year ago, and Murphy held a 26-point lead over Ciattarelli as recently as May. That lead slipped to just six points as of Oct. 18 before a recent uptick, indicating the result could be closer than first expected.

Monmouth poll: Murphy leading Ciattarelli by 11 points in New Jersey gubernatorial race

  Monmouth poll: Murphy leading Ciattarelli by 11 points in New Jersey gubernatorial race The poll among likely voters released Wednesday shows Murphy leading Ciattarelli, 51 percent to 40 percent. Among registered voters, the lead is 50 percent to 39 percent. Murphy’s lead has narrowed somewhat as the race has progressed, but only slightly from a September Monmouth poll, when he led Ciattarelli by 13 points among likely voters, 53 percent to 40 percent. In an August Monmouth poll, Murphy led by 17 points, 54 percent to 37 percent.

Biden's former boss Barack Obama made an appearance in Newark a few days prior to stump for the governor, indicating the Democrats are at least a little worried about the election's outcome.

"The race in New Jersey has tightened for two reasons, mostly because of the national mood turning more sour on President Biden and the Democrats, and secondly because of the campaigns themselves," said Mike DuHaime, a Republican political strategist and campaign veteran.

DuHaime blames a "lurch left" on spending and taxes in Washington that's hurting Democrats in all but the bluest of districts.

A group of New Jersey house Democrats is working to raise the state and local tax deduction, or SALT, which was capped at $10,000 per taxpayer during the 2017 tax cuts. The limit hurt high earners in states such as New Jersey. However, raising it would cut revenue at a time when the party is trying to find a way to pay for new and expanded programs.

COVID-19, corporate taxes, Iran nuclear deal on Biden's agenda for Day One of G-20 summit

  COVID-19, corporate taxes, Iran nuclear deal on Biden's agenda for Day One of G-20 summit The G-20 summit that opened Saturday in Rome will mark the first time in two years that some of the world's most powerful leaders have met in person.Biden arrived at the modernist, cloud-shaped convention center in Rome where the Group of 20, or G-20, is meeting and was welcomed by Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi. A few minutes later, he joined other leaders for a traditional "family photo.

The infrastructure bill also includes significant dollars for construction projects in New Jersey due to its many commuter routes to New York City. But that bipartisan bill is being held up as the party wrangles over what to cut and what to keep in the related reconciliation bill.

"The Murphy campaign has allowed the race to close by running a campaign that appeals to voters already voting for him," DuHaime said. "I suppose it is an expected strategy for re-election of a Democrat in a Democratic state, but it has allowed Jack [Ciattarelli] to creep closer and closer as time has gone by, when they probably could have knocked him out early."

Few who are watching the race closely expect the Republican to pull out a win, yet even a close margin could be a sign of trouble for Biden.

A Monmouth University poll released Oct. 27 showed Murphy with an 11-point lead overall, but there was a partisan enthusiasm gap, with 38% of Republicans and just 24% of Democrats saying they're "more enthusiastic than usual" about the election.

New Jersey Gubernatorial Race Too Close to Call as Republican Jack Ciattarelli Defies Polls

  New Jersey Gubernatorial Race Too Close to Call as Republican Jack Ciattarelli Defies Polls With 80 percent of the vote counted, Ciattarelli leads by roughly 20,000 votes.As of 1 a.m. Wednesday morning, with 80 percent of the vote counted, Ciattarelli held 1,082,101 votes to Murphy’s 1,062,790, according to the New York Times. Several counties across New Jersey were still in the process of reporting vote totals.

The same poll found that Biden's job performance rating in Jersey had become negative (43% approve, 49% disapprove), while Murphy retained a positive 52% approval rating. This may indicate a relative dissatisfaction with Democrats at the national level.

“The president’s visit on Monday may have done more to boost Biden rather than Murphy when you look at their approval ratings,” Monmouth University Polling Institute Director Patrick Murray said in a statement accompanying the results.

Despite being known as a Democratic stronghold, New Jersey is a state that can go either way when it comes to governors. No Democrat has been reelected to the position since 1977, and Republican Chris Christie held the office as recently as January 2018.

Murphy has already implemented some of the policies Biden hopes to introduce nationally. The state will offer free community college to families earning less than $65,000 a year, and Murphy has increased taxes on residents earning more than $1 million a year.

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Stephanie Murphy's defiant long game to keep Dems in power

  Stephanie Murphy's defiant long game to keep Dems in power The voice of House battleground Democrats isn't afraid to openly criticize her party leaders if she thinks it will help them keep the House in 2022.Murphy has emerged as one of the most vocal critics of President Joe Biden’s chaotic attempts to clear both his infrastructure and social spending plans through Congress, embracing a blunt manner that’s made her a spokesperson of sorts for her party’s small but feisty moderate wing.

While much more national attention has been focused on the Virginia governor's race, where state law forbids incumbents from seeking consecutive terms, the New Jersey race could also be looked at as a referendum on Biden's agenda and the wider mood of Democrats one year removed from the 2020 presidential election.

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Tags: New Jersey, Phil Murphy, Democratic Party, Campaigns, Joe Biden

Original Author: Haisten Willis

Original Location: Biden's unpopularity may undercut New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy's reelection plans

'44 years to get here': Phil Murphy declares victory as rival blasts media for calling NJ governor's race .
Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy took the stage Wednesday evening claiming victory after several news outlets declared him the projected winner in the gubernatorial race. © Provided by Washington Examiner "We just had the most New Jersey experience," Murphy joked with the crowd in his victory speech. "I was on my way someplace, and it took us longer to get there than we planned. As a matter of fact, some might say it took 44 years to get here." Murphy also expressed how "humbled" he was "to be the first Democratic governor reelected" in the state of New Jersey since 1977.

usr: 1
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