In a poll of New Jersey registered voters released by FDU Public Mind this morning, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez leads State Senator Joe Kyrillos in the race for U.S. Senate by a 45%-33% margin. FDU did not poll likely voters.
Despite the 12 point gap, the news is not all bad for Kyrilllos.
Among Independent voters the candidates are virtually tied at 28% for Menedez and 27% for Kyrillos. 45% of Independents are undecided.
57% of respondents said they haven’t heard of Kyrillos. Of those who have heard of him, 22% have no opinion of him, 16% have a favorable opinion and only 5% have an unfavorable opinion.
In contrast, 20% of respondents have never heard of Menendez. 20% of those who have heard of him have no opinion and 23% have an unfavorable opinion. Only 36% have a favorable opinion of Menendez. These are very week numbers for an incumbent.
The challenge for Kyrillos is to get known with Independent voters and to do so favorably. Given Menendez’s $10.3 million to $1.9 million cash advantage (as of June 30) Kyrillos may need to save someone from a burning building or get a gay activist group to attack him unfairly in order to meet the challenge.