Lonegan Down By 3?

photo via facebook

photo via facebook

Last week the Quinnipiac poll had Cory Booker up in the U.S. Senate race by 12 points and the Monmouth poll had Booker up by 13.

Steve Lonegan’s strategist and pollster Rick Shaftan told SaveJersey that their campaign’s 4 day tracking internal poll has Lonegan down only 3 points, 47%-43%, with two weeks to go before the special election on Wednesday October 16.

In my years observing and participating in New Jersey politics, it’s been rare that an internal poll has proved more accurate than the normally reliable Monmouth or Quinnipiac polls. Adam Geller is the only partisan pollster who I would give more credence to than the best of the independents.

This time could be different.  There is no historical model for predicting how voters will behave on the third Wednesday in October.  There is also no model for predicting how voters still displaced by Superstorm Sandy will behave in the first non-primary election since their homes were destroyed.  More then usual, the pollster’s assumptions and weighting impact the results.

Shaftan admits that his Democratic turnout assumptions are lower than what many others expect. He told MMM that he expects African-Americans will only be 8% of the vote in the senate elections compared to 12% in last year’s presidential election in New Jersey.

Releasing internal numbers that are substantially better than those produced by independent polls is a double edged sword.  The release is intended to excite voters and to convince potential donors that their money won’t be wasted on a lost cause.  On the downside, after the opposition scoffs at the numbers, they can react to them with their own ads or GOTV efforts.

Posted: October 3rd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Cory Booker, Senate Special Election, Steve Lonegan | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments »

3 Comments on “Lonegan Down By 3?”

  1. Bill said at 11:14 am on October 3rd, 2013:

    Let Booker get his pal Christie to help him.Booker is not a real Democrat.We Democrats blow this seat in Aug.

  2. Gene B said at 5:35 pm on October 3rd, 2013:

    Thanks for the accurate analysis of the difficulty of scientific polling in this race. I have enjoyed following your comments on this.

    I have done some minor types of market research in the past. I have been amazed at how proper sampling can do wonders to help project trends.

    In this case, the turnout might be patterned after a primary election. That would mean that there will be more dedicated Democrats than dedicated Republicans going to the polls.

    However, this time, I went out on a limb and previously said that Lonegan has a zero chance in infinity. It was not scientific. It was from Harvard style seat of the pants ESP.

    I really hope that I am wrong. I really hope that Lonegan puts NJ on the map. Rand Paul, Mike Lee and Ted Cruz need help. I really, really want to be the first to acknowledge my error in my prediction. And I am eager and ready to post my prophecy error, right here on MMM.

    I now eagerly await your reporting of the election results so that I can complete my part of the deal.

  3. MoreMonmouthMusings » Blog Archive » Will the Senate Debates Determine the Election? said at 12:20 pm on October 4th, 2013:

    […] yesterday, Washington pundit Stu Rothenberg chastised conservative websites that are excited about Steve Lonegan’s internal poll numbers  suggesting his race to replace the late Senator Frank Lautenberg is in single […]