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New Jerseyans Lukewarm On U-S Senate Race [AUDIO]

Senator Bob Menendez
Ramin Talaie, Getty Images

When it comes to the U-S Senate race in New Jersey, voters are lukewarm on giving Democratic Incumbent Bob Menendez a second term.

That’s according to the Monmouth University/New Jersey Press Media Poll released today which finds that 41percent approve of the job he’s doing while 26 percent disapprove.

Another 33 percent of New Jersey voters have no opinion of him after six years on the job.

“The one saving grace Bob Menendez has is that he’s going to be on the ticket with a President in a state that generally goes blue and votes Democratic in Presidential election years, so this is all going to be about coattails in New Jersey,” said Poll Director Patrick Murray.

When it comes to potential Republican challenger State Senator Joe Kyrillos, who launched his campaign last week, just 20 percent of voters statewide recognize him. Four percent have a favorable opinion and 2 percent do not. “Republicans are hoping for a decent Presidential candidate that will draw more voters to the polls, making it more likely that they’ll vote Republican down the line,” said Murray. “But who that candidate is will make all the difference.”

“We asked if Mitt Romney were the nominee, would you be more or less likely to vote Republican down the line? We found that 32 percent would be more likely, 42 percent would be less likely. Republicans would fare even worse if the nominee is Newt Gingrich. Fifty three percent would be less likely,” said Murray.

The gap is similar among independent voters. Fifty five percent would be less likely to vote Republican with Gingrich at the top of the ticket and 40 percent would be less likely if it were Romney. Even Republicans say they are more likely to defect from the party line or stay home if Gingrich is the nominee.

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