Most of the pundits declared Tuesday night’s debate between Phil Murphy and Kim Guadagno a tie.
While Murphy appeared progressive, Guadagno skillfully deflected the almost-universal disdain for Chris Christie while at the same time espousing his right-wing agenda.
But none of this really matters.
In a low-turnout off-year election, all bets are off. Readers of Blue Jersey may be energized by Murphy’s pro-environment agenda, his attention to jobs and the middle class, and his general commitment to progressive values, that’s not enough in a state where unaffiliated voters make up a large part of the electorate.
And while a bruising Democratic primary ended with all of the also-rans endorsing Murphy, judging from comments on social media, a large number of Democrats are not willing to jump on the Murphy bandwagon.
Whether he deserves it or not, Murphy is saddled with his association with Goldman Sachs, his wealth, and the way-too-early start of his campaign.
Polls show Murphy with a commanding lead. But if you ask President Hillary Clinton, polls don’t necessarily reflect what happens on Election Day.
Are we due for another November surprise like we had last year? Possibly. Even without Russian intervention, we may once again see the pollsters beating their chests and doing their mea culpas on that Wednesday morning in November.
Take nothing for granted. Even if Murphy was not your first choice, remember that good Democrats bailed out of the election process after Bernie lost the nomination – and look what happened.
If you’re supporting a third party candidate like Gina Genovese or Seth Kaper-Dale, acknowledge the fact that these are good people, but that a vote for them would be a vote for Guadagno in a close election.
Whether of not the incident in the debate with the Rutgers student who wasn’t heard was staged or real, Guadagno handled it well. She speaks Jersey while Murphy speaks New England. These are small factors that may seem irrelevant to making a sane and logical choice, but if people voted on sanity and rationality, we wouldn’t have a clueless sexual predator in the White House today.