The following analysis of the National Election Pool/Edison Research exit poll was provided for NJN News and the Gannett New Jersey Newspapers:
In most states, Democrats tend to do better among women, while Republicans fare well with male voters. That hasn’t been the case in recent New Jersey elections, though. Both Barack Obama and Frank Lautenberg in 2008 and Bob Menendez in 2006 won over both men and women voters.
That Garden State gender scenario did not play out in today’s race for governor. Jon Corzine did take 50% of the female vote compared to 45% who went for Chris Christie. But Christie won the male vote by 53% to 40%.
Trends since the 2006 election also indicate that Democratic candidates in New Jersey easily win among younger and middle age adults, while Republicans tend to gain a slim advantage among senior citizen voters. In this year’s race for governor, Democrat Jon Corzine was only able to claim a decisive win among voters under age 30, where he bested Christie by a 57% to 36% margin. The 30 to 44 year old age group went for Christie by 50% to 44%. New Jersey voters age 45 to 64 were more divided, 48% for Christie to 46% for Corzine. Christie, though, was the clear winner among those age 65 and older by a sizable 55% to 40% margin.
While Corzine picked up typical Democratic margins among minority voters, Christie did particularly well among whites. Black voters went for Corzine over Christie by 88% to 9% and Hispanics did the same by 65% to 32%.
Christie won the white vote, though, by 25 points – 59% to 34%. Typically, New Jersey Democrats run about even or only a few points behind the GOP candidate among this group of voters.