The Washington Times' Donald Lambro claimed that New Jersey state Sen. Thomas H. Kean Jr., a Republican, "is running even" with Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) in the 2006 New Jersey senatorial race. In fact, the most recent polling shows that Menendez is six points ahead of Kean.
In his May 4 "Commentary" column, Washington Times chief political correspondent Donald Lambro claimed that New Jersey state Sen. Thomas H. Kean Jr., a Republican, "is running even" with Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) in the 2006 New Jersey senatorial race. In fact, the most recent polling shows that Menendez is six points ahead of Kean.
From Lambro's May 4 column:
Well, you might say, these are local issues that have little or no impact on the current national political crosscurrents. Not so. Both the sales tax increase and the state's oppressive property taxes are becoming big issues in New Jersey's U.S. Senate race where state Sen. Tom Kean, the Republican candidate, is focusing on nonfederal issues just like these. And it's one of the reasons he is running even with Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez in the polls. "Kean knows President Bush isn't popular in New Jersey, and so far he has decided to focus his campaign on local issues rather than sweeping national concerns," John Fund reported in the Wall Street Journal last week.
A Quinnipiac University poll, conducted April 18-24, asked more than 1,400 registered New Jersey voters: "If the 2006 election for United States senator were being held today and the candidates were Robert Menendez the Democrat and Tom Kean Jr. the Republican, for whom would you vote?" According to the poll, 40 percent said they would vote for Menendez, compared with 34 percent who would vote for Kean.
In January, Lambro cited a months-old GOP poll to falsely claim that "polls show[ed]" Kean was ahead of Menendez by 13 points in the Senate race, as Media Matters for America documented; in fact, more recent, independent polling at that time showed Menendez with a lead ranging from two to six points.
If one were to accept that Lambro's claims about the New Jersey Senate race are accurate, that would mean Kean lost a sizable 13-point poll advantage over Menendez in a mere four months -- something Lambro failed to reconcile, let alone acknowledge.