Poll: Burlco congressional race remains close

A week and a half before the midterms, the race is still a toss up

David Madden
October 25, 2018 - 1:40 pm

Doug Hood/USA TODAY NETWORK

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(WEST LONG BRANCH, NJ) -- With just a week and a half before the midterms, and a new poll shows a South Jersey congressional race continues to be a toss up.

Voters have seen and heard a lot of Republican incumbent Tom MacArthur and Democrat challenger Andy Kim over the last few months. The 3rd congressional district is a key in the state as a whole.

The latest Monmouth University poll hasn’t changed much with Kim up by 2 points, 48 to 46 percent. The last poll, in August, gave Kim a 45 to 44 advantage among likely voters.

"The reason why he’s doing so well in a district that MacArthur has won handily in his prior two races is the Democratic enthusiasm in the Burlington side of that district,” poll director Patrick Murray told KYW Newsradio.

MacArthur is taking the Ocean County side of the district by some 20 points, but Kim has the same advantage in Burlington County. MacArthur has held his own there in the last. Not so much now. Both men are pouring a lot of money into this race, along with party political action committees, given control of the House is very much on the line.

The barrage of advertising seems to have also given Kim an advantage, particularly on MacArthur’s role in altering Obamacare and passing the Trump tax cut.

"Andy Kim has focused on saying that Tom MacArthur is beholden to special interests and our polling is suggesting that image of MacArthur has taken hold,” Murray added. “We have half who say that they think MacArthur does more to help special interests than the average resident in his district.”

MacArthur’s approval rating has also taken a hit, with voters evenly split between liking him, not liking him and having no opinion at all.

The surveyed 363 registered voters in the district was conducted last weekend and has a margin for error of plus or minus 5.2 percent.