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5 takeaways from Election Day 2021

Phil Murphy
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy |

New Jersey gubernatorial election race remains too close to call

Heading into Election Day, the RealClearPolitics average of New Jersey gubernatorial race polling found incumbent Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy leading his Republican challenger, Jack Ciattarelli, by 7.8 percentage points. But when the votes were counted Tuesday night, the race appeared to be much closer than anticipated.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Murphy had a lead of roughly 17,000 votes, or approximately 0.7%, over Ciattarelli, with 89% of the expected vote reporting. 

The dead heat in the New Jersey gubernatorial race represents a significant swing from the 2020 presidential election, where President Joe Biden won the state by nearly 16 percentage points.

The shift reflects the drop in Biden's approval rating nationwide and in New Jersey. A Monmouth University poll released last week found the president's approval rating six points underwater in the Garden State, where 43% of residents approve of his job performance and 49% disapprove.

In addition to the gubernatorial race, New Jersey voters selected candidates to represent them in the state Senate and state General Assembly. Republicans are poised to make gains in both chambers but will likely fall short of a majority. 

Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

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