A new poll by the Republican-leaning Rasmussen finds that Cory Booker, should he win the Democratic primary, would have a commanding lead over the likely Republican candidate in the special election for the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg's seat. Steve Lonegan, a former mayor and a former leader of the state's chapter of the Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity, is trailing Booker in a potential general election matchup by a margin of 50-33 percent.
The poll also finds Booker with a big lead in the Democratic primary:
Booker, a graduate of Stanford University, Yale Law School and a Rhodes Scholar, currently attracts 54% support in the Democratic primary competition. A Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of the race finds three other candidates far behind. Congressman Rush Holt picks up 11% of the vote, Congressman Frank Pallone draws eight percent (8%), and Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly Sheila Oliver earns five percent (5%) of the vote. Three percent (3%) would prefer some other candidate and 18% are undecided.
Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.