“Recent polling confirms” that Gov. Chris Christie (R) has made “enormous strides” with black voters. In 2009, Christie won “just 9 percent of African-American voters.” In a Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday, Christie “earns 36 percent of the black vote. … To put that standing in recent historical perspective, no Republican presidential, Senate, or gubernatorial candidate in the state Jersey has topped 17 percent of the African-American vote in more than two decades.”
If Christie wins around 30% of the black vote this November, “it will give him a powerful 2016 talking point with Republicans voters from New Hampshire to Nevada, who will be eager to nominate someone with a wide enough appeal to regain the White House after the GOP’s years in the political wilderness.”
Christie spokesman Kevin Roberts: “One of the things we’re most proud of in this campaign is that we’re really playing on our opponent’s turf. That has as much to do with the governor’s personality as it does with the way he’s governed for the last three years. He didn’t get into office and ignore inner cities and urban areas.” (RealClearPolitics)
CHRISTIE UP 18: In a new Kean University/Pulse Opinion Reserach (IVR) poll (Sept. 19; 1,000 LVs; +/- 3.1%), Christie leads state Sen. Barbara Buono (D), 52-34%.
MITT HIT: Buono on Wednesday linked Christie’s economic policies to fprmer Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R). Buono: “It’s the Romney economy in a fleece. We know where that has left us. … At the bottom of the barrel.” (Bergen Record)
BUONO TARGETS CHRISTIE ON GAY MARRIAGE: Buono also said Wednesday that Christie’s “opposition to gay marriage is ‘purely political’ and not about protecting the institution of marriage from lawmakers.” Buono: “Every single decision he makes is based on whether he thinks it will advance or damage his standing in the Republican primary for president.” (Newark Star-Ledger)
— Kevin Brennan
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Hillary Clinton may have the Democratic nomination sewn up, but Bernie Sanders apparently isn't buying it. Buoyed by a poll showing them in a "virtual tie," Sanders is "holding three rallies on the final day before the state primary and hoping to pull off a win after a tough week of election losses and campaign layoffs."
As unbound delegates pledged to Ted Cruz watch him "struggle to tread water in a primary increasingly dominated by Trump, many of them, wary of a bitter convention battle that could rend the party at its seams, are rethinking their commitment to the Texas senator."
"The confrontation between debt-swamped Puerto Rico and its creditors is intensifying as the U.S. territory will default on payments due Monday, deepening the island's financial crisis and placing additional pressure on Congress to intervene." The amount of the default is estimated at $422 million.
Nikki Haley. Jeb Bush. Scott Walker. Lindsey Graham. John Kasich. The list is growing ever longer of Republicans who say they wouldn't even consider becoming Donald Trump's running mate. "The recoiling amounts to a rare rebuke for a front-runner: Politicians usually signal that they are not interested politely through back channels, or submit to the selection process, if only to burnish their national profiles."
"Donald Trump holds a 15-point lead over Ted Cruz in the potentially decisive May 3 presidential primary race in Indiana, according to results from a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll. Trump gets support from 49 percent of likely Republican primary voters — followed by Cruz at 34 percent and John Kasich at 13 percent. If that margin in Indiana holds on Tuesday, Trump would be on a glide path towards obtaining the 1,237 delegates he needs to win the Republican nomination on a first ballot at the GOP convention in July."