And a full 71 percent of those polled in the Quinnipiac survey say Lautenberg's age might make it too difficult for him to do his job. Only 21 percent say it gives him wisdom for the job.


Overall, 36 percent of those polled feel the senator deserves to be reelected, while 36 percent do not; broken down by party, however, 48 percent of Democrats believe he should be reelected, while 29 percent say he shouldn't, and nearly a quarter aren't sure.

That indicates that if Lautenberg does run, he'll have to do just as much work persuading his base that he deserves the job as he'd have to do winning crossover voters, a worrisome position for any incumbent looking at reelection.

Still, more than a quarter of those polled say they haven't heard enough about Booker to make up their minds about him. Though 54 percent said they view him favorably, the 29 percent who don't know enough about the Newark mayor could offer an opponent the opportunity to define Booker if he or she jumps into the race early on.

Lautenberg also comes in behind Booker on favorability; only 42 percent of those polled view him favorably, while 32 percent view him unfavorably and 23 percent say they haven't heard enough about the senator.

Lautenberg has remained tight-lipped about his 2014 intentions, but with continued polls like this, he might need to make a decision soon to effectively counter Booker. 

The poll was conducted from Jan. 15-21 among 1,647 registered voters and has an overall margin of error of plus or minus 2.4 percent. Sections polling only Democrats included 616 Democratic voters and have a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent.