Poll: Menendez leads GOP challenger by 15 points in NJ Senate race

Poll: Menendez leads GOP challenger by 15 points in NJ Senate race
© Anna Moneymaker

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) has a 15-point advantage over Republican challenger Bob Hugin ahead of Tuesday's election, according to a new poll.

It is just the latest poll to show Menendez with a solid lead ahead of Tuesday's election.

The Quinnipiac University poll published Monday shows Menendez with the support of 55 percent of likely voters, while 40 percent say they're likely to vote for Hugin. Menendez's lead more than doubled from the same poll published last month, which showed him with a 7-point edge.


The incumbent's growing lead can be credited to an increase in support among likely independent voters, the poll found.

Independent voters back Menendez by 14 points, with 53 percent supporting the incumbent and 39 percent saying they plan to vote for Hugin. In the October version of the poll, Hugin had a 7-point advantage among independents.

The poll's results were based on surveys of 1,115 likely voters in New Jersey from Oct. 29 to Nov. 4. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. 

The poll comes after a Stockton University poll published last week showed Menendez with a 12-point lead. Prior to the Stockton poll, most polls showed Menendez with only a single-digit advantage. 

The race between has been closer than expected throughout the campaign, with Menendez seemingly weakened by a 2015 indictment on charges of bribery and fraud.

"While they may hold their nose to cast a ballot for Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Manafort sentenced to total of 7.5 years in prison Acting Defense chief calls Graham an 'ally' after tense exchange William Barr is right man for the times MORE, voters signal they want to keep New Jersey's Senate seat in the 'D' column in a blue state where President Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE consistently remains unpopular," Mary Snow, polling analyst for the Quinnipiac University Poll, said in a statement.

Cook Political Report rates the race as a "toss up."