Poll: Majority of New Jersey voters think Bob Menendez should resign

Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez should resign, New Jersey voters say in a new Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday.

Fifty-two percent of those surveyed say the indicted senator should resign his post, and 54 percent responded that he is not honest or trustworthy. The numbers break down along partisan lines, with more Republicans calling for his departure than any other subset.

Menendez was indicted on federal corruption charges on April 1, accused of using his position as a senator to improve the business interests of an alleged friend and political supporter in Florida, Salomon Melgen, in exchange for campaign donations, private flights and other gifts. Menendez pleaded not guilty to all charges on April 2.

Among Republicans, 61 percent say it is time for the indicted senator to go, compared with 51 percent of independents. Democrats are split on whether Menendez should continue, with 46 percent saying he should resign and 44 percent thinking he should not.

A plurality of voters — 45 percent — said Menendez’s alleged actions constituted illegal activity, while 38 percent said what he did was unethical, but not illegal.

Asked whether they think prosecutors have brought the case against Menendez based on the facts or out of a political motivation, 46 percent said it stems from the facts and 39 percent said it is politically motivated. Among Republicans, 46 percent say it is a fact-based indictment, and 43 percent responded that it is not.

Only 38 percent of Democrats responded that they thought the case had political motives, with 48 percent saying it came about based on the facts.

The latest poll comes a week after another survey found the exact opposite.

A Rutgers-Eagleton poll released earlier this month found that only 34 percent of New Jerseyans thought Menendez should resign, compared to 58 percent who thought he should stay. It should be noted that the poll was conducted March 27-April 3, a period both before and after Menendez’s indictment and subsequent not-guilty plea.

The poll released Thursday was conducted April 9-14 via land lines and cellphones, surveying 1,428 voters in the state with an overall margin of error of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

(From: Politico)

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