Star-Ledger endorses Daggett
The Newark Star-Ledger, the largest newspaper in New Jersey, has endorsed independent Chris Daggett for governor.
“The newspaper’s decision is less a rejection of Gov. Jon Corzine and Republican Chris Christie than a repudiation of the parties they represent, both of which have forfeited any claim to the trust and confidence of the people of New Jersey,” the editorial says. “They share responsibility for the state’s current plight.
“Only by breaking the hold of the Democratic and Republican mandarins on the governor’s office and putting a rein on their power will the state have any hope for the kind of change needed to halt its downward economic, political and ethical spiral.
New Jersey needs radical change in Trenton. Neither of the major parties is likely to provide it. Daggett’s election would send shock waves through New Jersey’s ossified political system and, we believe, provide a start in a new direction.
It would signal the entrenched leadership of both parties — and the interest groups they regularly represent — that an ill-served and angry electorate demands something better.”
The Star-Ledger editorial board members obviously weren’t the only ones caught up in Daggett’s performance in the first debate. Problem is, despite that performance, Daggett still isn’t even breaking 20% in the polls, let alone getting the 35-40% that he will need at the VERY MINIMUM to win.
As I’ve written here before, candidates not affiliated even indirectly with either the Democratic or Republican parties almost never win state or federal elections anymore, in large part because elections cost too much. And they especially cost too much in New Jersey, where you have to buy advertising in both the New York (largest) and Philadelphia (fifth-largest) media markets.
Most of the people voting for Daggett will likely be those who are disenchanted with Jon Corzine but, for various reasons, aren’t sold on Chris Christie. This increases Corzine’s chances of winning considerably. In fact, you could argue now that the race is less between Corzine and Christie than it is between Christie and Daggett. Christie can’t afford to have Daggett siphon off any more of his votes.