The Boss Doesn’t Rock the Vote:
Tony Soprano Leans Republican

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Republican Response
Democratic Response

While Tony Soprano has made no official endorsement of a Presidential candidate, he appears to lean Republican. According to the most recent poll by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind, 37% of likely voters in New Jersey think that if the TV character were going to vote for President, he’d vote for Bush. Only 26% think he would vote for Kerry; 23% are not sure.

By a two to one margin, Republicans think the TV character would vote Republican: 42% think he would vote for Bush, while only 21% think he’d vote for Kerry. But Democrats are just as likely to think that Soprano would vote for Kerry as for Bush: 35% of likely voting Democrats say the TV character would vote Kerry, while 34% think he’d go for Bush.

Among those who think the most important quality in a presidential candidate is “being a strong leader,” 44% think Soprano would choose Bush while 24% think he’d choose Kerry. But among those who think the most important quality in a presidential candidate is “understanding the concerns of the average person,” 37% think Soprano would choose Kerry while 33% think he’d choose Bush.

Meanwhile, a real life celebrity from New Jersey, rock singer Bruce Springsteen, has endorsed John Kerry but doesn’t seem to have had much effect. Better than two-thirds (70%) of likely voters say his endorsement makes no difference: 7% say his endorsement makes them more likely to vote for Kerry, while 22% say it makes them less likely. Among the crucial independents, only 5% say it makes a positive difference while 12% say it makes a negative difference and 82% say it makes no difference.

Another Garden State celebrity, Joe Piscopo, who has mulled over a run for governor, has some spade work to do. Three-quarters (75%) of likely voters say they have heard of the former comedian from Saturday Night Live. But half of those have neither a favorable nor unfavorable opinion of him. More than half of likely voters (54%) say they would not consider voting for him. Still, his name recognition among likely voters puts him far ahead of Senate President Richard Codey who will presumably become Acting Governor when Jim McGreevey resigns on Nov. 15.

“We asked these questions only partly for fun,” said Peter J. Woolley, Executive Director of the poll and Professor of Comparative Politics at Fairleigh Dickinson University. “What influence celebrities can have on politics is an important question in an era of skyrocketing campaign costs coupled with increasingly restrictive rules on raising money. Celebrities have an advantage over the ordinary citizen in politics since celebrity voices are more easily heard.”

The PublicMind poll of 489 likely voters was conducted from September 23 through September 28 and has a margin of error of +/- 4.5 percentage points.


Poll Analysis


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Copyright © 2004, Fairleigh Dickinson University. All rights reserved. FDU PublicMind Poll [Latest update 041004]