Take a look at this photograph… what a good looking man… what a sage pose… is that Nantucket seersucker?  (only a true member of the establishment can wear seersucket, and then only when he attains a certain age, notice the drape).  Central casting… send us a modern Walter Cronkite.  See Mr. Carroll’s biography, at the end of this column.

And now for the most breathtakingly biased statement from a pollster this year:

“New Jersey likely voters support same-sex marriage any way they can get it. By almost 2-1, including a lot of Republicans, they want Gov. Christie to drop his appeal of a judge’s ruling so same-sex couples can marry in the Garden State.” (Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute)

Read Mr. Carroll, and one would think that there was a queue tens of thousands long just waiting to be married — like these same proponents claimed about civil unions, which has managed in the years so far to get just above 3,000 couples.  3,000 couples out of 8.8 million people does not represent a population demanding something “any way they can get it”.  You do yourself an injustice, Mr. Carroll.

Mr. Carroll asked two very specific questions about same-sex marriage AND Governor Christie AND the judiciary AND the legislature.  How an individual respondent feels about each of these individually and the relationship of one to another necessarily shades the answers to these questions.  Here are the questions:

As you may know, a state judge recently ruled that same-sex couples have the right to marry in New Jersey. Governor Christie opposes same-sex marriage and is appealing the decision to the State Supreme Court. Do you think Governor Christie should appeal the decision or drop his appeal and allow same-sex couples to get married in New Jersey?

 As you may know, the state legislature has passed a bill that would allow same-sex couples to get married in New Jersey. Governor Christie has vetoed that bill. Do you think the state legislature should override Governor Christie’s veto so that same-sex couples are allowed to get married in New Jersey or not?

The first question produced a result of 32% (should appeal) to 61% (should not appeal) to 7% (don’t know/no opinion).  The second came in at 59% (yes, override), 33% (no), to 8% (don’t know/no opinion).

Now look at what happens when a different set of questions are asked:

A poll was conducted September 24-26, in five legislative districts in New Jersey.  Two were what could be described as conservative-Republican, two as moderate-Republican, and one as a “swing” district (currently held by a Democrat).  The poll was conducted by Magellan Strategies.  The poll targeted “likely” voters from a voter registration mix that reflected general election turnout.

The poll touched on issues such as the minimum wage, the Second Amendment, and same-sex marriage.  On same-sex marriage, the results were surprisingly consistent throughout the Republican held districts and in the Democrat district the numbers indicated a more socially conservative electorate, which was an even greater surprise.

Thinking now about the issue of same-sex marriage……………….

T6. As you may know, New Jersey is suffering from high unemployment and record housing foreclosures. Recently Democratic legislative leaders held a press conference to announce that the passage of same-sex marriage is New Jersey’s number one priority. Knowing this, do you agree or disagree with the Democratic legislative leaders?

18% Agree

77% Disagree

5% Unsure or no opinion


T7. Do you agree or disagree that the state legislature should focus on jobs and the economy instead of same-sex marriage?

81% Agree

13% Disagree

6% Unsure or no opinion


T8. Do you agree or disagree that the state legislature should work on reducing property taxes instead of same-sex marriage?

83% Agree

13% Disagree

4% Unsure or no opinion


T9. Some people have suggested that same-sex marriage should be placed on the ballot so that the people of New Jersey could vote whether to allow it or not. Do you support or oppose placing same-sex marriage on the ballot so that voters can decide this issue?

63% Support

29% Oppose

8% Unsure or no opinion


T10. As you may know, New Jersey currently has a civil union law that provides same-sex couples with all the legal protections of marriage. Knowing this, do you support or oppose the civil union law for same-sex couples?

60% Support

29% Oppose

11% Unsure or no opinion


T11. As you may know, a little over 3,000 same-sex couples have taken advantage of the civil union law in New Jersey. Now others are demanding that same-sex couples be allowed to marry as a husband and wife do. Knowing this, do you support or oppose same-sex marriage?

38% Support

51% Oppose

11% Unsure or no opinion

Maybe Mr. Carroll should try asking different questions that the two he posed?  Maybe he should ask the questions from the Magellan Poll. . . if for no other reason, intellectual curiosity?

And as for statements like “any way they can get it” — get hold of yourself, Mr. Carroll, you are an academician, not a marketing rep.


Mr. Carroll’s credentials:

Maurice “Mickey” Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, brings more than 40 years of experience as a political writer and columnist for New York and New Jersey newspapers.

Carroll is the chief spokesperson for the New York State, New York City and New Jersey polls and works with Douglas Schwartz to develop, analyze and present the results of the many polls conducted by Quinnipiac.

Carroll’s experience as a journalist includes work with The New York Times, Newsday, the New York Post, the Passaic Herald-News, the Jersey Journal and the Newark Star-Ledger.

Carroll taught journalism at Columbia University, New York University and Montclair State College and presently teaches in Quinnipiac’s mass communications program. He has a BA in journalism from the University of Notre Dame.



If you want to know why Barbara Buono is 20 points behind Governor Chris Christie take a look at what she’s been talking about since winning her primary.  A word check of more than 130 print and digital publications links “Barbara Buono” with phrases like “same-sex” (247), “gay” (311), “marriage” (368), “sexual” (155), “sex” (318), and “abortion” (107).

While polling shows the economy and property taxes to be utmost in voters’ minds, they don’t appear to be on candidate Buono’s mind.  The same publications link “Barbara Buono” to these phrases, but generally less often:  “property tax” (253), “tax cut” (122), “unemployment” (334), “job creation” (51), “foreclosure” (53), “homeless” (29), “reform” (178), and “ethics” (48).

The problem with Barbara Buono is that she is taking her campaign advice from Senate President Steve Sweeney.  It was Sweeney who set the tone of the session last year, making same-sex marriage his party’s “number one priority”.


Sweeney did this in the face of brutal and continuing economic troubles – with New Jersey’s unemployment rate at 9.2 percent and 60,000 New Jersey workers set to lose their unemployment benefits.  He did it with New Jersey’s foreclosure rate at 8.2% – second only to Florida and with building/construction sector unemployment at 14.7 percent.

Sweeney showed a stunningly callous disregard for the working people of New Jersey and advised Buono to do the same.  The reason he gave was that making same-sex marriage the state’s top priority would be good for Democrat Party fundraising.  Remember what Sweeney told the editorial board of the Bergen County Record:

Sweeney suggested the Buono campaign refrain from personal attacks on Christie and instead focus on social issues – such as Christie’s opposition to gay marriage – that he said would have traction among New Jerseyans. (Record, 05/10/13)

Stupid Barbara Buono took Sweeney’s advice.  The following month Buono echoed Sweeney by making same-sex marriage her top priority:  “The first bill that I sign.”

State Sen. Barbara Buono of Middlesex County, Christie’s Democratic opponent in November’s gubernatorial election, staked out a strong position in support of gay marriage.

“When I’m governor, that will be the first bill that I sign,” Buono said after an event in Newark. (Record, 06/26/13)

Sweeney and Buono have continued to disregard the plight of working people – even after a report earlier this month showed poverty in New Jersey is at a 52 year high.  That’s one out of every four New Jersey residents in poverty – more than two million people.  And if you think it is just the big urban centers suffering from poverty, think again.  Look at the poverty level in the counties that make up Steve Sweeney’s own district:

  • 37 percent of the people in Cumberland County live in poverty, the second highest in the state.
  • In Salem County, 30.8 percent of its people live in poverty.
  • Even in Gloucester County, Sweeney’s home, the rate is – at 18.5 percent – above the national poverty rate of 15 percent.

A record high of more than 630,000 children — 31.2 percent — live in poverty in New Jersey.  32.8 percent of the state’s 18 to 24 year olds now live in poverty.  Why is attention being taken away from them and the focus placed on social issues?  Why is same-sex marriage the “top priority” for Steve Sweeney and Barbara Buono?

That’s easy to answer – it is about money.


After Steve Sweeney derailed the 2010 Senate vote on same-sex marriage, Garden State Equality’s Steve Goldstein publicly threatened the Democrat Party:

New Jersey’s most influential gay civil-rights group pledged Friday to withhold financial support from Democratic lawmakers who did not vote for the same-sex marriage bill.

The lack of campaign contributions will cost future candidates hundreds of thousands of dollars, according to Steven Goldstein of Teaneck, founder and director of Garden State Equality.

“The gay ATM is done,” Goldstein said. “In a bigger sense, the progressive [issues] ATM is done.” (Record, 01/08/10)

A month later, they made it official:

 Smarting over the state Senate’s refusal to pass marriage equality and disillusioned at the moment with the Democratic Party majority, Garden State Equality’s 85-member Board of Directors unanimously decided against giving financial contributions to political parties and their affiliated committees.  (, 02/08/10)

Senate President Steve Sweeney got the message, flipped his vote on same-sex marriage, ignored the cries of the working poor, the unemployed, the homeless and about to be homeless, and held a press conference to announce that same-sex marriage was his “number one priority”.  Senator Buono followed suit and promptly put her campaign into a power dive.

But it is working out O.K. for Sweeney.  He was just out on the West Coast, in California, collecting a quarter million dollars in campaign cash.  So all must be forgiven and Sweeney is pocketing trouser-fills of cash.  Money and politics.  Makes you want to vomit, doesn’t it?