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Clock ticking down for N.J. Senate candidates to beat out Booker

Democratic New Jersey Senate candidate Rep. Frank Pallone says despite being behind in the polls, he is focused on grassroots efforts and talking to voters.
/ Source: The Daily Rundown

Democratic New Jersey Senate candidate Rep. Frank Pallone says despite being behind in the polls, he is focused on grassroots efforts and talking to voters.

The days are numbered before the New Jersey special election to replace late Sen. Frank Lautenberg, and Democratic candidates vying for the spot are pressing to avoid a Cory Booker blowout.

The latest Quinnipiac University poll, released Aug. 7, shows the Newark mayor dominating the primary field with support from 54% of likely Democratic primary voters. But New Jersey Democratic Rep. Frank Pallone, who had 17% support in that survey, told The Daily Rundown’s Chuck Todd Friday that the poll numbers for the Aug. 13 election are irrelevant.

“I think a lot of people are paying close attention to the issues. I don’t think the polls are really meaningful at this point,” Pallone said.

Pallone also fought back against criticism that he is too much of a Washington insider to represent the interests of New Jersey.

“This notion that you’re in Washington and you can’t accomplish something is simply not true and it’s certainly not true for me,” said Pallone.

He also noted that, with an off year election in August, turnout is likely to be low though he continues to focus on “direct contact” and grassroots efforts to urge people to vote.