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NJ Voters Weigh In On Dueling Tax Cut Plans [AUDIO]

New Jersey voters definitely like the idea of spending less of their hard-earned dollars on taxes.

Steve Sweeney and Chris Christie
Governor's Office/Tim Larsen

Governor Chris Christie is pushing a 10% income tax cut. State Senate President Steve Sweeney proposes a 10-percent property tax credit. Quinnipiac University’s newest poll asks Garden Staters what they think of each plan and if given a choice, which one would they prefer.

Jersey voters support Christie’s proposed 10 percent across-the-board state income tax cut 54 – 32%. They also support (57 – 24%), Sweeney’s proposal for a 10% property tax credit for households with an annual income of $250,000 or less.

Given a choice, voters prefer Sweeney’s cut over Christie’s cut by a margin of 49 – 38%. By income, only voters with a household income over $250,000 prefer the income tax cut. Voters in every region, except rural areas, prefer the property tax cut.

“In the big tax-cut debate: Governor Christie’s plan or Senate President Stephen Sweeney’s plan – voters like them both,” says poll director Mickey Carroll. “But in high-property-tax New Jersey, they like Sweeney’s plan more.”

Most recent polls show Jerseyans support a millionaires tax increase. Not this poll. 50% of New Jersey voters agree with Christie’s position against a millionaires’ tax while 47% disagree.

Assembly Democrats propose a 20% property tax credit funded, in part by a millionaires tax. It doesn’t appear that will happen this year so, the poll did not ask about that plan.

New Jersey voters approve (59 – 36%) of the job Christie is doing, his best score ever. Christie is more of a leader, 54% of voters say, while 39% say he is more of a bully. Voters approve (58 – 35%) of the way Christie is handling the state budget.

70% say the New York Police Department (NYPD) is “doing what is necessary to combat terrorism” by gathering information on Muslim organizations and activities in the Garden State. This includes voters in urban areas like Newark and Jersey City. No group measured in the survey disagrees. Voters do agree with Christie (46 – 23%) that the NYPD did not adequately inform New Jersey officials.

Garden Staters disagree with Christie’s criticism of New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly by a margin of 56-32%. The NYPD treats Muslims appropriately, 62% of New Jersey voters say, while 18% say the NYPD targets Muslims unfairly.

“New Jerseyans reject that recent media brouhaha over checking up on Muslims in New Jersey by New York City police,” says Carroll. “Welcome, New Jersey voters tell the cops from across the Hudson. They don’t think the NYPD transgressed jurisdictional lines.”

In the controversy over the State Senate Judiciary Committee’s rejection of Phil Kwon, Christie’s nominee to the State Supreme Court, 75% of voters have no opinion.

Carroll explains, “The political world was stirred by the Senate’s first-ever rejection of a governor’s Supreme Court nominee, but New Jersey voters couldn’t care less.”

From April 3 – 9, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,607 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.4 percentage points. Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones.

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