Geraldo Rivera may be “truly contemplating” a run for U.S. Senate in New Jersey but a new poll says voters are already done contemplating supporting him.
A Monmouth University/Asbury Park Press poll found that only 9 percent of voters say they would be very likely to vote for Rivera and just 17 percent say they would be somewhat likely to should he choose to run.
Conversely, a majority 65 percent of voters say they would not be likely to support Rivera, including 51 percent who say they would not vote for him at all.
The Fox News personality made waves after announcing on his radio show that he was seriously considering a Senate run.
“Fasten your seat belt,” he told his audience. “I am and have been in touch with some people in the Republican Party in New Jersey. I am truly contemplating running for Senate against Frank Lautenberg or Cory Booker in New Jersey.”
“I figure, at my age, if I’m going to do it, I’ve got to do it,” Rivera added.
In politics time moves quickly and on Thursday longtime incumbent Senator Lautenberg, 89, announced that he intends to retire.
“I will be traveling to my hometown of Paterson tomorrow to announce that I will not seek re-election in 2014,” Lautenberg said in a statement. “This is not the end of anything, but rather the beginning of a two-year mission to pass new gun safety laws, protect children from toxic chemicals, and create more opportunities for working families in New Jersey.”
But if the poll is any indication, Lautenberg’s departure will only help Newark Mayor Booker, and not Rivera, who lacks popularity even among Republican voters in New Jersey.
Even among GOP voters, just 44 percent say they would be at least somewhat likely to vote for Rivera while 48 percent would be unlikely.
About half of New Jersey voters have formed an opinion of Rivera, and it is evenly divided – 26 percent have a favorable view of him and 27 percent have an unfavorable view. The remaining 47 percent have no opinion.
Booker or anyone else who takes on the opinionated Rivera would have plenty of previous soundbites to use against him. After the shooting death of Trayvon Martin he said the hoodie the teen was wearing caused him to be shot by George Zimmerman. In August of last year he took to Fox and Friends to wonder aloud whether a lesbian cabal was running the Department of Homeland Security.
In his radio show announcement he said he would add nationalizing the controversial “Stop and Frisk” policy used by New York City police to his platform, should he run.
“The way you beat the whole racial profiling problem, you make it specific precinct statistics,” he said. “You can even make it block by block statistics if you want. You can have some objective criteria to beat the racial profiling constitutional problem and I’m telling you Chicago and Philly and the other cities can do what New York did dramatically cutting homicides.”