Virginia voters overwhelmingly say Confederate statues should stay up, according to the Fox News Voter Analysis.
The assessment put voters more in line with Republican nominee Ed Gillespie on the issue in Tuesday's gubernatorial race, even though he was projected to lose to Democrat Ralph Northam. The voter analysis – a new polling technique Fox News is testing to improve coverage – shows the Democratic candidate ended up winning with support from federal government employees as well as non-white voters.
But on the statue debate, voters were more aligned with the Republican. The numbers show 64 percent in Virginia say the Confederate monuments should stay up, while 30 percent say they should be taken down.
Gillespie has said it’s up to local jurisdictions to decide how to handle the controversial statues, while Northam initially said they should be taken down, before easing off that position.
The voter analysis seemed to show voters more in line with Northam on immigration, another big issue in Tuesday’s race. According to the analysis, 57 percent say immigrants do more to help the U.S. than hurt it.
Meanwhile, the analysis shows most voters think the state of the Virginia economy is excellent or good – despite President Trump tweeting Tuesday morning that the economy has been terrible under Democratic control. Despite that optimism, the economy was still a top priority, along with health care.
The voter analysis also reflects some fatigue over this cycle’s tough campaign ads.
Forty-nine percent say Northam has attacked Gillespie unfairly, while an even higher 59 percent say Gillespie attacked Northam unfairly.
The voter analysis showed Gillespie with a big lead with white evangelicals while Northam maintained an equally large lead among non-white voters in the state.
In a race where Democrats tried to tie the Republican candidate to Trump, the analysis showed that 62 percent of voters said the president was not an important factor to their vote.
In New Jersey's gubernatorial race, where Democrat Phil Murphy was projected to defeat GOP Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, almost 70 percent of voters said they believe the Garden State is moving in the wrong direction after eight years of outgoing Gov. Chris Christie.
A majority of voters also said they have a negative view of the state economy with 62 percent giving it a not-so-good or poor rating.
Sixty-five percent of voters said Trump was not a factor in their decision but said Christie was.
The Fox News Voter Analysis is based on a survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago with Virginia/New Jersey registered voters. The poll featured interviews from a probability sample drawn from a registered voter list and interviews from a non-probability sample, and includes both voters and non-voters for enhanced analytical purposes. The data collection was multi-mode (landline, cellphone, and online).