New Jersey Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine, who seriously trailed Republican nominee Chris Christie in polls over the summer but has caught up in the past few weeks, has reportedly seen a heavy increase in White House involvement in his campaign during that same period of recovery.
The Politico reports that the White House sent senior adviser David Axelrod and political director Patrick Gaspard to New Jersey in August, to express the White House’s concerns about the race. One Corzine aide said there was a message being sent that Corzine should consider dropping out of the race — which Corzine never would have done — but that allegation was denied by White House officials.
Corzine did end up replacing his pollster, Mark Mellman, with Obama pollster Joel Berenson, who is also experienced in New Jersey politics. In the time since then, Corzine has focused his attacks against Christie on key issues like health care — especially his accusation that Christie’s health insurance proposals would result in women losing mammogram coverage — and allegations of Christie abusing his office as U.S. Attorney.