Chris Christie’s Presidential Hopes Dry Up as His Popularity Continues to Plummet

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Scandal plagued New Jersey Governor Chris Christie woke up to more bad news this morning. As he attempts to fend off allegations that he knew about the George Washington Bridge lane closures and that his office played politics with Sandy relief funds, The Governor’s popularity has taken a nose dive nationally. A new NBC/Marist poll shows that his net favorability ratings have dropped 23 percentage points in three months. In October, he was viewed favorably by 33 percent of Americans, while just 17 percent had a negative opinion of the New Jersey Governor. Now only 22 percent view him favorably compared to 29 percent with an unfavorable opinion of the Governor.

Christie has seen a double digit decline in popularity form every demographic category except self-identified Republicans. Republican voters are the only group that still has a favorable opinion of Chris Christie. Even among Republicans, the Governor’s approval has lost ground however. 32 percent of Republicans give Christie favorable marks and 20 percent view him negatively. In October, Christie’s favorable rating with Republicans enjoyed a larger 38/19 favorable to unfavorable spread.

The drop in support for Chris Christie has been sharpest with African-American voters and Democrats. In October, black voters viewed Christie favorably by a 45/6 spread. Now his numbers are under water 22/25 with African-Americans.  Democrats viewed Christie favorably by 13 points in October (30/17). Now Democrats have a negative opinion of Chris Christie by lopsided 22 percentage points (15 percent favorable to 37 percent unfavorable).

Chris Christie has long been considered the favorite presidential hopeful for Republican “moderates” and “mainstream conservatives”. Prior to the recent scandals surrounding his associates in the Governor’s office, he polled competitively in hypothetical match-ups with Democrat Hillary Clinton. However, his popularity has taken a nose dive since the George Washington Bridge and the withholding Sandy relief aid scandals broke.

With Governor Christie’s poll numbers diving to new depths, the Republican Party should be seeking a new standard bearer for the “moderate” wing of the Party. Chris Christie’s dismal poll numbers show that he is increasingly disliked by the American people. With his unfavorable ratings reaching rock bottom, Chris Christie’s presidential aspirations are drying up and leaving a vacuum in the shrinking centrist section of the Republican Party.

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