Green Room

Re: Christie’s Approval Rating

posted at 11:33 am on November 27, 2012 by

Ed, that Q-poll you wrote about isn’t the only recent survey that has shown Chris Christie floating in the job approval stratosphere.  Last week, Politico reported on a private poll that pegged the governor’s job approval at an unfathomable 77 percent.  The pollster puts that number in context:

“[W]e see the strongest job approval numbers to date for the Governor. Governor Christie has enjoyed approval ratings of between 50%-59% in every single public poll for the last 17 months, very strong numbers in a state as Democrat in New Jersey. And while we have seen his approval and favorability ratings crack 60% in some private polls, this recent poll breaks new ground. … [T]his is all being done in a state with 750,000 more Democrats than Republicans where President Obama was just re-elected by a staggering 17 points.”

As a native New Jerseyan, allow me to add another layer to this: New Jersey voters, as a general rule, detest their statewide elected officials.  Even pols who are re-elected by wide margins win despite mediocre (at best) job approval numbers.  Bob Menendez, our newly re-elected US Senator, has a 51 percent approval rating — a number that spiked just ahead of the election.  For much of 2012, his approval line bounced around in the 30s and 40s.  Menendez’s Senate counterpart, 88-year-old Frank Launtenberg, has seen his job approval and favorability numbers languishing in the 30s for the last several years.  Christie’s two immediate predecessors in Trenton didn’t fare much better; both drew tepid marks from New Jersey voters during their terms in office.  My point is that Christie’s extraordinarily robust ratings aren’t just impressive from a national standpoint; they’re truly exceptional for a statewide office holder in New Jersey.  Sure, his numbers will inevitably slide over the next 11 months, but he kicks off his re-election bid from an unprecedented position of strength in the state.  As Ed mentioned, the timing of these eye-popping numbers is fortuitous for Christie.  Several potential challengers are currently weighing whether they’ll challenge the sitting governor next year, or whether their ambitions would be best served by sitting out for one more cycle.  Guys like Corey Booker might look at Christie’s gaudy stats and decide to take a pass this time around.

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This is all being done in a state with 750,000 more Democrats than Republicans

Duh, because in general Christie is progressive. He has one thing going for him. the fight against unions. But that fight is based on meeting fiscal requirements, not a hatred of unions in general.

astonerii on November 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM

As long as he stays in NJ and doesn’t think he’s forgiven or that he has a future that involves the White House.

Illinidiva on November 27, 2012 at 11:38 AM

Bob Menendez, our newly re-elected US Senator, has a 51 percent approval rating — a number that spiked just ahead of the election.

Hookers are a resume enhancer for liberals.

Flange on November 27, 2012 at 11:40 AM

I think the Christie/Sandy/Obama blame thing is terribly misplaced; I see no reason why he’d need “forgiveness.” Maybe I’ll expand on this in a future post.

Guy Benson on November 27, 2012 at 11:46 AM

Duh, because in general Christie is progressive. He has one thing going for him. the fight against unions. But that fight is based on meeting fiscal requirements, not a hatred of unions in general.

astonerii on November 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM

And your criticism is that he does not hate unions in general? “I hate unions” would not seem to be a winning position….

Priscilla on November 27, 2012 at 11:54 AM

He has one thing going for him. the fight against unions. But that fight is based on meeting fiscal requirements, not a hatred of unions in general.

That’s what it should be based on.

And people, stop calling liberals progressive. There is nothing progressive about liberalism.

Moesart on November 27, 2012 at 11:54 AM

And your criticism is that he does not hate unions in general? “I hate unions” would not seem to be a winning position….

Priscilla on November 27, 2012 at 11:54 AM

No, my criticism is that even his best issue is not even all that grand for conservatives. The rest is simply negative.

astonerii on November 27, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Duh, because in general Christie is progressive. He has one thing going for him. the fight against unions. But that fight is based on meeting fiscal requirements, not a hatred of unions in general.

astonerii on November 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM

Exactly.

Hell, even FDR was against public sector unions. And he’s the most socialist politician of note in American history.

Christie’s views on public sector unions doesn’t make him a conservative any more than it made FDR a conservative.

ButterflyDragon on November 27, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Moesart on November 27, 2012 at 11:54 AM

No, it should be on getting efficient use of tax payer money. Unions work directly against that. It is an incestuous relationship.

astonerii on November 27, 2012 at 11:59 AM

I’ll continue to root for his success in New Jersey…but that’s it. I understand that Republicans in blue states sometimes have to do unpalatable things in order to stay in office, but Christie crossed the line. Your party winning the presidency is more important than preserving your own political career. He could have served his state just as well without pulling the rug out from under Romney. If you’re going to go into politics, you must be prepared to be a good soldier for the party if it calls.

LukeinNE on November 27, 2012 at 12:04 PM

I preferred the other GR posters more than this crew…

OmahaConservative on November 27, 2012 at 12:11 PM

Besides California, the Northeast has the largest share of liberals. Christe is a progressive, therefore a liberal and liberals vote for liberals so there is no shocking revelation here.

savage24 on November 27, 2012 at 12:17 PM

Eh, Christie is not a progressive. He’s got as many conservative bona fides as any blue state GOP guv. I agree with everyone who says that his backstabbing of Romney is unforgivable, and the last thing I want to see is another blue state governor as the GOP nominee in 2016….but the GOP needs to control the statehouses as well, so conservatives should avoid trying to punish everyone who disappoints them by calling for their defeat.

Priscilla on November 27, 2012 at 12:28 PM

Seems to me Palin, as Alaska governor, had a rock solid, soaring 84% approval rating…prior to being nominated as VP.

There’s a reason the word “palinization” has come into common parlance. All the Dem players in that demise are still in place for the pivotal moment Christie needs to be put in his proper place.

They have already started the demonizing process against Rubio.

marybel on November 27, 2012 at 12:50 PM

I understand and can sympathize with most conservative criticisms of Christie, and he still isn’t my first choice for the 2016 Republican nomination (that would be Rubio, and I’m still a huge Paul Ryan fan), but it frustrates me that whenever a Republican succeeds at winning the approval of moderates, we tend to trash that person. I for one love that Christie has high approval ratings and, barring some major stumbles, appears to be cruising to reelection. He is one of the most deft people we have on our side (or, for that matter, either side). In this last election, we had a guy who I thought would be a great president, but he had difficulty actually connecting with people. Christie doesn’t have that problem. He may be no pure conservative, but I don’t think there are a lot of people who can effectively talk about the problems of bloated government as well as Christie can in a way that wins people over. (What’s more, he’s pro-life, which matters to me although it shouldn’t be anyone’s #1 issue, IMHO.) If you would have told me a few years ago that a Republican would get elected governor in a blue state like New Jersey, say things like “you can stop teaching” to a teacher complaining about her pay, and have approval ratings in the 70s, I wouldn’t have believed you. Again, I think we have other great options in 2016 (unlike 2012, where I think Romney was the best option in a bunch of lackluster candidates), but I do think we should not be so quick to dismiss a candidate just because that candidate doesn’t satisfy every requirement in our conservative wish list.

MinnesotaSlinger on November 27, 2012 at 1:31 PM

If there were 750,000 more Repubs than Dems his approval rate would be about 7%.

Herb on November 27, 2012 at 2:29 PM