According to the latest Rutgers-Eagleton poll out Tuesday, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s favorability rating has reached a new high, with a full 50 percent of registered New Jersey voters giving him the thumbs-up. It’s the best rating he’s had since taking office in 2010 — and I gotta’ say, it’s always refreshing when the realities of holding public office actually do something to improve a politician’s public standing.
For the first time, 50 percent of registered New Jersey voters feel favorably toward Christie – an increase of four percentage points since late March. Those with an unfavorable opinion have declined to 39 percent, while 11 percent continue to hold no opinion.
Christie’s job performance grades also have improved as voters become more favorable toward him. The governor received an A or B grade from 46 percent of respondents, up 3 points. Those grading him as D or F fell three points to 29 percent. Almost one-quarter (24 percent) continue to grade him C, which is unchanged since March.
Completing the trifecta of improved ratings, just over half now say New Jersey is going in the right direction, up four points. Meanwhile, “wrong track” responses remain steady at 40 percent, while 9 percent are unsure about how the state is doing. Half of voters also believe things have gotten neither better nor worse.
Interestingly (but perhaps not surprisingly?), it looks like men are a little more receptive to Gov. Christie’s bombastic style than the ladies of New Jersey:
Men primarily have boosted Christie’s favorability; women remain much less positive. The result is a near doubling of the gender gap since the last poll. In late March, 49 percent of men and 43 percent of women were favorable toward Christie. Now, 56 percent of men feel the same while women have barely budged to 45 percent favorable, resulting in an 11 point gap, up from 6 points just over two months ago.
Gov. Christie gave Romney a fairly early endorsement and has so far been one of his most vocal surrogates on the campaign trail, and he’s said that he’d be open to discussing the running-mate possibility. As much as this is likely a reflection of his executive skills, the fact that he’s been such an active and ardent Romney-supporter and that his approval ratings are doing so well can’t be entirely unrelated, right? Not that the solidly presidential-blue Garden State is really in play for 2012, but now that Romney is the chosen GOP nominee, his well-established support at least doesn’t seem to be hurting him.