It’s still hard to find Republican voters who think New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should get the party’s presidential nomination, but his showing in last week’s debate may be prompting more people to give him a look.

Christie’s favorable rating among Republicans and independents who lean Republican in a CNN poll taken after the debate is 44%, the first time he’s cracked 40% in that category in quite some time.

Christie received good reviews for his performance in the debate last Wednesday, and Seton Hall University political scientist Matthew Hale said Christie has the potential to pick up support from fading contenders.

“I think the uptick in Gov. Christie’s favorables are because people are getting to know the other candidates better and liking them less,’’ Hale said. “Gov. Scott Walker has totally cratered and as a result Gov. Christie may no longer be seen as such a bad option.’’