Hot or not: Your take on top politicians
August 5th, 2013
11:06 AM ET
12 months ago

Hot or not: Your take on top politicians

(CNN) – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are hot, hot, hot.

Well, if you consider the low 50s as hot.

According to Quinnipiac University's Thermometer of voter attitudes, the two potential 2016 presidential candidates are considered the top two political leaders viewed favorably by voters.

Surveying 1,468 registered voters, Quinnipiac asked respondents to rate a list of more than 20 names of politicians and other people in the news. They could choose any number between 0 and 100; the higher the number, the more favorable a person feels toward the name.

Christie, a Republican, comes in slightly higher than Democrat Clinton, 53.1 to 52.1, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, in third at 49.2 degrees, and President Barack Obama at 47.6 degrees.

"Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's score is not surprising given her lengthy political career and especially strong support among Democrats and women," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "But Gov. Christopher Christie's rating is impressive given that his experience–less than four years as governor–pales compared to Mrs. Clinton's resume."

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-New York, also makes it high on the list, tying with Obama at 47.6 degrees, though 75% of voters don't know enough about her to give an opinion, Quinnipiac noted.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas follows slightly behind at 46.8 degrees, with 60% giving no opinion. See the full list below.

"What is interesting is that only two of the 22 figures rate better than the absolute middle of the scale, not exactly a ringing endorsement of the nation's political establishment," Brown said in a news release.

Who has the lowest temperature? Overall, the leaders in Congress don't fare too well on the chart.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid falls last at 33.8 degrees, with House Speaker John Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi falling just above him. They all place under 39 degrees.

Breaking it down by party, Christie falls to eighth place when considering Republicans' opinions only. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who gained national recognition while running as Mitt Romney's running mate last year, tops the GOP's list at 68.7 degrees.

Brown noted that Christie's "great strength" is among independent and Democratic voters, who give him a higher rating than they give other Republicans.

"His rating on the Thermometer scale is a good indication of what may face him should he travel the 2016 campaign trail. His tougher problem may be winning the GOP nomination because in most states only registered Republicans are able to vote in party primaries," Brown said.

Other Republicans considered hotter than Christie–in addition to Ryan–include Cruz, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida; Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin; Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky; former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush; and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, who also ran for president in 2012.

On the other side of the political spectrum, it's no surprise that Clinton remains the favorite among Democrats. She comes in at a scorching 77.7 degrees, with Obama just behind at 76.3 degrees.

Interestingly, Vice President Joe Biden, who places lower than Warren among voters overall, is considered four degrees hotter than the first-term senator among Democrats, 69.5 to 65.

The Quinnipiac Thermometer survey was conducted by telephone from July 28 to 31, with a sampling error of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

A separate poll released Monday–but conducted earlier this summer–imagined four hypothetical match-ups in 2016 with Clinton as the Democratic nominee.

According to the Monmouth University poll of registered voters, Clinton wins all four match-ups, with Christie coming the closest and falling behind the former U.S. senator and first lady by four points, 43% to 39%.

When matched against Bush, Clinton beats the former Florida governor, 47% to 37%. She bests Rubio by 11 points, 47% to 36%, and Cruz by 16 points, 48% to 32%.

Monmouth questioned 850 registered voters from June 25-30. The poll has a sampling error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Quinnipiac: The political figures and their scores, in degrees, not percentages (among all registered voters):

- New Jersey Gov. Christie (R) – 53.1
- Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) – 52.1
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts (D) – 49.2
- President Barack Obama (D) – 47.6
- Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York (D) – 47.6
- Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas (R) – 46.8
- Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida (R) – 46.5
- Vice President Joe Biden (D) – 46.2
- Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) – 45.7
- Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) – 45.2
- Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky (R) – 44.8
- New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) – 43.9
- U.S. Rep. Peter King of New York (R) – 43.6
- U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin (R) – 43
- Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) – 41.1
- Former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania (R) – 40.7
- Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) – 40.4
- Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia (D) – 39.4
- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D) – 38.4
- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) – 37.5
- House Speaker John Boehner (R) – 36.7
- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) – 33.8


Filed under: 2016 • Chris Christie • Hillary Clinton • Polls
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Minnie Mouse

    Chris Christie and Hillary Clinton are both in the negative degree temperatures zone at the present time, because neither of them have officially announced that they are running for president.

    If anyone wants to move into the "Hot, Hot, Hot" zone, then they need to start making some announcements to the public to enter into the hot zone. It's all cold for now!

    August 5, 2013 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  2. Wake up People!

    Who wants a bully governor whose own state affairs aren't even in order? But it's ok right Foxlite?

    IOKIYAWM with an R behind your name.....

    August 5, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  3. S.B. Stein

    @Wake Up People! - you are correct in the sense that he can't get his head out of his ideological butt to see what should be cut and what should be raised. I live and work here in the state and find his attitude not typical of NJ nor of what a governor should be. If he were to become president through some fluke, then our allies would be more hesitant to deal with us because he can't be respectfully honest with them.

    August 5, 2013 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  4. just askin

    it is going to get much hotter for hillary clinton and obama once the details of benghazi and their covert gun running to syria gets out. obama and clinton can't get away with lying forever. the dam is starting to break and people are starting to talk. It is amazing what can happen when the lsm starts doing its job instead of being the propaganda wing of the obama adminstration.

    August 5, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  5. Rudy NYC

    just askin

    it is going to get much hotter for hillary clinton and obama once the details of benghazi and their covert gun running to syria gets out. obama and clinton can't get away with lying forever.
    ------------------–
    The hyper-right has been promising that for months and months now. You're starting to sound like those folks who see UFOs.

    August 5, 2013 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  6. freedom

    This is the best America has to offer? Absolutely NOT!

    August 5, 2013 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  7. Wake up People!

    @S.B. Stein, thank you. I don't know a lot about the guy but I have read a lot of things that people from NJ say about him, and none of it's good. But the MSM loves him and refuses to tell the truth.

    August 5, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  8. Thomas

    Boys , I think the glass celling is coming down in 2016 !

    August 5, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  9. Pander Bear

    So essentially this is a completely useless poll.

    August 5, 2013 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  10. Jerry

    Oh, this makes me feel soooo much better...

    August 5, 2013 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  11. Jerry

    Christie is such as minwit he needs to team with clinton... Now that would be a pair..

    August 5, 2013 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |