Poll: Clinton, Christie basically tied in Virginia
March 3rd, 2014
10:34 AM ET
7 months ago

Poll: Clinton, Christie basically tied in Virginia

(CNN) – A new poll in the crucial battleground state of Virginia indicates voters in the commonwealth have a more favorable view of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie than other potential GOP presidential candidates.

And if Christie were to overcome the traffic scandal that's dogging his administration, he would be considered the best potential match against Hillary Clinton in Virginia, according to the Christopher Newport University survey released Monday.

The poll, like virtually every other survey, indicates Clinton would have a commanding lead in the Democratic primary, with 66% of Democrats and independents who lean towards the Democratic party in Virginia saying they'd vote for the former secretary of state over Vice President Joe Biden at 19%, or Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts at 7%.

On the Republican side, Christie has the highest marks among voters in terms of favorable ratings. While Clinton is the only potential contender to top 50% (with 51% saying they view her in a favorable light), Christie comes close at 46%. Among Republicans, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush follows behind at 30%.

The distance between Christie and Bush narrows, however, when voters are asked who they would vote for in the GOP primary. No potential candidate tops 20%. Christie comes in at 19% with Bush slightly behind at 18%.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a 2008 Republican White House candidate, and 2012 GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan each get 13% support. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, comes in at 9%, with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, at 7%; Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, at 4%; and Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin at 3%. Thirteen percent say they're undecided.

Virginia is not considered an early primary state, but the swing state is one of the most important in the general election.

If the GOP nominates Christie, he would do the best against Clinton in the commonwealth. She would still edge him by 43%-41%, but the two percentage point margin falls within the poll's overall sampling error, leaving them statistically tied.

If the election were held today, Paul would be the second best match against Clinton, though the Kentucky senator would still fall behind with 40% to her 47%.

The survey marks good news for Christie, who's seen a drop in his poll numbers since a state legislative committee and the U.S. Attorney's Office began investigating his administration in January over an alleged orchestrated traffic jam near the George Washington Bridge. The governor has denied any involvement in the scheme.

"While no Republican has as dominant a position as Clinton does right now, Chris Christie is the most formidable opponent to Clinton, and it is significant that he is able to keep Clinton's support amongst women below 50 percent," Quentin Kidd, director of the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University, said in a release about the poll.

According to the hypothetical match-up between Clinton and Christie in Virginia, 45% of women would back the former first lady and former U.S. senator, while 38% would support Christie.

Clinton, who also has not announced whether she'll run again for president, would surely be counting on Virginia as a key state for her campaign. She campaigned last year for the commonwealth's new governor, Terry McAuliffe, a longtime friend of the Clintons.

The Wason Center for Public Policy Survey Research Lab at Christopher Newport University conducted the survey from February 23-28 with 901 registered Virginia voters by telephone. The overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.3 percentage points.


Filed under: 2016 • Chris Christie • Hillary Clinton • Polls
soundoff (56 Responses)
  1. salty dog

    Things are pointing to mass corruption, Christie is in deep doo doo right now, way more going on than what's reported on CNN. I watched a segment on the investigation, its only going to get worse, the contracts reek of corruption, million dollar deals on real estate, sold to rich supporters for one dollar.

    March 3, 2014 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  2. Mike

    This is irrelevant. The Tea Party will never let Christie win the nomination.

    March 3, 2014 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  3. Peace

    Oh! please CNN, can you please stop waking up the dead horse? Christie has been politically in an induced comma and very few or none think he can wake up and walk again as a normal politician. If it is the trick to fool around republicans, please proceed. I do not think they are all that stupid to put this man as their best ticket and expect to win the coming General Election.

    March 3, 2014 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  4. Liberal Iowan

    Doesn't matter. GOPTP will never let christie get the nomination anyway.

    March 3, 2014 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  5. Geoff Maguire

    Betting neither one even winds up running

    March 3, 2014 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    For reasons that I am glad that I do not understand, conservatives seem to like scandal plagued politicians. They really seem to like politicians who portray themselves as the victim of witch hunts. Whether or not Christie survives the storm of scandals surrounding his administration remains to be seen. I don't see how. He's either guilty, or woefully incompetent.

    March 3, 2014 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  7. mitchgam

    So, the people of Virginia in this small poll choose a man, without any national or international experience, due to his PR and the R after his name and nothing more.

    No matter if you like or don't like Ms Clinton, this is NOT a good sign for this country.

    March 3, 2014 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  8. Jimmy G

    The fact that Christie is a top contender for republicans is so relevant for what they stand for and for their honesty.

    What they did to themselves weighs much more than what a political enemy could possibly do to them.

    March 3, 2014 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  9. obawendon

    Hillary 2016!

    March 3, 2014 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  10. Humbrrto

    Out of all the people in the USA , this is the best that can be done????

    March 3, 2014 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  11. s

    ZZzzz...ZZzzzz....wake me up in 2016

    March 3, 2014 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  12. Pete

    Only for so long..After this bridge scam and other revelations are uncovered there won't be any challenge from any of the republicans clown circus at all and they know it..The more his skeletons talk the lower Christies polls sink...

    March 3, 2014 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  13. AntiChrist

    Witch which, face would you like? Do you want the pigeon neck or the female who is a hottie?

    March 3, 2014 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  14. Ken in MO

    OMG. This guy is so corrupt! They have investigated Bill and Hillary like mad men and have NEVER found that they did anything wrong...except for the Lewinsky thing. If they investigated any ordinary America as much as they investigated them, we would be in jail. She is just smart....the GOP doesnt like that. Compare her to Palin, Bachman and even Condolessa Rice...she is much smarter. Virginians have to be crazy to support Christie.

    March 3, 2014 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  15. Jme

    Christie is the come back kid. HAAAA!!!!!!!!!!

    March 3, 2014 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  16. John

    Shouldn't we get through the 2014 election before we start focusing on the 2016 election. I mean, the way things are going, America might not even be around to HAVE a 2016 election.

    March 3, 2014 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  17. Dan Bruce

    These results show that Hillary is beatable in a general election. We Democrats would do well to look for a less baggage=endowed candidate. WE can do better than Hillary.

    March 3, 2014 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  18. Martha in CF

    Enough of your polls already!!!!!!! We need to get 2014 out of the way....

    March 3, 2014 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  19. S. B. Stein

    This is too early. Can you please stop with the 2016 speculation. I want to hear about the mid-term election speculation. Will the "teapublicans" screw things up and let the Democrats retain the Senate and take the House? How likely is that.

    Part of the problem is that there isn't enough coverage of the mid-term elections. We need to let people know that they need to vote in every election. Without that, it becomes a government elected by a limited group which may not reflect the full will of the country. I think that there should be a very small tax credit for every eligible voter who does vote.

    March 3, 2014 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  20. Jason Walsh

    Nobody should vote for either of these clowns. If American people truly want the change that was promised in 2008 and 2012, then it's time to stop voting based on party lines. It's time to stop voting like it's Red v Blue. Dems and Repubs have been doing the same shitty job for longer than anyone can recall. Wake up, before it's too late.

    March 3, 2014 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  21. John

    Go Hillary!!

    March 3, 2014 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  22. Heisenberg

    The best thing for America would be for neither of these two to even run.

    March 3, 2014 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  23. jack2

    As a conservative i don't want Christie or the lying Hillary. We need new and better blood

    March 3, 2014 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  24. jose martinez

    this is just great,we have these two ready to lead us.just where,i don't know.hillary is a joke,her act with lover boy billy is old news.christy never ,so he says,ever did anything wrong. vote for me...i will save you from your self's.both should be set out to graze...new ideas,new blood is needed.not these ,who really don't care,they just want the glory and fame.lets face it,we are lost.....

    March 3, 2014 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  25. Silence DoGood

    @AntiChrist
    Witch which, face would you like? Do you want the pigeon neck or the female who is a hottie?
    ---------------
    Access to the internet gives you a portal to all of mankind's recorded knowledge.
    And this is how the average American makes the choice to vote.
    Now I know how "AntiChrist" is going to destroy the World.

    March 3, 2014 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
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