Christie stabilizing in new poll, but few believe he's clear from scandal
April 2nd, 2014
02:25 PM ET
9 months ago

Christie stabilizing in new poll, but few believe he's clear from scandal

Updated 4:19 p.m. ET, 4/2/2014

(CNN) – Gov. Chris Christie's approval ratings appear to be stabilizing in New Jersey after they dropped significantly following the George Washington Bridge controversy, according to a new survey.

The Monmouth University/Asbury Park Press poll was conducted after a review commissioned by Christie's administration cleared the New Jersey governor of any wrongdoing in the bridge controversy.

According to the poll, 51% of New Jersey adult residents approve of the job Christie is doing as governor, up slightly from 50% in February. In January, his approval rating was 59% and even higher at 65% in December before the scandal went viral. Forty-one percent now say they disapprove, compared to 44% in February and 32% in January.

Fifty-four percent have heard about the new report, which was released last week and led by Randy Mastro of the Gibson Dunn & Crutcher law firm.

But of those who are aware of the report's findings, a little less than a third (30%) consider the investigation to be fair and unbiased.

According to the survey, 52% say the report was simply done to improve Christie's reputation.

The internal probe found that two top Christie appointees orchestrated traffic jams near the bridge in Fort Lee last year. A state legislative committee and the U.S. Attorney's Office are also looking into the incident and whether it was political retribution against the town's Democratic mayor for not endorsing Christie for re-election.

The recently released report cleared Christie of having any knowledge of the matter until after it all occurred, a point the governor has made previously.

But the saga has called into question his sometimes brash leadership style and the potential 2016 presidential contender saw his poll numbers dramatically fall both at home and nationwide.

"The bleeding has stopped for now. The poll was conducted after the Mastro report was released, but this does not seem to be the reason why Christie's ratings have stabilized. In fact, few New Jerseyans agree with the report's conclusions," Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a news release.

Thirty-two percent say the governor has been completely honest about his knowledge of the lane closures, while 61% say he has not been honest. Those numbers were relatively the same in February.

Public opinion also barely moved from February on the question of whether Christie is more concerned about his day job or his political future. Thirty-five percent say he's more concerned with governing, unchanged from February, while 54% say he's thinking more about his future, down slightly from 56% two months ago.

The poll was conducted from March 30 to April 1 by telephone with 803 New Jersey adults. The sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.


Filed under: Chris Christie • New Jersey • Polls
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House

    It's completely clear to me that a 1/3 of the NJ population are gullible idiots.

    April 2, 2014 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  2. Tony

    I thought Christie's lawyers cleared him. Maybe Christie needs to hire better lawyers.

    April 2, 2014 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  3. Tony D

    But wait, the Democrats have yet to spend tens of millions more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt to smear Christie when any sane person knows he had nothing to do with it.

    But when smear and lies are all you got, you go with it. The usual Democrat mantra.

    April 2, 2014 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  4. TNPatriot

    Wow...he favorable rating went up 1% and 57% of those with favorable rating know little to Nothing about the Bridge incident! he favorable rating are still Down 14% from December.

    April 2, 2014 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  5. bill

    Dutch. Does that 1/3 include obama people? Welcome to the 3rd grade.

    April 2, 2014 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  6. Ol' Yeller

    Let's see how stable his poll numbers are when the people he threw under the bus agree to testify against him in exchange for immunity. Though I'm sure we would still have diehard partisans who find nothing wrong with what he did, since hids targets were just Democrats.

    April 2, 2014 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  7. TONE

    @bill

    Dutch. Does that 1/3 include obama people? Welcome to the 3rd grade

    NO but new jersey voters are idiots anyway look who is their governor,they also voted against their own self interest and complain after.

    April 2, 2014 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  8. Tampa Tim

    It always nice to have someone of the 3rd grade right wing mentality on the welcoming committee.

    April 2, 2014 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  9. TONE

    @bill

    Dutch. Does that 1/3 include obama people? Welcome to the 3rd grade

    republican voters were always in the third grade anyway.

    April 2, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  10. Tony

    "But wait, the Democrats have yet to spend tens of millions more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt to smear Christie when any sane person knows he had nothing to do with it."

    Democrats HAVE YET TO SPEND tens of million more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt. You mean the witch hunt has not started, then?

    April 2, 2014 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  11. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Do people actually believe he's innocent because a law firm HE hired said so??? Really people? And anyone that thinks he didn't know exactly what was going on in the office next door to him is lying. And if by some minuscule reason he didn't know, I'd say he is the most incompetent governor I've ever heard of. But he is the typical republican, get caught and play the victim.

    April 2, 2014 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  12. Malory Archer

    Tony D

    But wait, the Democrats have yet to spend tens of millions more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt to smear Christie when any sane person knows he had nothing to do with it.

    But when smear and lies are all you got, you go with it. The usual Democrat mantra.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Right on Tony D – we should just take the word of the attorneys chrstie hired – at taxpayer expense BTW – to "investigate" him. In fact, I think we should extend that policy to EVERYONE whose EVER been accused of a crime – including paying for high-priced attorneys to announce that they have investigated and their clients are all innocent!

    April 2, 2014 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Tony D

    But wait, the Democrats have yet to spend tens of millions more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt to smear Christie when any sane person knows he had nothing to do with it.

    But when smear and lies are all you got, you go with it. The usual Democrat mantra.
    ----------------------------------
    If Christie is innocent, then he is the most incompetent governor in recent history, which over the long run, is worse than him being found guilty. At least if you're guilty you can do your time and apologize. There's no redemption for incompetence.

    All of his innermost circle has been implicated, and most are no longer employed. The same is true for some of the MOST important political appointees that come with the job, that would be the Port Authority appointees. They're all implicated and half of the them are gone. In fact, the governor's report cleared the Port Authority chief, yet he still resigned after the report came out. The report is laughable because the investigators did not collect evidence from the top five people involved, which means no phone calls or testimony.

    April 2, 2014 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  14. S.B. Stein

    Once he shows everything that was used to write the report and ALL INVOLVED people are interviewed by the US attorney and the legislative committee, then there will be less of a problem. I think that he should have paid for this himself or had the election campaign pay for it because I don't like that I, a resident, had to fund that.

    April 2, 2014 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  15. Ron L

    What we have learned about Gov. Christie is behind all that BRAVADO is a VERY POOR manager. I am glad to see it happen now before he was able to win a position of even more power. He is still a bully and lacks the temperament to become President.

    April 2, 2014 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  16. bcrunner

    Tony D

    But wait, the Democrats have yet to spend tens of millions more taxpayer dollars on their witch hunt to smear Christie when any sane person knows he had nothing to do with it.

    But when smear and lies are all you got, you go with it. The usual Democrat mantra.
    *******************************************************************************************************************************
    Please tell us. Is "Time for some traffic problems" a smear? a lie? At this point we don't know Christie's involvement. However, even if he was not involved, people in his intermost circle did something illegal. And his report did not tell us why they did it. The report only tried to clear him. Can you imagine if the White House Chief of Staff had said in an e-mail "Time for cover up Bengazi" .. what you guys would have done? You would have impeached the president already. Also, the report says that Weildstein did not tell him about the traffic problems during their meeting while they were happening because he was too busy talking to people, signing autographs, etc. Did you see the pictures? He, Weildstein and Sampson are laughing it up and having a good time...

    April 2, 2014 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  17. salty dog

    Fat boy is mad because the other investigation was not halted, they get so testy when they can't run everything. Bury him Ms. Kelly, please!

    April 2, 2014 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  18. salty dog

    He obviously thinks Kelly will be the one to talk, he's trying to discredit her already, with her acting strange, and a soured relationship with her cohort. I hope he offends her enough to talk, she likely fears for her life, you know, like Vince foster did, just saying.

    April 2, 2014 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    When Christie's numbers stay the same, the MSM says "stabilize."

    When Obama's stay the same, they say "stagnate."

    Any questions? IOKIYAR

    April 2, 2014 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  20. Sniffit

    "It's completely clear to me that a 1/3 of the NJ population are gullible idiots."

    To be fair, the GOP/Teatrolls are consistently able to pull approximately 23%-27% of the population in their favor based solely on party affiliation and loyalty no matter what, not to mention dogmatic adherence to the ideology. That's not being gullible per se, because these are people who, even if you convinced them Christie's lawyers' "report" was complete crap, they just wouldn't care anyway. In fact, polls showed that there's about 5% of them who actually said they were more likely to vote for Christie EVEN IF HE DID IT (i.e., the idea of abuse of power to get revenge on Dems gets them moist). So, that leaves about 5%-10% of the NJ population that's gullible hehe

    April 2, 2014 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  21. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Thirty-two percent say the governor has been completely honest about his knowledge of the lane closures, while 61% say he has not been honest. Those numbers were relatively the same in February."

    Oh. But I thought he has exonerated himself. So which is it: 61% believe he didn't know anything or they believe he isn't honest in his self-exoneration?

    Ah, well. Who really cares.

    April 2, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |