[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/03/12/art.getty.corzine.jpg caption="A new poll shows Jon Corzine trailing Republican Chris Christie."](CNN) - A new poll of likely voters in New Jersey suggests that Republican gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie has a 12 point lead over sitting Gov. Jon Corzine.
Fifty-three percent of those questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released Tuesday morning said if the election for New Jersey governor were held today, they'd vote for Christie, a former federal prosecutor. Forty-one percent would back Corzine, the Democratic incumbent who's battling for a second term.
Christie's 12 point edge is up slightly from a 10 point lead he held in a Quinnipiac poll conducted a month ago.
The survey indicates Corzine holds the advantage among likely Democratic voters 76 percent to 19 percent, while Christie has an even stronger advantage among, 89 percent to 7 percent, among Republicans. The GOP candidate also holds the edge among independent voters, 64 percent to 28 percent. Christie's showing among independents has increased since last month's poll.
"Good news for Christopher Christie: As voters focus on the campaign, he increases his lead slightly in the match-up against Corzine," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
President Barack Obama teams up with Corzine at a campaign rally on Thursday. While Obama has headlined seven political fundraising events this year, this will be the first campaign rally he's attended for a fellow Democrat since his January inauguration. The Quinnipiac poll indicates that six out of 10 New Jersey voters approve of the job Obama's doing as president.
"Good news for Gov. Jon Corzine: President Barack Obama is coming in and Obama's job numbers among New Jersey voters are good," adds Carroll.
The poll also includes a three-way match up, with Christie 9 points ahead of Corzine, and independent candidate Christopher Daggett at 8 percent.
The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted July 8-19, with 1,514 New Jersey likely voters questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.
A Fairleigh Dickinson University survey conducted in late June indicated that Christie had a 6 point lead over Corzine.