New Jersey voters say Christie a leader, not a bully
July 17th, 2012
09:48 AM ET
10 years ago

New Jersey voters say Christie a leader, not a bully

(CNN) – More New Jersey voters say the outspoken Republican governor of their state is a leader rather than a bully, according to a poll released Tuesday.

Fifty percent of voters surveyed in the Quinnipiac University poll described Gov. Chris Christie as a leader, compared to 45% who said he was a bully. The "leader" rating is down slightly from April, when 54% said Christie was a leader and 39% said he was a bully.

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A few well-publicized outbursts from Christie since April may have contributed to the drop in the "leader" rating. At the end of June, Christie asked a reporter "Are you stupid" after being asked an off-topic question at a press conference, and he was caught on video yelling at a heckler in July.

"Gov. Christopher Christie's squabble on the Seaside boardwalk – shades of Snooki! – underlined his pugnacious 'Jersey Guy' image with some voters, who volunteered that he's a bully. But most of his fellow New Jerseyans call him a leader," Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, wrote in a release accompanying the poll's release.

Overall, a majority of voters in New Jersey – 65% - say the tone and level of civility in Garden State politics is negative, though 60% say the tone is the same as in Washington. Twelve percent say New Jersey politics are more negative than in the nation's capital, compared to 23% who say the situation in New Jersey is better.

Christie, who declined to make his own bid for the GOP presidential nomination, would be a bad choice for Mitt Romney's running mate, a majority of the New Jersey voters said. Fifty-three percent said he'd make a bad vice presidential choice, and 40% said he would make a good pick.

"Politicians still gossip about the idea, but New Jerseyans think Christie would be a bad choice for VP," Carroll said. "The Gov's job approval number holds comfortably above 50 percent and voters like him and his policies."

The Quinnipiac University poll was conduced by telephone from 1,623 registered voters between July 9-15. The sampling error was plus or minus 2.4 percentage points.

Filed under: Chris Christie • New Jersey
soundoff (18 Responses)

    Hey Gov. Christie! Jenny Craig called. You can join their program for free!!!

    July 17, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  2. Laverne

    He is a leadership style is to be a bully. The way he call other folk names is disgusting, especially coming from someone who has so many obvious flaws himself. I don't think Christie has the temperment to be president or vice president. He is a Jersey kind of guy and NJ is where he should remain!

    July 17, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  3. kate

    Good leaders are not bullies. Christie is a bully not a leader.

    July 17, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  4. Jim Klimaski

    The headline is clearly misleading. Christie's "bullying" score rose 6 percentage points in the last few months. That's the story here.

    July 17, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  5. mctampa

    I beg to differ. If a boss or a teacher talked to anyone the way he does, they would be disciplined or fired. Why do people like to be treated poorly so, that is my question. There is never a reason to name call and just be out right rude the way this BULLY is.

    July 17, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    Conclusion: Folks in New Jersey like to be bullied. Or they think bullies make good leaders. Or they think the only way to make stubborn people do the right the right thing is to bully them into submission.

    July 17, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  7. mcskadittle

    yes, he is not a bully like Mitt

    July 17, 2012 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  8. Republicans - "The Not Intended to Be Factually Accurate" Party

    Another shiny thing to draw attention away from secretive offshore bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.

    Isn`t the saalient point that 45% consider him to be a BULLY? Isn`t that too high for a Bully quotient? Is Christie suppose to join the BULLY Romney? Mr. "Do as I say, not as I do"?

    Romney`s response when contronted with that episode where he & his gang held a suspected gay student down & cut his hair speakes VOLUMES about his character. He said he couldn`t remember it. Ha! He is such a Liar!

    July 17, 2012 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  9. NVa Native

    He's GOP – self-righteous loud mouth jerk is the norm.

    July 17, 2012 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  10. carrotroot

    So basically people's opinions of Christie is shifting towards being a bully, since his positives have decreased 4 points and his negatives have increased 6 points.

    July 17, 2012 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Or they think the only way to make stubborn people do the right the right thing is to bully them into submission.
    Or they think the only way to get people to do things they want done is to bully them...
    He's a loudmouthed, uncooth bully. If he gets things done for the people of New Jersey more power to him, but he is in no way ready to represent us on the world stage.

    July 17, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  12. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Spell check: that should've been "uncouth". Pardon.

    July 17, 2012 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  13. paulcat

    I'm glad to here that the New Jersey voters loves this bully. Just make sure you continue to vote and keep him in New Jersey.

    July 17, 2012 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  14. Mack

    This poll was taken outside of "Bada Bings" on a Saturday night.

    July 17, 2012 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  15. Anita Lee

    Wish I had been asked to participate in this poll. Never have I seen a bigger bully in politics ! And with absolutely no class !

    July 17, 2012 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  16. livingston

    He's a bully. Sorry GOP but there is no good spin you can put on that.

    July 17, 2012 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  17. sick of republican phonies

    I live in NJ, and see the local coverage of this clown. Anyone who says he ISN'T a bully is a liar, a fool, or deluding themselves. That is his leadership style- pick someone as the enemy (state workers, teachers, etc), and try to get the populace to hate them while bullying them to do what he wants.

    July 17, 2012 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  18. California Gary

    Not a bully? Are you kidding me? This guy is a bully with a capital "B". If he wasn't a politician, he'd be a bouncer at some boardwalk casino.

    July 17, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |