Christie comes in second to ‘don’t know’ in recent poll
Gov. Chris Christie would top all named Republican presidential hopefuls in a New Jersey primary, but he didn't exactly come out on top in a new poll asking Garden State GOP voters about possible 2016 nominations.
According to a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind poll released Wednesday, a higher percentage of NJ Republicans polled said they "don't know" who they'd support in the race. The survey also revealed that Democrats hoping to take Christie's spot when he leaves office are largely unknown to Garden State voters.
"Among Garden State Republicans, their preferences are in order; Gov. Christie with 20 percent, 'someone else' with 15 percent, but the biggest vote getter among the group was the 'don't know' category at 22 percent," said Krista Jenkins, professor of political science at FDU and director of PublicMind.
Percentages for other possible GOP presidential candidates included:
- Scott Walker: 14 percent;
- Jeb Bush: 13 percent;
- Ted Cruz: 8 percent;
- Rand Paul: 8 percent.
"With his continued struggles over his approval and disapproval numbers among voters back home Christie's slight edge over others must feel like a win," Jenkins said.
An FDU-PublicMind survey released Tuesday showed only 36 percent of New Jersey voters approved of the job Christie is doing while exactly 50 percent disapproved.
The Democratic side of the presidential primary ledger is a slam dunk for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton according to voters in the latest poll. Almost two-thirds (62 percent) said they would favor Clinton, while 27 percent said they didn't know.
Name recognition is evidently a major issue for some democrats who are thought to be jockeying for position to become New Jersey's next governor.
"First comes state Sen. President Steve Sweeney who is known by around four-in-ten (44 percent) Garden State voters. Jersey City mayor Steve Fulop and former Ambassador to Germany and Goldman Sachs CEO Phil Murphy are unknown to vast majorities across the state with 87 and 88 percent respectively," Jenkins explained.
The poll of 790 registered New Jersey voters was conducted by telephone with both landline and cell phones from April 13-19. The margin of error is +/- 3.5 percentage points.