Gov. Chris Christie's job performance and favorability ratings have dropped dramatically in a new Rutgers-Eagleton poll as the Bridgegate scandal continues to rock the Republican and members of his inner circle.

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The poll also shows many Democrats are abandoning Christie and a lot of the good will he build up after Superstorm Sandy has evaporated.

"We have 53-percent approval of the governor's performance handling his job, down 15 points since last November," said David Redlawsk, director of the Rutgers-Eagleton Poll and professor of political science at Rutgers University. "His favorability rating has taken even a bigger hit. He's now at 46 percent favorable, 43 percent unfavorable. The governor's personal favorability is down 19 points since his re-election."

The drop in the favorability rating is led by a 26 point decline among Democrats. Christie often touts bipartisanship and his ability to reach across the political aisle to get things done. His job approval numbers are down 15 points since November, which is far below the 66 to 73 percent support Christie had enjoyed throughout the year since Sandy.

Perhaps not surprisingly, the governor's favorability numbers are much lower among people who travel across the George Washington Bridge at least once a week, at 37 percent favorable. Those who use the bridge less often are more positive, with 45 percent favorable, compared to 51 percent favorable among voters who never use the bridge.

Asked to grade Christie, 43 percent now give Christie an A or B which is down 16 points. Twenty-nine percent give either a D or F, compared to just 18 percent two months ago.

Two-thirds of the survey was completed before the recent allegations by Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer that Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno threatened to withhold Sandy aid unless Zimmer approved a development project in her city.

"The governor's approval rating of handling Sandy has dropped 11 points from 80-percent approval to 69-percent approved," Redlawsk said. "We think that's come particularly among the one-third of the voters we talked to after Zimmer's allegations."

The statewide poll of 826 New Jersey adults has a margin of error of +/- 3.4 percentage points. It was conducted from Jan 14 - 19. Within this sample are 757 registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 3.6 percentage points.