Gov. Chris Christie is making huge strides for a potential 2016 presidential candidacy.

(Governor's Office/Tim Larsen)

A new CNN poll finds Christie with a slim lead over the rest of the hypothetical GOP field, though he still loses a mock head-to-head against the likely Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton.

This latest survey marks a seismic shift in Christie's national reputation following the early year tarnish of Bridgegate.

It also comes as his national fundraising machine gains steam as head of the Republican Governor's Association.

Christie's frantic summer tour has given him vital exposure to both voters and the big money Republican donors.