Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Christie Is Not Feeling the Love in New Jersey

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Christie Is Not Feeling the Love in New Jersey

Article excerpt

THE RESULTS of the latest Monmouth University Poll are in: Governor Christie, the people of New Jersey don't like you. They really don't like you.

There are still Christie supporters in New Jersey, no doubt. But not so many as there once were. Chris Christie has gone from being the man in the blue fleece to the politician who fleeced. New Jersey residents feel bamboozled, and polls have reflected that for some time.

Outside New Jersey, Christie makes up his own interpretation of polling results. A few months ago, he said a previous poll showing a majority of New Jerseyans did not think he would make a good president meant that "a lot" of them wanted him to stay in New Jersey. While most folks in the Garden State just laughed at the response, the folks at Monmouth were up to the challenge.

For this poll, they first asked whether Christie would make a good president; 69 percent said no, with 27 percent saying yes. Then Monmouth asked whether the same respondents who said Christie would not make a good president said that because they wanted the governor to stay in New Jersey. Of that group, 89 percent said they responded that Christie would not make a good president because they believed Christie would not make a good president. Only 5 percent of that group said their negative response reflected a longing for Christie to stay in New Jersey.

Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a statement, "I'm not sure how the governor defines 'a lot,' but any common sense usage of the term would have to be significantly greater than 5 percent."

Now that is telling it like it is.

The poll provides some other not-so-surprising pieces of information. New Jerseyans believe the governor has abandoned them on his quest for the White House. His disapproval rating by all respondents is 58 percent; by registered voters, 60 percent. And 57 percent think he should resign now that he is a declared presidential candidate.

Fiscal conservative Christie may at least want to take note of the state's disapproval of picking up the tab for his security detail now that he is traveling for solely personal political purposes: 82 percent of respondents want the Christie campaign to pay for it.

When Hillary Clinton ran for president in 2008, she was a U.S. senator. So was Barack Obama. Neither of them paid much attention to their full-time jobs when running. But as Christie likes to point out, there is a difference between a senator and a governor. States have two U.S. senators, and those two are part of a body of 100. Governor is a one-person job.

It would be interesting if Monmouth could take its poll to Wisconsin and see if Gov. Scott Walker is faring any better. And it would be even more interesting if there was a national discussion about whether federal elected officials should be required to resign office if they run for national office. …

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