The new Quinnipiac poll largely consists of good news for Gov. Chris Christie, who’s had to tap a reservoir of voter good will in the last week but is finding plenty of it. The pollster’s lede is that by a 54–40 margin, more voters call Christie a “leader” than a “bully.” Hell of a choice, but he’s never shied from it.
The more interesting result contradicts what the Monmouth poll told us on Monday. Christie’s strength among Republicans has waned. His overall approval is down, sure, from 68 percent last summer to 55 percent now. Much of the leakage is coming from Democrats (down 5 points) and independents (down 22 points). But he’s lost 15 points among Republicans—down from 96 percent approval to 81 percent approval.
Not great. Like Matt Yglesias says, if you are looking at the potential 2016 field as a donor, and you were not already so sold on Christie that you were rooting for him to beat this rap, you’re in pause mode now. Christie’s made his bed; his best hope now lies in media overreach, in scandals that get coverage now but don’t pan out. The “feds investigating Sandy ads” story feels like the best candidate for this, given that everyone ran with it on Monday and HUD took a few days to clarify that its audit was “not an investigation of the procurement process.”